Choosing Carpet Part 2: Carpet Styles
So you’re thinking about choosing new carpeting for your home? Last month, we looked at some of the major materials that carpets are made out of, and when to choose each one. This time, we’ll talk about the different styles or weaves – the way the fibers are woven together to make a carpet. Different styles may be optimal in different rooms or areas in your house, depending on the traffic, the desired softness, and your preferences.
Common Carpet Styles
When choosing the best carpet styles for your home, you may be looking for one that masks dirt and stains well, one that is easier to clean, or one that is more luxurious and soft.
These different weaves are often described by their “pile,” which simply refers to the density and height of the fabric fibers. The pile can be short if the fibers are more or less flat, or long and shaggy. The pile can also be looped, if the fabric loops are left intact, or the loops can be cut, creating a cut pile. The pile height is measured from the top of the carpeting to its backing. The five of the most popular weaves used in modern carpets are Saxony, textured, frieze, sculptured, and Berber.
- Saxony. Also known as plush, Saxony carpeting is a cut pile carpeting that is well-loved for its softness and velvety appearance. It may be a good choice for bedrooms and formal rooms, but probably less preferable in high-traffic areas and areas that have to be cleaned frequently. Vacuum tracks and footprints are usually visible on this style of pile, since the cut is at a uniform height.
- Textured. The textured style is also a cut pile, but it’s designed look better under high-traffic conditions. It uses two different fiber hues to mask dirt, and the various different lengths of fibers prevent footprints and vacuuming patterns from showing up.
- Frieze. Known for its durability, frieze weave is the longest-lasting of the cut pile carpets. The twisting of the fibers creates an even more varied texture that retains its appearance even with heavy use and frequent cleaning. Compared with the approximate 5-year lifespan of the average Saxony and textured carpets, frieze can last over 20 years if properly maintained.
- Sculptured. The combination of cut fibers and looped fibers makes this style relatively durable and it tends to hide dirt well. Look for higher weight yarns to get an even more durable sculptured carpet. Keep in mind that seams may also be more visible in large rooms.
- Looped or Berber. Berber carpeting is a patterned looped weave which can have a very elegant look. The loops can be small or large, and in general the smaller loops are more durable. While it does have a lovely appearance, Berber may be a poor choice with children, pets, and in high-traffic areas, since it snags easily and is often harder to clean.
Keeping Weaves Intact
Whichever weave you end up choosing, the lifespan of your carpet will be optimized by having a maintenance plan in place. From the easiest to clean to the most difficult to clean styles, professional cleaners will always do the best job keeping your carpet at its best. Be sure to call Royal Carpet Cleaners to find out how they can help you keep your new carpet looking and feeling new.
Check back next month to find out how to identify a good-quality carpet and a good deal.