Please note: unless otherwise stated, we're selling rugs by category of design and cannot guarantee you will get exactly what is pictured. This is due to the nature of each artisan taking the artistic liberty to make a design with whatever colors and styles they choose. Other factors that may be different include text, extra elements or lack thereof, and border style. All rugs will be 100% unique.
Russian small arms in general are a common sight on many of the war rug designs after long occupation by Russia in the 80s/90s and America's in the 2000s/2010s. Quite possibly reaching Appliance status in the middle east, they've snuck their way onto one of Afghanistan's longest-lasting traditions.
Afghanistan has been invaded, on and off, since 300 BC — conflict is to Afghanistan what the cheeseburger is to the United States. As far as Afghan culture goes, the only thing that predates war is rug making.
It should come as no surprise then that Afghanistan would make its own version of the Whopperito™, combining an established national pastime with ethnic tradition.
Handmade since the Soviet-Afghan war, war rugs are a bizarre cultural mash-up between Afghan pictorial weaving and images of conflict. Tanks, planes, guns, and explosions are painstakingly hand knotted into wool rugs in small Afghan villages and in refugee camps along the Pakistani border. Each rug is the unique result of over a month of work by the weaver and a valuable source of income for an Afghan family it supports.
These rugs have the widest variety of design within the same general theme, so we've sorted by some of it's main features. "Death Of Russia" is pretty self explanatory - the rug will have that phrase embroidered on it, usually spelled hilariously, on the top. "Arsenal" features a larger variety of smaller weapons, aircraft, and vehicles. "Double AK" Designs feature two larger AKs vertically, "Side AK" features one, and you guessed it, "Four AK" features four larger prominent Kalashnikovs.
- Hand-woven wool yarn
- Roughly 85cm x 60cm (sizes can vary slightly due to the weaving process)
- Made in Afghanistan
- Different colors, shapes, and features depending on the weaver
Displaying Your Rug
These rugs are most frequently displayed on a wall. They can be placed on the ground, but it is more likely that they will be damaged or dirtied on the floor.
If you place the rug on the floor, please use a high-quality carpet pad underneath it to prevent slipping and unnecessary wear.
If hanging your rug, we recommend you use a rod, or a long strip of 2" hook and loop fastener to evenly distribute its weight. There are several good tutorials online, and this small step will ensure your rug doesn't sag unevenly over time.
Cleaning Your Rug
DO NOT LAUNDER
If it gets dusty or dirty, hang your rug on a clothesline and beat it with a stick like it's
300 BC 2019 AD.
If you want to be less crude about things, please contact a professional rug cleaning service specializing in artistic rugs (not carpet cleaners). The hand-woven construction and natural dyes used in these war rugs require special products and techniques to clean without permanent damage.