Indian and Pakistani rug-making share a common beginning, thought to be the 16th century with influences of Persian rug-making. The Indian weavers added their own elements, with rich colors and a unique weaving style. The Indo-Persian rugs were most notably colorful and developed with floral and animal designs. The Indian tradition was developed using fine wool and silk.

Upon British Independence in 1947, India and Pakistan separated, and at that time, the rug-making in each country took on distinct characteristics.

In India today, much of the wool is imported from Australia and New Zealand, giving these rugs a fine hand-feel, adding to the precision work by Indian weavers.

The Pakistan weaving tradition began upon Pakistan becoming separate from India. Pakistani weavers use local wool like Ghazni, which is a strong, thick wool from native sheep.

Design and Motifs

Over 300 years ago, Indian weavers combined Persian influences with their own creations.

Indian regions with specific designs are:




Pakistani weavers are influenced by the designs of Iran, Afghanistan, Turkey, and India. Some rugs may be reproductions, but the quality is good and mostly natural dyes are used.   The traditional Pakistan rug may also use New Zealand wool and used the Turkish knot.

Purchasing an India or Pakistan Rug

Indian rugs are intricate and finely woven. They are strong rugs and their rich colors can match a variety of aesthetics. The finishing is not as delicate as Afghan rugs. Be careful purchasing Indian rugs as many are machine made. All the rugs at Michael Rugs are hand made.

For more information, please visit our page on Oriental Rug Basics