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American Rugs & Carpets

American rugs are diverse in origin, material, technique, and design. Some of the most well-known examples are hooked rugs and the whimsical designs of 1960s rugs.

American hooked rugs are indigenous to the Northeast. Prior to the mid-1800s, imported carpets were a luxury of the wealthy class. With the opening of trade with other countries, new materials became available, including the burlap sacking used to ship trade goods from the West Indies. The wide weave of the burlap allowed for easy manipulation of textiles using strips of fabric and a framework of boards. Rug hooking allowed the lower economic classes to create artistic floor coverings at little cost, and rug hookers incorporated their own flair into the pieces, ensuring that each rug was an original. Hooked rugs began to be hung as wall art in the 1930s, when there was a resurgence of interest in the artform.

Beginning in the mid-1900s, American rug designs embraced a fun and modern style that followed the art movements of the time. Pop artist Robert Indiana scavenged abandoned warehouses in New York for material for his sculptures. After his discovery of brass stencils, Indiana’s works came to life with bright colors and short, powerful words. Known by the title “Classic Love”, Indiana’s famous Love Rug was created for a Christmas card for the New York Museum of Modern Art in 1964.


Quick Facts

  • Grenfell Industries was started in Canada in 1893 as a way for poor fishing families to make extra money by selling hooked rugs to tourists, but today these designs are coveted by collectors
  • The earliest American rugs were made for tables and beds, rather than the floor
  • A Robert Indiana original “Classic Love” rug sold for $1,794 at Bonhams auction house in 2010

Recommended Items at Auction

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Karastan Kashan Medallion Rug 9.8 x 12'
Oct 02, 1:00 PM EDT
Karastan Kashan Medallion Rug 9.8 x 12'
by Four Seasons Auction Gallery
Est: $600- $800
$1102 Bids
American demilune hooked rug, ca. 1900
Oct 05, 4:00 PM EDT
American demilune hooked rug, ca. 1900
by Pook & Pook Inc.
Est: $400- $600
$2001 Bid
AMERICAN EAGLE HOOKED RUG, PROBABLY NEW ENGLAND, 1920-1950 39 x 27 in.
Sep 29, 10:00 AM EDT
AMERICAN EAGLE HOOKED RUG, PROBABLY NEW ENGLAND, 1920-1950 39 x 27 in.
by Potomack Company
Est: $30- $50
$101 Bid
Karastan multicolor Kirman rug, circa 2000s, 5'9"x9'3".
Sep 28, 6:00 PM EDT
Karastan multicolor Kirman rug, circa 2000s, 5'9"x9'3".
by Apple Tree Auction Center
Est: $0- $0
$1001 Bid
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GEOMETRIC HOOKED RUG IN STAINED GLASS PATTERN OF WINE, CREAM, BLUE, NAVY, GREY, AND BROWN.
Sep 29, 2:00 PM EDT
GEOMETRIC HOOKED RUG IN STAINED GLASS PATTERN OF WINE, CREAM, BLUE, NAVY, GREY, AND BROWN.
by Amelia Jeffers
Est: $150- $250
$700 Bids
Contemporary Area Rug
Oct 09, 12:00 PM EDT
Contemporary Area Rug
by Main Auction Galleries
Est: $800- $1,200
$4000 Bids
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MOUNTED HOOKED RUG WITH A HORSE.
Sep 29, 2:00 PM EDT
MOUNTED HOOKED RUG WITH A HORSE.
by Amelia Jeffers
Est: $100- $200
$500 Bids
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William Morris Arts and Crafts Style Carpet
Oct 08, 10:00 AM CDT
William Morris Arts and Crafts Style Carpet
by New Orleans Auction Galleries
Est: $1,000- $1,500
$9000 Bids
American felt penny rug, late 19th c.
Oct 05, 4:00 PM EDT
American felt penny rug, late 19th c.
by Pook & Pook Inc.
Est: $800- $1,200
$4000 Bids
WOODWARD GROSVENOR & CO. LTD WILLIAM MORRIS 'THE LILY' RUG, MODERN
Oct 12, 10:00 AM BST
WOODWARD GROSVENOR & CO. LTD WILLIAM MORRIS 'THE LILY' RUG, MODERN
by Lyon & Turnbull
Est: £250- £350
£1200 Bids
American hooked rug with dog, late 19th c.
Oct 05, 4:00 PM EDT
American hooked rug with dog, late 19th c.
by Pook & Pook Inc.
Est: $400- $700
$2000 Bids
American Geometric Hooked Rug
Sep 29, 11:00 AM EDT
American Geometric Hooked Rug
by Stair
Est: $600- $800
$3000 Bids
American hooked rug, early/mid 20th c.
Oct 05, 4:00 PM EDT
American hooked rug, early/mid 20th c.
by Pook & Pook Inc.
Est: $300- $400
$1500 Bids
American hooked rug, late 19th c.
Oct 05, 4:00 PM EDT
American hooked rug, late 19th c.
by Pook & Pook Inc.
Est: $300- $500
$1500 Bids
American hooked rug with cats, late 19th c.
Oct 05, 4:00 PM EDT
American hooked rug with cats, late 19th c.
by Pook & Pook Inc.
Est: $300- $500
$1500 Bids
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Robert Indiana (American, 1928-2018) Classic Love (Red and White), Master Contem
Sep 29, 10:00 AM CDT
Robert Indiana (American, 1928-2018) Classic Love (Red and White), Master Contem
by Heritage Auctions
Est: $6,000- $8,000
$5,0000 Bids
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Donegal Carpet
Oct 08, 10:00 AM CDT
Donegal Carpet
by New Orleans Auction Galleries
Est: $1,200- $1,800
$1,0000 Bids
American hooked rug with doves, late 19th c.
Oct 06, 9:00 AM EDT
American hooked rug with doves, late 19th c.
by Pook & Pook Inc.
Est: $300- $400
$1500 Bids
Amusing American hooked rug with cats
Oct 06, 9:00 AM EDT
Amusing American hooked rug with cats
by Pook & Pook Inc.
Est: $400- $600
$2000 Bids
American hooked rug, late 19th c.
Oct 05, 4:00 PM EDT
American hooked rug, late 19th c.
by Pook & Pook Inc.
Est: $300- $500
$1500 Bids
American hooked rug with dog, late 19th c.
Oct 05, 4:00 PM EDT
American hooked rug with dog, late 19th c.
by Pook & Pook Inc.
Est: $300- $500
$1500 Bids
American hooked rug with sheep, dated 1900
Oct 05, 4:00 PM EDT
American hooked rug with sheep, dated 1900
by Pook & Pook Inc.
Est: $500- $800
$2500 Bids
Mid-Century Modern Bauer Pink Flower Shag Rya Rug 2/2
Oct 01, 12:00 PM EDT
Mid-Century Modern Bauer Pink Flower Shag Rya Rug 2/2
by Public Sale Auction House
Est: $150- $300
$200 Bids

Sellers Who Sell American Rugs & Carpets


Pook & Pook Inc.

Pook & Pook Inc.

Amelia Jeffers

Amelia Jeffers

New Orleans Auction Galleries

New Orleans Auction Galleries

Heritage Auctions

Heritage Auctions