Bespoke Spanish Knot Carpet
for the Bedchamber of Edward 1
in the Tower of London

Spanish carpet in Tower of London

The brief was to produce a rug with the authentic Spanish knot in which the mainfield was to take its inspiration from a Star Ushak in the Textile Museum's collection and the border was to be kufic in the manner of the Alfombra carpet in the Berlin Museum. The colours were to be fresh and bright as they would have been in Edward's time.

This page briefly documents the making of this carpet. A factsheet of the academic background of the Tower of London Restoration Project can be downloaded from the Royal Historic Palaces website.



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 Putting the Warp on the Loom
The Warp

Madder Dyebath
Madder Red

Weaving begins
The Weaving Begins

The Spanish Rug
Stage 2

Trimming the fringes
Trimming the fringes


Setting up the heddle
The Heddle

Pomegranate Dyebath
Pomegranate Yellow

Weaving the carpet
Stage 1

Weaving the carpet
Stage 2 Rear view of loom

Shearing the pile
Shearing the pile


Cushion Covers
Exotic carpet cushion covers


In the Textile Museum's
Catalogue of Spanish Rugs, Louisa Bellinger describes it thus:

This results in a fabric with a true quincuncial arrangement of knots as seen clearly in the back view here:




Yellow with Tesu
Brown with Walnut
Rust with Henna

Spanish knot weave back
Back of Spanish Weave

Turkish Knot
Back of Turkish Weave


Unlike the Turkish and Persian knots
which are tied on a pair, The Spanish Knot is tied on a
single warp string.


We would like to thank Carol Bier and Doris Hendershot of the Textile Museum, Washington for providing us every kind of help including complete structural analysis of the Museum's collection of early Spanish carpets. Thanks also to Drea Lead for generously sharing with us her knowledge of medieval European dyeing practices.

Mannam Carpets
Lahore, Pakistan.

Mannam Carpets -  Superior Custom-made Orientals.

Copyright © 2014 Tariq Habib Mirza