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Carpet By Definition – What Are Carpets?

Monday, 30 March 2015


What is carpet?

red carpet, carpet, wall to wall carpetAccording to the OED, carpet is “a floor covering made from thick woven fabric”, or alternatively “a thick or soft expanse or layer of something”. Carpeting is one of the most popular flooring options available today and dates back to the 5th Century B.C. Historically, these products were used in the Orient to cover walls or floors. Today, they are used as wall-to-wall flooring in homes and businesses across the world. There are a wide variety of flooring options, but carpets are by far the most popular flooring option in the UK.

An extremely popular flooring option - why?

One of the many advantages of carpet is its outstanding versatility when it comes to installation. It can be easily fitted in any kind of room, as well as on stairs. Additionally, it offers exceptional thermal and acoustic insulation. Unlike wood, tile, or alternative flooring, carpet reduces excess noise, such as heavy footfalls and echoes, and it can keep your home warm and cosy by acting as an insulating layer that prevents heat loss. With rising energy costs and efforts to be more environmentally conscious, carpeting is a great way to insulate your home, reduce waste and lower heating costs. Many manufacturers are taking this even further by producing their carpets using recycled materials and eco-friendly production processes. Thus, carpeting is an exceptional flooring choice for those seeking to reduce their impact on the environment, while benfiting from a warm and comfortable flooring.

The manufacturing process

carpet, tan carpet, wall to wall carpet

A concern for many when considering this type of flooring is the maintenance and potential work necessary for upkeeping it. The industry has made many innovations over the years, giving us easy to clean and extremely durable synthetic fibres. These advances don’t just include the pile materials, but also the production processes. Carpets, both natural and synthetic, are produced in such a way that you will get the most longevity and quality available. One of the most common techniques used when producing carpets is flocking, which is a style of weaving. This weaving technique produces a tufted fibre by weaving the thread through the primary backing. This method has existed for centuries, though modern technology has improved it to make it more precise and efficient, which in turn makes the flooring more durable and hardwearing. The u-shaped loops that result in the process create the tufted and durable structure of the well-known tufted carpets. The type of material carpeting is constructed from can affect their texture, feel, quality, and appearance. Carpets are produced using a variety of materials, including a wide variety of organic materials such as cotton, jute, flax, hemp, and sisal, or even silk and wool. In addition, synthetic materials such as polyamide, polyacrylic, and polypropylene fibres are also used for piles. Each material offers different benefits like extreme softness, warmth, and durability. There are benefits to both types of fibres, including eco-friendliness, great longevity, and low maintenance.

Unlimited styles

kitchen carpet, carpet tiles, family carpet

Generally speaking, carpets are available in a huge amont of styles. To name a few of the main categories, you have berber, plush, textured, frieze, and many others. These styles each offer different looks, feels, and benefits. Loop pile carpets (such as berber), for example, are known for their extra durability, while the shag ones (such as frieze) create an elegant and soft  surface. The surface is not the only distinguishing feature of a carpet’s design, as the backing is just as important. The top pile fibres are typically glued to their backing, which consists of organic or synthetic materials, giving it added stability and durability. The combination of the backing and pile creates the final product—a carpet for your home or business.

Infinite design options with modular carpeting

As we’ve already discussed, the amount of choice you have when it comes to carpeting is paramount. The possibilities become endless when you consider texture, colour, materials, and other features. This flooring is available in a wide variety of colours and designs, and with the new addition of products such as carpet tiles, the design opportunities are limitless. Carpet tiles are a carpeting option available in individual modular tiles, which can be mixed and matched to form interesting patterns, or to create a broadloom design that emulates wall-to-wall caperts. Some of the major benefits of carpet tiles are their ability to be replaced at low cost if individual tiles becomes damaged or stained, their easy installation, and simple maintenance.

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