Turkoman rugs are made by the nomads of Central Asia and Turkestan and include Afghan, Baluchi and Bokhara. Most are reddish and have a geometric design that incorporates the coat of arms (or “gul”) of the individual tribe. Turkoman rugs are usually made by women and are highly regarded for their workmanship.
Turkoman weavers are also renowned for the quality and variety of their carpet bags and for weavings that decorated their animals, particularly, camel-flank hangings.
In Afghan rugs, the ground colour is nearly always red. The main pattern usually consists of large octagons divided into four by blue and brown panels, the colours matching in opposite corners. Afghan rugs are always made of wool and often have long fringes.
Samarkand rugs are actually produced more than 300km away from Samarkand in far Western China. They are less geometric than Turkoman rugs but less graceful than the Chinese. Their chief motifs are medallions in the shape of flattened circles, pomegranate trees, bats and butterflies.