Belouch, Balouch, Baluch, Beluch
Belouch carpets are knotted in the eastern part of Khorassan and all the way along the Iranian border to Pakistan and Afghanistan. They are mostly made by Belouch nomads, but also in the towns of Turbat-i-Jan, Turbat-i-Haidari and Firdaus. Both nomads and residents use horizontal looms. You can find many Belouch carpets on the market. Many of them are typical prayer carpets with a very stylised construction and a very simple filling pattern, such as a stylised version of the ‘Tree of Life’ or stylised bird patterns. Common to the Belouch carpets is the red-brown ground colour. They are usually very modest carpets with many borders. All the carpets are knotted with Senneh knots (Persian knots). The quality of the Belouch carpets can fluctuate more than any other, and it is difficult to specify a knot density – it can vary anywhere from 7,400 to 69,000 per ft2.
The carpets that the market refers to as Mashad-Belouch have received their name because Mashad is the gathering point. From a quality perspective, they belong with the best of the Belouch carpets and can be small masterpieces of excellent quality. Often, they are finished with several artistic kelim borders. The warp and weft threads are often cotton, and Senneh knots are usedAfghan-Belouch Afghan-Belouch are typically nomadic carpets where the warp and weft are made of wool and cattle hair. Even though the quality fluctuates greatly, they can be incredibly charming carpets in the favourable end of the price range. As the name implies, these are Belouch carpets from the Afghan side of the border.Zabol-Belouch Zabol-Belouch were very common on the market in the 1970s. Unfortunately, few can be found today. They are knotted near the Pakistani border in the town of Zabol and its vicinity. Their patterns are inspired by carpets from the Khorassan area in south-eastern Iran, but you can also find carpets in the same style as the other Belouch carpets. The colour scheme is golden, black, beige and brick-red, sometimes tending towards orange. They are usually charming carpets of good quality with naturally dyed wool. The warp and weft are made of wool and cattle hair.Kurdi-BelouchGouchan carpets, Kurdi-Belouch and Ghombad-Ghabuz are knotted in the area west, north-west of Mashad by nomads and local farmers. The patterns are simple, with motifs such as ram horns, scorpions, octagons and large stylised medallions. Some of the motifs are often knotted in silk. Overall, they are very inspired by the patterns from the Azerbaijan area (the north-western part of Iran and the border area towards Turkey and Russia). The colours consist of warm red, golden, orange and black. The wool is dyed with natural dyes and the Senneh knot is used. The warp and weft can be made from either wool, cotton or silk. They can have up to 69,000 knots per ft2.
You are reading an extract from the book ‘Oriental Carpets, Knottet with Love’ by Martin Munkholm.
This extensive book about all that is carpets can be borrowed in Danish libraries or be bought following this link: http://www.belle-rugs.dk/dk/ekspertise/taeppebog/
The book is published by Muusmann Forlag.
For more info: muusmann-forlag.dk
See video about Belouch rugs here: https://www.youtube.com/embed/c8nRBbXsB08
You can find our selection of Belouch carpets underneath.