Marla Mallett Textiles & Tribal Oriental Rugs

Our gallery specializes in antique flatwoven tribal Oriental rugs, kilims and bags, but also features tapestries, embroideries and other textile art.

Over 400 pieces are shown in the three groups below. Click on a title to see the selections. Then explore other parts of the site by scrolling down to links later on this page. More than 1400 photos illustrate a variety of textile art topics.

Antique Tribal Kilims and Bags
Ethnographic flatwoven Oriental rugs (kilims or kelims), tent bags, saddlebags and horse covers -- primarily from Turkey, the Caucasus and Morocco. Unique 19th century nomadic weavings have been selected for their graphic appeal, fine craftsmanship and importance as cultural artifacts. Fine soumak and kilim pillows have been added.

Folk Art Tapestries
Contemporary Egyptian village weavings, including tapestries by superb Harranian artists. The selections include both sophisticated wall hangings and tapestry art with primitive, naive imagery. They range from huge, dramatic pieces to intricate miniatures.

Embroideries and Other Textile Art
A potpourri: Chinese robes and embroideries, Indonesian ikats and batiks, Ottoman textiles, Bolivian and Peruvian warp-patterned weavings, Kuba raffia cloth embroideries, Coptic tapestry fragments, Panamanian molas, Indian embroideries and more.

What's New on the Site?

Our EMBROIDERIES AND OTHER TEXTILE ART section has expanded to include ancient Coptic Textiles, Kuba Raffia Cloth Embroideries, Molas from Panama, and other Assorted Textiles

I have added a discussion of restoration and conservation issues, along with photos of a few early kilims currently in the studio. For a link, go to the ANTIQUE TRIBAL KILIMS & BAGS section above.

A few illustrated articles on rug-world controversies have also been posted. Go to the PUBLISHED ARTICLES link below.

Now a 2nd, Revised Edition of Marla's Book

Want to understand the tribal weaves?  This definitive guidebook explains the techniques used by nomads and villagers in Asia and North Africa.  It explains -- from a weaver's perspective -- why each structure produces distinctive patterning, then shows how to identify variations. Click on the title above to read what others think about the book, and for information on ordering a copy.

490 detailed photographs and drawings.  For collectors, scholars, curators, conservators, weavers and dealers.

Woven Structures Update
Read about recent technical research findings. See what discoveries other collectors are making as they examine their treasured rugs more closely. Send questions or comments, build a simple loom for experiments, or participate in the End Finishes Project.  

Criteria For Selecting Tribal Textiles
What qualities make a tribal rug or textile a "collector's piece"?  When is restoration appropriate?  What should beginning collectors avoid?  Marla discusses her criteria.

The Basic Tribal Weaves
Slit tapestry, soumak, brocading, knotted pile and other basic weaving techniques are introduced.

Egyptian Village Tapestries:
An Experiment in Creativity

How one man's inspired work with young village children resulted in a delightful new folk art form.  

Mounting and Hanging Textile Art
Several ways of hanging rugs, kilims, tapestries and other weavings are described.  Simple methods of mounting small textile objects, delicate fabrics or fragments are also explained. 

Through Josephine's Eyes:
Tribal Life in Anatolia

Photos by Josephine Powell and notes on an exciting new project unfolding in Istanbul.
A Few Published Articles
Illustrated discussions by Marla of rug-design origins, terminology squabbles, and a probable rug-world hoax. 
A Tribal Flatweaves Bibliography
Marla's favorite books devoted to the kilims, bags and trappings made by Middle Eastern tribal weavers.
Odds & Ends:  Personal Notes
Scrapbook snapshots and notes on rug community events.

1690 Johnson Road NE
Atlanta, GA  30306   USA

Phone:  404-872-3356
       or Toll Free:  1-877-542-0841

Our gallery is open by appointment. Please contact us for more information on any of the textiles. If you would like to see a larger, more detailed scan of any piece, just let us know. Textiles can usually be sent on approval to US addresses.

Marla Mallett

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