Ardabil rugs originate from Ardabil located in the province of Ardabil Province in northwestern Iran, 639 kilometers from Tehran. Ardabil has a long and illustrious history of Azerbaijani carpet weaving. The reign of the Safavid Dynasty in the 16th and 17th centuries represented the peak of Azerbaijani carpet making in the region. Ardabil rugs feature motifs that are very similar to Caucasian rugs, but with more motifs and objects woven into the borders. The colors are also lighter. The patterns are predominantly geometric and the most common layouts on Ardabil rugs are medallions, multiple connected diamond-shaped medallions, and all-over octagonal shapes. The most recognized design found on Ardabil rugs is the famous Mahi (Herati) design - a diamond medallion and small fish throughout. Some modern weavers have begun to favor bold geometric patterns over the traditional Mahi (Herati) design and have added colors such as turquoise and purple to the more traditional red, pink, ivory, green, and blue.
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