This exquisite Bidjar rug is 110 years old, circa 1910. Bidjar rugs are known for these dense weave and durability. Bidjar rugs have the nickname 'the iron carpet' due to their incredibly dense weave! The weave is so dense that they can be hard to fold and weigh far more than other hand-knotted rugs of the same size.
The secret to the density of these 'iron carpets' is in the double weft. The weft strings are the horizontal strings on the loom, strung between each row of knots.
Many rugs have double wefts and aren't this dense. The difference is that Bidjar weavers wetted one of the wefts and used tools to tamp it down especially tight. The wet wool is able to be condensed far more than dry wool making the wool per square inch of Bidjar rugs much higher (and heavier!) than other rugs of similar size.
A rug guru can feel a rug and know immediately if it is Bidjar - the feel is quite distinct!
Rugs that we call "Bidjar" rugs were woven in the town called Bidjar as well as surrounding villages. Settled Afshar tribes near Takab made Bidjar rugs! In fact, this piece above is an Afshar Bidjar.