Nakkaş Halı is proud to be one of two exclusive retailers in all of Istanbul for the exquisite silk rug collection, “Hereke Sultani”. These fine productions of one hundred per cent cocoon silk come from Hereke, a town near Istanbul. Hereke was traditionally the place where large rugs were woven for the palaces and villas of Istanbul, during the 17th and 18th centuries. The rugs from this tradition are ornate, finely detailed and expansive in design. The selection at Nakkas includes medallion designs, floral designs, and even recreations of paintings and prints, depicting life and images from 18th century Istanbul. Many of these rugs have won awards at international trade shows and fairs. Please check our ‘Award Rugs’ section for a specific list of these rugs.
Nakkaş’ Kumkapı line of silk rugs use a high-quality silk weft on silk warp and is produced with a special technique. It is one of the few silk rug collections that uses truly natural dyes. Properly fixing natural dyes on silk rugs requires an extended and involved process. Typically, silk yarn is dyed with chrome dyes, but the silk in this rug has been dyed with 100% natural dyes. It is called a “Kumkapı” rug, since it is made exactly like the Kumkapı rugs of the 19th century – using not only the same dyeing techniques but also the same knotting techniques. Lastly, the finishing process on these rugs is very specific and difficult – they are washed several times with walnut skins to give an antique sheen – and this is a very delicate procedure that must be carefully monitored. This collection exhibits the traditional asymmetric patterns of the 18th and 19th century. In a typical design, the simple field of delicate organic design is framed by a contrasting band of color.
The Öz İpek line of silk rugs are really unique. The designs are truly intricate. They have a very high density of knots, often more than 645 knots per sq inch, and sometimes as high as 10,000. Nakkas is proud to share with you several different beautiful and interesting designs in our Öz İpek rugs. One of our designs is the “Gate of Happiness” which is also known as the “Entrance into Paradise”. Paradise, naturally, can only be achieved by passing through the gate as we are told in many legendary myths. For that reason, Ottoman Sultans have given the name “Gate of Happiness” to the entrance of the Topkapı Palace. The original design of the monumental entrance door of the Topkapi Palace can be seen on our silk carpet. Nakkas is also proud to have a beautiful “Tree of Life” design in the Öz İpek silk rug collection. The border design is an endless tree, symbolizing long life and re-birth, while the center part of the rug, which consists of leaves and flowers, is woven in a naturalistic style and forms the basic composition. The concept of a tree of life has been used in biology, religion, philosophy, and mythology. The Tree of Life is a central symbol in Turkic mythology as well.
One of Nakkaş’ hidden treasures is our collection of tiny world-record-holding silk rugs. A 5” x 8” Hereke silk carpet has knots so small, the weaver uses magnifying glasses to see the silk threads as she ties them, and she can only work in short intervals, half an hour at a time, followed by a break, to rest her eyes. Otherwise, she will risk going blind. Taking more than one year to produce, our tiny treasures depict a number of different designs, such as the “Ottoman garden” design, with a beautiful tree at its center, and several different birds on the branches, and a goat and a lamb under the boughs. Such works of art can only be produced by specially trained weavers.
SILK SAL COLLECTION
Part of our aim here at Nakkas is to develop and support a re-invigorated Turkish rug market, and so two years ago we decided to invest in a project: the Silk Şal Collection. Using locally produced cocoon silk colored with rich natural dyes have resulted in a fine collection of extremely high-end silk rugs.
In an effort to support local manufacturing, we decided to have the rugs woven in a small village near Dıyarbakır, in the eastern part of Turkey. Called Esentepe, this little village is located near the town of Bağıvar. This area is known for making wool rugs, but we introduced the techniques for silk weaving, and re-launched this traditional cottage industry. The Şal designs themselves typically come from the Zara region, but in that area, there are few weavers left. As we developed the silk weaving in Esentepe, we also introduced the Şal designs and patterns, and worked with the weavers to reinterpret these patterns, and added more vibrant colors.
Since starting the project, we have been refining the design and production process. Just this last month, we have received the results: A collection of twenty beautiful silk rugs in various sizes and with a variety of designs. Two of our designs are included here.
One is called the ‘Gate of Happiness’. This design represents the entrance to Paradise, and the promise of immortality. As spoken of in many legends and myths, Paradise can only be reached by passing through this gate, but the paths to this gate are many and varied, and each person must choose his or her own way. Each stripe in this Şal rug design represents a different path to the Gate of Happiness. The rich color combinations symbolize the joy of Paradise. If you are worthy of Paradise, and you are lucky enough to choose the right path, you will reach the ‘Gate of Happiness.’.
Ekran Resmi 2015-11-17 16.38.10
The other is called: Colorful Anatolian Houses.
Ekran Resmi 2015-11-17 16.38.16
The carpet is divided into fields, and the ornament in each rectangular box has a meaning: Fish means fate. The kettle is a symbol of purity. The house is the desire for protection as well as a permanent home. The pattern “hands on the hips” represents the mother goddess of Anatolia before Christianity, and is a symbol of fertility. The flowers, the deer, the Yin-Yang symbols and even the geometric patterns from the Selcuk period fill this matrix with vibrant colors. The beautiful images draw the eye around the rug and tell the story of the richness of the simple life.