What does a real Persian carpet cost in the USA?
February 23, 2010 7:34 AM   Subscribe

Handmade Persian/Turkish/Pakistani wool carpet question: If you have bought one recently in the US or Canada, or have visited a store where they are being sold, can you tell me what the level of quality and prices are like for varying sizes?

As some of Mefi may have seen from my previous questions and posts I've been working in Afghanistan for about three years. As I've learned more about the culture and economy, I've had the opportunity to visit the factories where high quality handmade carpets are being created. These are the particularly high density type - where a 6 foot x 3 foot carpet might represent two months of work for one person, working ten hours a day, six days a week. Not "war rugs" in the novelty Afghan style, but traditional Persian designs made from wool like you might see covering the living room floor of a wealthy Iranian expatriate family.

Now that I know how much these carpets are selling for direct from the factories in northern Afghanistan, and in Pakistan - I'm wondering how much they are going for in high-end US boutique shops... If you have recently bought a high quality handmade carpet, can you tell me its size and what you paid for it? Or, if you have seen such a thing for sale in a North American shop, how much was its asking price?

I'm asking because carpets are obviously heavy, bulky and difficult to ship. Air freight is ruled out and the only economical way to send stuff back to the US is a convoluted route which takes 45-60 days by ground and ocean freight. If I did buy a dozen nice carpets and ship them home for personal use and for resale it would need to be economically worthwhile...
posted by thewalrus to Home & Garden (3 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I know that the store in our area generally charges around $500 for what I would consider a door mat sized rug and their prices for regular sized carpets go well into the four and five figure ranges. And that's when they're having a sale!!
posted by Hanuman1960 at 7:53 AM on February 23, 2010

Response by poster: By doormat, you mean about two and a half to three square feet?
posted by thewalrus at 9:32 AM on February 23, 2010

That's correct, sorry for the generality!
posted by Hanuman1960 at 9:48 AM on February 23, 2010

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