Identification and Classification of Animal Motifs

The following is an excerpt from the article “Identification and Classification of the Existing Animal Motifs in Indian Timurid Carpets “ by Rezvan Ahmadi Payam and Mohsen Marasy.
Before the Timurid rule, carpet weaving in India did not have a coherent organization. However, after India’s Timurid sultans rose to power, their support for this art lead to the production of exquisite and precious works. The main features of these works are the animal motifs contained in them, which are very diverse in terms of type and number of species. For instance, in some examples, flowers and vegetal elements are replaced by animal heads, and in others, various animal species are depicted while capering or in combat. With these interpretations, the motifs in the aforementioned carpets can be classified into three general categories:

1. Carpets with imaginary animal motifs:

While being the oldest in terms of antiquity and the most sophisticated in terms of design and composition, these carpets contain the most ambiguous variety of Indian carpet motifs. In these carpets, a collection of Indian animals and birds with monstrous masks, vases and flowering plants are combined in a complex image. On a wine red background, animals and birds with horrible masks are depicted while emerging from the mouth or the forehead of each other. Some researchers regard these figures as symbols of fertility and fecundity. The oldest of these carpets date back to the period of Akbar’s reign.

The primary pattern for the intricate animal complexes in the carpets with imaginary animal motifs could be a combination of the Makara and Kirtimukha figures. Makara is a mythical sea creature that was originally portrayed as a crocodile. This creature was depicted as a biped or sometimes a quadruped dog-like animal. In the artistic works of the Gupta period, the Makara was portrayed with a decorative tail. The Kirtimukha monster face is a combination of a lion and a strange sea creature with no lower jaw and is similar to a hanging skull. However, the powerful and lively lines on its face breathe life into this imaginary figure. As Kirtimukha breathes heavily through its nostrils, flower strings outpour from its muzzle.

One of the prominent characteristics of the Makara and Kirtimukha figures is that they are usually combined together and portray the acts of clawing and biting.

Another pattern used in the carpets with imaginary animal motifs is the one that became prevalent during the reign of Jahangir, the eldest son of Akbar. This pattern is vastly different from the older examples and includes motifs portraying the heads of different animals (lions, deer, foxes, elephants, and some birds) in a swirling structure distinct from the ones that depict plants. Moreover, the combination of animal faces, which is common in carpets woven during the reign of Akbar, is not seen in this pattern. However, unusual animal faces still exist in the form of “Vagh” motifs. Vagh is a tree whose fruits are in the form of the humans and different animal species. Vagh motif is evident in carpets woven during the reign of Jahangir. A similar structure is also apparent in Kashan carpets dating back to the 10th century AH.

What is considered as the distinctive feature of Indian carpets, other than the portrayal of unusable figures, is the creation of naturalistic depths or forms. In spite of the poor design, the artists created their desired naturalistic effect by using several color shades and drawing one or two lines among the animals’ main body color.

(Picture 1 – A carpet with animal-imaginary pattern.)

(Picture 2 – A carpet with animal-imaginary pattern.)

2. Carpets with pictorial animal motifs

The second group of carpets depicting animals are the ones with pictorial motifs. These motifs are scenes that divide the carpet backgrounds into separate picture surfaces with different themes and are not symmetric, neither crosswise nor lengthwise. Like other carpets woven during Akbar shah’s rule, these carpets are heavily reliant on both realistic and imaginary aspects. An example of carpets with pictorial motifs is kept at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. This example contains three separate scenes. The part at the top depicts a scene from the court. The part in the middle illustrates the everyday life (a scene of cheetahs being hunt). Lastly, the part at the bottom portrays a mythological scene (a hybrid creature being attacked by a bird). The space between these scenes is filled with capering animals and scenes of the combat between a lion and a bull.

3. Carpets with vegetal and animal motifs

A great number of Indian carpets woven during the reigns of Akbar and Jahangir have motifs based on swirling vegetal elements. Vegetal carpet motifs are pictures inspired by Nature. The richness of these carpet patterns is augmented by the addition of the animal motifs to their network of swirling branches. The carpets with the aforementioned motifs primarily date back to the first quarter of the 17th century AD and the period of Jahangir’s reign. These carpets were woven based on the Sanguszko Persian carpets of the Safavid era. Unlike the Persian carpets, the Indian example, which belongs to a private collection, is symmetrical crosswise and contains particular patterns each repeated for three times. Animals, depicted either individually or in combat can also be observed among the twisted branches of Khataee flowers.

The Introduction of “Sky Hunting” and “Mankind” Carpets

In the Islamic art, each design and pattern has an internal meaning in addition to the theme and superficial beauty – a meaning that represents the conscience and mind and if the viewer goes beyond the superficial beauty, they see the internal elegance. Beauty is internal and beyond the viewer’s mind. Talented artists with spiritual worldview instill a specific feeling into the viewers – a feeling which whispers the flow of entity.

Sky Hunting Carpet



Design: Corner Medallion
 Designer: Master Isa Bahadori
 Date of Contribution: 2011
 Dimensions: 150x250 cm
 Knot count: 70 knots in 6.5 cm
 Dimensions: 150x250 cm
 Warp material: Silk
 Woof material: Cotton
 Pile material: Wool and Silk
 Contributor: Haj Gholam Reza Safdarzadeh Haghighi
 Weaver: Woven in the Carpet-weaving Workshop at the College of Fine Arts in Isfahan under the supervision of Master Gholam Ali Safdarzadeh Haghighi


This exquisite carpet has 3 borders: a wide border, two small borders and a background. The background is designed by Corner Medallion design with Sky Hunting theme which includes spiritual and philosophical themes.




If we imagine ourselves in the sky looking down while looking at this design, we can see the stunning human and animal’s hunting scene on the ground designed in the center of the carpet or Medallion with the Animal’s Combat design or Tasheer, which is the raised designs of the Islamic art. A horse rider whose hat looks like those of Safavid periods is busy hunting and having fun and has the central role.


If we imagine ourselves in the sky looking down while looking at this design, we can see the stunning human and animal’s hunting scene on the ground designed in the center of the carpet or Medallion with the Animal’s Combat design or Tasheer, which is the raised designs of the Islamic art. A horse rider whose hat looks like those of Safavid periods is busy hunting and having fun and has the central role





Islamic lines, among these illustrations, are the vicissitudes of life which can be seen as Islamic spirals or clouds and bushes. Next to it, there is another circle visualized with beautiful colorful birds swirling in a rotary way because “circle” is the sign of time and symbol of constant and circular motion of the sky and is representative of the cosmic sky. Circle with its dynamic motion is the indicator of change. In the third circle, there are three hawks swirling around a circle of birds. On the head of the Medallion below, there are two birds captured by an eagle and their heads are downward and since they have been busy with earthly delights, they have fallen to the bottom and are captured by predators.





On the head of the Medallion above, there are four birds under the umbrella of Prosperity Huma bird and these birds are looking upward and thinking about ascent.

In the corners on the upper part of the carpet, the design of Phoenix or Prosperity Huma bird among flowers and “Xeta” leaves has been illustrated.






Two corners at the bottom of the carpet among flowers and “Xeta” leaves can be seen with the Animal’s Combat design/ Tasheer and the prey has its head downward and does not look around to escape and does not see “ascent” and has been captured.


Bird signifies freedom and liberty and the triumph of good over evil, prosperity and good fortune, annunciation of spring, fertility, asking for rain, etc. The carpet enjoys skillful designing and color scheme. The contrast of warm and cool colors dominant over the carpet’s color scheme which intensifies with the contrast between dark and light colors is effective in emphasizing the details of the design.



The first version of the woven carpet using this design is ornamenting Tehran Museum of National Arts in 1975. The second copy of this carpet is kept in Isfahan Museum of Decorative Arts where the late Master taught for several years. The third copy (the re-woven version) was contributed to the Imam Reza (PBUH) Shrine which is now being kept at Carpet and Textile Treasure in Astan Quds Razavi.




The Mankind Carpet




Design: Overall Flower Medallion
Designer: Master Isa Bahadori
The Place of Weaving: Isfahan
Dimensions: 260×156 cm
Knot count: 75 knots in 6.5 cm
The Year of Weaving: 2007
‏Woof material: Cotton
Warp material: Silk
Pile material: Wool
Contributor: Haj Gholam Reza Safdarzadeh Haghighi
Weaver: Mr. Mohammadzadeh
Type of Color: Herbal, Chemical

The Carpet of Mankind is an exquisite masterpiece which has summarized the philosophy of life and longevity in form of 3 stages of human life. These triple designs are somehow reflective of the life of mankind (I was naive, I became experienced, I got burned). On the upper head of the Medallion, two weak children have been designed who are standing back to back in order to gain power and get up. The center which is the Medallion of the carpet is youth and becoming experienced.



Young and lively figures are enjoying youthful exuberance and there are two protagonists at the bottom of the Medallion who have reached the end of their lives; they spread-eagled on the ground while leaning against each other. These figures have skillfully been designed and animated with flowers and Xeta leaves.


This carpet lacks corner and enjoys skillful color scheme and design. The contrast of warm and cool colors dominant over the carpet’s color scheme which intensifies with the contrast between dark and light colors is effective in emphasizing the details of the design. There is an inscription woven at the end of the carpet which says: (Isfahan, woven by Gholam Ali Haghighi, designed by Bahadori, 1975) and this also reads in front of it, on the top of the carpet: (dedicated to Holy Astan of Imam Alī ibn Mūsā ar-Riḍā (PBUH)). This carpet is woven and dedicated, in memory of Haj Gholam Ali Safdarzadeh Haghighi, by his son Haj Ghola Reza in 2008.


This carpet is, at least, the third copy of Master Isa Bahadori’s design. The second copy is for sale and is kept in the Museum of National Arts.




Another version of this is in Isfahan Museum of Fine Arts where the late Master Isa Bahadori taught for several years.

Make a Traditional Pot by Using a Glass Bottle

Iranians since ancient times, have cared about their health and nutrition. That is why they used to design their food plates. It can be understood from the motifs on traditional containers. It’s also seen that they sometimes portrayed the stories of wars and victories on their plates. There are numerous figurative patterns on old dishes that was simply designed. These days motifs of old containers are reminiscent of civilization of nation used them, and for some of us these patterns are symbol of our predecessor’s dignified life or moral values. Maybe that is why having them gives us a good feeling.

In this post we want to show you how to make a pot by using a glass bottle and paste. you can use any pattern you like to design your pot.



Items needed
glass bottle
Painting palette

after you prepare all you need its time to choose a pattern. you can select traditional pattern that was used in ancient times. the design that bring a rustic nostalgia to your decor.  let me show you some Iranian patterns that are from 17th and 18th century. First  picture is design of potteries belonging to the seventeenth century and second Picture is images of tiles belonging to the eighteenth century.


First of all draw your pattern on glass bottle by using paste. If it’s not easy for you to draw with paste on bottle first draw it with pen or try it on another glass and when you are sure that you can do it, try it on the glass bottle. Then wait until the paste becomes completely dry.



Now you can pain it according to your taste.

after the paints become dry your bots will be ready. Enjoy your Iranian patterns.

How to Hack DIY Woodworking Handicrafts Like a Pro

When it comes to woodworking, most people shy away. They think it requires a little muscle. The truth of the matter is that it doesn’t. All you need to know is how to hold the tools and when to use them. DIY projects involving woodworking can be the best ideas, especially in your home. Let me share with you my all time favorite tips and tricks for DIY woodworking handicrafts.

Understand the Different Types of Wood

If using hardwood, a DIY project is not something you wish to venture unless you have a certificate in masonry. However, you can easily hack DIY projects with soft wood. The secret is to cut along the grain. The best wood to use for DIYs is plywood. It comes with a finished look, and the boards are easy to cut through and assemble.

Create Excellent Finishes

The beauty of wood is that you can choose to leave it as it is or polish up with paint or varnish. For the paint option, remember to use oil based paints. They give the best results. If you decide to leave the wooden appearance as it is, don’t forget to make the edges smoother. Because of this, a sander is always good to have no matter what project you’re doing.
Another way to create excellent finishes is by using wallpapers. For best results, use non-woven wallpapers. You stick them on the wood using glue. Then follow the bond using a smooth ruler. This helps you to avoid air bubbles as your wallpaper adheres.


Play Around With Patterns

You might think there is not much to do with wood, but you’ll be surprised at how many unique designs you can play with. Pyrography is the official name for wood art. All you require is a solid-point burner which in this case is called a pyrography pen. Think of it as a wood soldering iron.
The tool uses heat to embed the words or artistic images on your piece of wood. The results will amaze you. An important tip to note while using a pyrography pen is that the longer you let the pen remain in contact with your piece of wood, the darker the resulting image will be. In case you think that would be too expensive for a simple DIY project, well, you are wrong. You can easily find inexpensive pyrography pens.

Invest In A Little Technology

Did you know you can create amazing 3D designs by the use of software? According to the Wood Designers, computers have rapidly started to replace hand tools. Start by installing the software and play around with the tools. You’ll get a full report on the final look, dimensions, and angles required. Consequently, you get an easier and precise plan to work with.



Global warming has become a real threat in the recent times. You can make a change by reducing your carbon footprint. And recycling bits and pieces of timber around your home is an excellent place to start. For this, you need to buy a bottle of conta-glue and a roll of good quality wood lipping. These will create seamless joints for your pieces of wood. And it’s also easier to work with smaller pieces than it is to cut a big chunk of wood.

The Bottom Line

Once you master the above hacks, wood projects will be a walk in the park for you. And the best part is that there are many diverse uses of wood. Remember for any DIY project; simplicity is key. If you don’t like the look, you can always transform wood into something fancier.


Written by Sara editor of

25th International Iranian Handmade Carpet Exhibition

25th International Iranian Handmade Carpet Exhibition From 22 Aug to 28 Aug
Rizo Pardis Parsian Company invites all the Merchants, Interior Designers, …. to visit this exhibition stand.
This exhibition has been held up every year. It provides an opportunity for the traders and suppliers to make a bigger communication and even it allows to introduce new type of business to all those who are interested in Handmade Carpets. It is good to say that our shipping at tge exhibition is free.
Persian Hand Knotted Rug is the biggest Hand-Woven Carpet event. And all the Rugs and Carpets suppliers are engaged in this big exhibition.

22-28 August 2016
The permanent location of Tehran International Chamran Highway
(pdf naghshe namayeshgah)

Those who have desire to talk to our experts and the managers , can contact us via Email and our phone number.


Phone number: +98-935-408-3823


DIY Wall Hanging: Bring Colorful Windows Back to Life!

Nasir-Ol-Molk Mosque
A view of Nasir-ol-Molk Mosque at Shiraz, Iran.


These colorful windows have something mysterious to them. They make you want to believe in all the good in the world, and to happily sing Imagine along with John Lennon.

Like cathedrals, Traditional Islamic architecture used to be full of these peaceful rainbow windows. It was not just about mosques. If you visit some old houses in Iran from Qajar and Abbasi era, you’ll see they’ve used this architecture, too. It’s a shame people can’t live in those anymore! I just adore them! I always thought if we all could eat, laugh and live with colors showering on our faces, life would finally have some harmony and peace. :)

As I told you, I always loved to live in a house with stained glass windows. So one day I figured, well, why not!? If I can’t have colorful windows, at least I can have a colorful wall hanging!

I’m so excited to show you the result! (I just don’t want to spoil that exciting feeling of “wow, I wonder what that is gonna become”. But I guess you can just scroll down and find out. But come on. Really, don’t you wanna feel curious just for a couple of minutes?)

DIY Wall Hanging Tutorial

Inspired By Islamic Stained Glass Art

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Repair Old Clothes with Felt: DIY Kitty Patch

Hey there!
Winter has come, and other than the fact that Game of Thrones season is near (Don’t tell me you didn’t think about that when I mentioned winter!) it is also time to organize the closets and put away all the old stuff. But if you’re anything like me, there are probably one or two t-shirts in your wardrobe that you love so much, but they’re either torn, old, or have permanent stains on them. We can’t let them go, and we can’t have them back. We bury them deep in our closets, hopelessly wishing for the day when the scientists finally come up with a product that magically cleans away all stains, or when a prophet rises that can miraculously repair old clothes. We just sit, hug our dear clothes, and wait.

But it doesn’t have to be like that.

It’s too soon to give up hope.
And I have an idea.

Do you like kittens?
How would you feel if those ugly stains on your clothes suddenly disappeared, and a cute kitty replaced them?
I am gonna teach you how to repair old clothes, and hide the ugly parts with a cute kitty!


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Eco-Friendly DIY Decoupage: Box Make Over with Napkins

Metal boxes, gorgeous tins, jewelry boxes, they are everywhere. You see lots of them with flower designs these days. “Shabby chic” is in, and with it comes the love for light blue, pink, and flowery boxes. Flowers have been present in Persian paintings and designs for a very, very long time. And these gorgeous boxes remind me of them.

You know, they are actually not that hard to make. In fact, I am going to teach you how to build one. It’s so simple, a piece of cake, and the result looks just adorable!! And guess what, this is a green & eco-friendly DIY, you can recycle that old wooden box you’ve had around for ages, or the one with ugly paintings, or the nostalgic one that belonged to your grandma!! Yay to recycling!


I’m so excited to share this with you! So enough from me, go down and check out the tutorial for this eco-friendly DIY yourself! diy-decoupage-box

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Vegan Recipe: Ghormeh Sabzi, the Iranian Dish

Hey There!

If you are a Paul McCartney fan, if you’re a vegan McCartney fan, or you’re a vegan who is familiar with veganish hashtags, then you probably know about Meat Free Mondays.

If you don’t belong to any of those groups, I’m gonna explain you what it’s all about. Although I really shouldn’t because you really have to be punished if you don’t like the Beatles! Paul (I’m a fan, I can call his first name) started this campaign, so that if you can’t/don’t want to omit meat from your whole life, at least you can omit it from one day of it. He himself cooks a vegan recipe each Monday and shares the pictures on his Facebook (you should totally check them out, he’s got a fancy kitchen!)

So…as today is also a Monday, I am here to teach you a vegan recipe! This is a traditional Persian dish. Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce you to the dish EVERY Iranian guy loves shamelessly, and that is a favorite of many girls: Ghormeh Sabzi! And no, it’s not that hard to pronounce once you know that “Ghormeh” means pot roast beef and “Sabzi” means veggies. As today we want to see what it’s like to be a vegetarian, I have found you a variation of the recipe from here, but I’m gonna make some changes in it. This vegan recipe replaces meat with mushrooms. And in a weird way, it tastes the same as the one with meat!


Normally, Ghormeh Sabzi is served with rice. So I’ve also included a little guide for that at the end. It’s better if you prepare both rice and Ghormeh Sabzi at the same time, so that you can serve the whole thing hot and fresh off the stove.

Let’s get goin’!

Image Credit:
Image Credit:

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Minakari on Metalware: Everything About Persian Enameling

enameled-deep-blue-minakari-on-copperIf you know about enameling, then you know about Minakari. Minakari or as some call it, “the Miniature on Fire”, is the art of decorating and coloring precious metalware like gold, silver and sometimes copper. Minakari is enamelwork, but with certain differences from the sort of enamel craft you have in mind. Enamelwork is practiced all over the world: from China and India to Europe and Russia. However, each country has found a different way to do it, not to mention the different styles each of them have managed to create! Minakari is the enamel work of Iran.

This mixture of art, chemistry and craftsmanship has been around for a quite long time. A Minakari artwork will look like a sort of painting, but it is more than that. The colors are not your simple oil and water based colors we know; they are actually powdered metal oxides mixed with glass material. So as you see, the process of “coloring” is a little bit different. I’m gonna take you step by step through all you need to know about this gorgeous art!


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