Antique Bread Sofreh, Afshar Tribes, Kerman Province, ...

Item Ref
BM/M1

The visual impact from this bread sofreh (flat-weave) is stunning.
Imagine it hanging on a wall and seeing it as woven art every day, what pleasure it would bring. Sadly, I don't have a wall on which to hang it, but if I did, it wouldn't be on my website!!
Bread sofreh were specifically made for kneading the dough and preparing the flat-bread. I remember my trips to Iran to find these sofreh and finding them caked in flour with no design or colour obvious, until of course, they were washed. Then, and only then, could they fully be appreciated, in their simplistic designs and fabulous natural colours, as woven works of nomadic art.
This fabulous sofreh was made during the early 20th century by Afshar nomads in Kerman province, southern Persia, and I see the vertical zig-zags as the symbolic depiction of flowing water, like bread, important ingredients in the sustenance of life in harsh climates.
Size: 1.28m x 1.28m (4' 2" x 4' 2").
£1,400

Antique Flat-Weave, Kurds of Eastern Anatolia.

Item Ref
BM/NZ

Here we see a beautiful quality flat-weave, woven in two sections due to the narrow looms used, and made by Kurdish nomads around 1900 in eastern Anatolia.
The flat-weave has lovely natural colours and is in very good condition.
Size: 2.10m x 1.50m (6' 11" x 4' 11")
£1,150

Antique Kilim, Qashqa'i Tribes, Fars Province, South-West ...

Item Ref
BM1281

An attractive kilim made by Qashqa'i nomads in south-west Persia during the early 20th century and in excellent condition.
Size: 2.90m x 1.52m (9' 6" x 5' 0")
£950

Antique Soumak Carpet, Daghestan/Kuba Region, Eastern Caucasus. ...

Item Ref
BM/SMK

This stunning decorative Soumak carpet has wonderful, soft natural colours and is in very good overall condition bar some tiny areas requiring minor restoration. Acquired in Spain, it was apparently acquired by the family in 1909. I estimate the age is somewhere between 1880 and 1900.
Size: 3.20m x 2.24m (10' 6" x 7' 4").
POA

Antique Shahsevan Mafrash Panel Flatweave, Moghan Region, ...

Item Ref
DR2

Here we see four Shahsevan mafrash (bedding-bag) panels expertly sewn together to make a floor rug. The panels are stunning - stylised peacocks dominating the complete piece - a most attractive way of displaying individual panels.
Size: 1.88m x 1.04m (6' 2" x 3' 5").
POA

Flat-weave, Shahsevan Tribes of Varamin, North-Central Persia. ...

Item Ref
BM1241

Visually stunning! The symbolic depiction of flowing water in this 'eye-dazzler' flat-weave made in the Varamin region of north-central Persia by Shahsevan nomads around 1880.
Size: 2.00m x 1.32m (6' 7" x 4' 4").
£1,500

Antique Moj (Cover), Qashqa'i Tribes, Fars Province, ...

Item Ref
MAC18

Moj means 'wave'in Persian. They are distinctive flat-woven covers used as blankets, bed-covers and for covering the storage-bags around the sides of the tent. They were woven by Qashqa'i tribes in Fars province, south-west Persia in a technique referred to as balanced twill-weave, in two equal parts and then sewn together and finished with elaborate tassels. The most exciting feature of the Moj is the interplay of natural colours within the weave and it is this distinctive colour effect which gives this flat-weave its name - 'wave' possibly the depiction of flowing water! Moj are now a rarity as with all tribal weavings dating back pre-1900.
Size: 3.00m x 1.78m (9' 10" x 5' 10").
£1,150

Antique Kilim, Qashqa'i Tribes, Fars Province, South-West ...

Item Ref
MAC32

I love the horizontal bands of different natural colours in this stunning kilim, woven by Qashqa'i nomads in Fars, south-west Persia during the second half of the 19th century.
Size: 2.82m x 1.40m (9' 3" x 4' 7").
£1,250

Antique 'Tasheh' (Wheat Sack), Luri-Bakhtiari Tribes, Western ...

Item Ref
BM/T2

'Tashehs' or wheat sacks, were, as the name implies, used for containing wheat and loaded onto the flanks of the pack animals during long migrations. They were made as seen after which the sides and base were brought together and sewn-up with goat-hair, leaving an opening at the top into which the wheat was poured. Each wheat sack had its own identity - a bottle-shape knotted-pile centre which was a totemic symbol for each family. In the 1940s, plastic and gunny sacks arrived in the bazaars of Iran and started to replace the age-old woven wheat sacks. This period saw the demise of the tasheh and today they are rare. This sack retains its original goat-hair hanging loops and as you hopefully might imagine, make most attractive wall-hangings in the home.
Size: 1.30m x 1.02m (4' 3" x 3' 4").
SOLD

Antique 'Tasheh' (Wheat Sack), Luri Bakhtiari Tribes, ...

Item Ref
BM/T1

This gorgeous 'tasheh' or wheat sack was made by Luri Bakhtiari nomads during the second quarter of the 20th century and although both sides have been reduced, it will make a most attractive wall-hanging.
Tashehs were totally utilitarian items, used for containing wheat and loaded onto the flanks of pack-animals during long migrations. Woven on ground looms as you see it, the sides and base were brought together and sewn up using goat-hair.
By the 1940s, plastic and gunny sacks had arrived in the bazaars of Iran and these began to replace the age-old tashehs to the point that they simply died out. Today, old tashehs are rare.
Size: 1.12m x 0.87m (3' 8" x 2' 10").
SOLD

Antique Double 'Tasheh' (Wheat Sacks), Luri-Bakhtiari Tribes, ...

Item Ref
VS3

It is rare to find a double 'tasheh' (wheat-sack) and this is one I acquired in Iran some 30 years ago and it has just come back to me through the people down-sizing. Illustrated in my book 'Tribal Rugs - Treasures of the Black Tent' under the chapter on the Bakhtiari, this tasheh was made and dated 1945 - the last period in which these beautiful nomadic pieces were made.
In this case, the double tasheh would have been split down the centre and then each individual piece would have the sides and base brought together, sewn up with goat-hair, leaving an opening at the top in which to pour the wheat. The central bottle-shape was always knotted in woollen pile - each one having its own family identity - and symbolically I believe this to represent the bounty of God. Today, tashehs are best hung on the wall to make fabulous decorative wall-hangings - tribal works of art.
Size: 2.20m x 1.02m (7' 3" x 3' 4").
SOLD

Antique 'Tasheh' (Wheat Sack), Luri-Bakhtiari Tribes, Western ...

Item Ref
VS2

This wonderful 'tasheh' was made by Luri-Bakhtiari nomads around 1900. Made as a wheat sack ('tasheh' in Persian) on the loom as seen now, both sides would be drawn together, as well as the base, and sewn up with goat hair leaving an opening at the top into which could be poured the wheat. The central part of the tasheh always had a bottle-shape in knotted-pile which I believe was the family motif and symbolically represented the bounty of God.
Sadly, these tashehs were no longer made after the 1940s when plastic and gunny sacks arrived in the Iranian bazaars from the West. Therefore why should a nomad take months to weave such useful sacks when the nomad could barter for plastic sacks! A sad end to a wonderful tribal art. Today, tashehs make attractive and decorative wall-hangings.
Size: 1.07m x 1.00m (3' 6" x 3' 3").
SOLD

Old Dining Sofreh, Kamo, Central Persia.

Item Ref
BMac4

I love the simplistic visual attractiveness of the sofrehs from the village area of Kamo in central Iran. This one, not dissimilar to the one on the front cover of my recently printed 3rd edition book 'Tribal Rugs - Treasures of the Black Tent', depicts mountains and I suspect, rivers flowing through the area, absolutely charming in every way. However, in my years of dealing and handling Kamo sofrehs, I have never seen a 'dining' sofreh - those are the longer, narrow flat-weaves which were used to spread on the floor at mealtimes and bread, bowls of food, tea etc. spread out on the dining sofreh whilst the tribes-people would sit around cross-legged. All the sofrehs I have seen and handled have been 3'-4' square 'bread' sofrehs - used for kneading the dough on. This is therefore a rare and stunning flat-weave in excellent original condition.
Size: 1.38m x 0.58m (4' 6" x 1' 11").
SOLD

Antique Flat-Weave, Labijar/Maimana, Northern Afghanistan.

Item Ref
BM1269

A visual masterpiece from the Labijar/Maimana region of northern Afghanistan in excellent condition and dating to the early 20th century.
Size: 4.25m x 1.90m (14' 0" x 6' 3").
SOLD

Antique Dining Sofreh, Timuri Tribes, Western Afghanistan. ...

Item Ref
BM1

Dining Sofrehs were spread out in the tent during mealtimes and bowls of food placed upon it. The nomads would then sit around the sofreh, cross-legged, and enjoy eating and good conversation. This truly magnificent sofreh with its intricate brocading throughout, was made by Timuri nomads around 1880-1900 and is in excellent condition. It is a fabulous example of these now very rare sofrehs.
Size: 1.75m x 0.76m (5' 9" x 2' 6").
SOLD

Antique Soffreh, Baluch Tribes, North-East Persia

Item Ref
BM684

This beautiful Soffreh (dining-flatweave) can only be described as 'stunning'! It is absolutlely complete - in mint condition - and was made by Baluch tribes in Khorassan province, north-east Persia during the last quarter of the 19th century. I suspect the tribal attribution might be 'Djhan Begi' Baluch. The natural camel-hair field incorporates a stylised 'tree-of-life' - symbolically representing the 3-level universe to these nomads - and the madder-red border is knotted in pile. Look at the fantastic brocaded skirts at each end - extremely intricate. I suspect this piece was made for a very important member of the tribe who may well have commissioned it from the best weaver in the tribe. This soffreh will make a wonderful wall-hanging.
Size: 1.37m x 0.76m (4' 6" x 2' 6").
SOLD

Old Bread Sofreh, Kamo, Central Persia.

Item Ref
BM516

This stunning bread Sofreh was made in the village of Kamo around the early 20th century. The bread sofreh was a woven cloth on which the dough was kneaded. Such sofrehs were extremely minimalistic in design and reflects the individual primitive nomadic art of the weaver where she expresses her own thoughts without keeping to her tribe's rug designs. In need of a good wash, the colours on the natural undyed ivory sheep's wool are all vegetable. A rare find these days.
Size: 1.25m x 1.12m (4' 1" x 3' 8").
SOLD

Antique Qashqa'i Sofreh, South-West Persia

Item Ref
BM273

A rare and beautiful little sofreh (dining flatweave) woven by Qashqa'i tribes and dated (top centre) in the Islamic calendar 1320 - 1902 in the solar calendar. Dining sofrehs were, as the name implies, used for placing bowls of food on, while the tribespeople would sit around and eat. Such pieces were often reserved for guests.
Size: 86 x 61cm (2' 10" x 2' 0").
SOLD

Antique Bread Sofreh, Azeri Tribes, Azerbaijan

Item Ref
BM690

This is a rare example of Azeri tribal work - a bread sofreh or flatweave for kneading dough to make bread.
It has been woven in two parts - due to a narrow nomadic loom - and joined up the middle. The colours are superb and the border is dramatic. A great visual piece and would look stunning hanging on a wall.
Size: 1.09m x 1.25m (3' 7" x 4' 1").
SOLD

Antique Dining Sofreh, Timuri Tribes, Western Afghanistan. ...

Item Ref
BM974

This lovely old dining sofreh or dining flatweave was originally used as a weaving spread on the floor of the tent during mealtimes and bowls of food placed upon it around which the tribes-people would sit and eat. Woven by Timuri tribes in western Afghanistan around 1900, the sofreh is in excellent condition with beautifully brocaded skirts at each end and the depiction of 5 'eyes' on the natural camel-hair field where the number '5' is a protective symbol. Together with the 'eyes', there is a doubling of protection!
Size: 1.32m x 0.69m (4' 4" x 2' 3").
SOLD

Timuri Tribal Sofreh, Western Afghanistan

Item Ref
BM301

A superb dining Sofreh (dining flatweave) of the Timuri tribe woven in different techniques of flatweave circa 1890. The work involved - bearing in mind the primitive looms these nomads used - is simply fantastic. This is a truly wonderful example of Timuri work. Pieces of this quality are rare.
Size: 1.27m x 0.66m (4' 2" x 2' 2").
SOLD

Old Dining Sofreh, Baluch Tribes, Khorassan Province, ...

Item Ref
BM840

Dining sofrehs were the equivalent to table-cloths in the West - flat-weaves spread on the floor of the tent on which were placed bowls of food, bread, etc. The tribes-people would then sit cross-legged around the sofreh and eat. This attractive sofreh has a natural camel-hair field with a bold 'tree-of-life' in the centre and woven by Baluch tribes in Khorassan, north-east Persia around the early 20th century.
Size: 1.91m x 0.78m (6' 3" x 2' 7").
SOLD

Antique Kilim, Qashqa'i Tribes, Fars Province, South-West ...

Item Ref
BM712

Recently arrived from Iran, this stunning vegetable-dye compartmentalised design kilim has a fabulous palette! Made by Qashqa'i tribes at the end of the 19th century, the kilim is an unusually small size and is in excellent condition.
Size: 2.03m x 1.30m (6' 8" x 4' 3").
SOLD

Antique Bread Sofreh, Qashqa'i Tribes, Fars Province, ...

Item Ref

This beautiful bread sofreh was woven by Qashqa'i nomads around 1900. Bread sofreh were used for kneading the dough in the preparation for making bread. They were generally caked in flour and until washed, it was often difficult to see colour and design. Completely utilitarian, this sofreh has a gorgeous madder-red field and multi-coloured border. Such pieces represented the true 'art of the nomad'.
Size: 1.24m x 1.14m (4' 1" x 3' 9").
SOLD