One of the most sought after Persian village weaving styles, antique 19th century and turn of the 20th-century Sultanabads are coveted for their high-decorative quality as well as for the individualized artistry of their stylized floral motifs. Woven in a series of villages in Western Central Persia, Sultanabad carpets employ overscale, spacious allover pattern designs that are highly prized for their versatility. They are equally gracious in modern settings as they are in more traditional decors. Because these carpets were often woven on a craft level in the home, the amount of creativity and spontaneity in the best Sultanabads is astonishing. It is no surprise that antique Sultanabads are the carpet of choice among many sophisticated interior designers.
Stylized floral designs predominate, with the very spacious patterns of large-scale motifs the most prized. An exclusive subgroup, known as “Ivory Sultanabads,” are ardently sought after by connoisseurs internationally for their intensely luminous ivory to beige fields. Whether the field is ivory, rust, rose, blue or the occasionally found gold or yellow, their visual impact is sophisticated, yet contemporary, especially when paired with the allover botanical designs traditional to this style. These include Mina Khani (small circular rosettes), Mustafavi (stylized Garden of Paradise) and the much-loved Harshang (stylized Dragon and Blossom.) Sultanabad weavers also adored the classical Herati design, which presents diagonal lattices interconnecting stylized rosettes and frond motifs, with entirely unique variations of all of these patterns occasionally found.
Antique Sultanabads are one of the few 19th-century Persian weaving groups that produced a great variety of formats from room size to palace-size carpets. They created a limited series of rugs in very difficult to find, generous widths that are ideal for living room and sitting room settings.