Since the mid 18th century, the small English town of Axminster produced carpets with oriental and floral patterns that were in high demand in the higher society. Originally hand-woven, the elaborate process was later replaced by various machine weaving procedures, keeping the impression of oriental carpets with rich patterns, by controlling every single thread through technical sophistication.
Today, the Axminster-gripper-technique has the greatest importance. A jacquard machine registers thread sections according to patterns in the respective color and introduces them into the goods. Nowadays, the term Axminster carpet stands for high quality-looking material, extreme durability and almost limitless possibilities of patterns.
FROM ORIENTAL CARPET TO MODERN DESIGN
Carpets produced with the Axminster technique were assembled by hand to be able to offer a cheaper alternative to the popular but expensive Orient carpet. Today, only a small amount is manufactured into adapted carpets. Mainly meter goods are produced, that are then used everywhere in the world to cater to the need for individual patterns and durable carpets. The Wilton-technique is related, but only simple patterns like stripes or monochrome woven fabric are possible. Different to the Axminster-gripper-technique, the colors that are not used in one spot of the design are running subversive of the carpet and do not contribute to the density of the carpet.
SELECTING THE RIGHT COLOR OF THE YARN
The specialty with Axminster is the complete coloration of the yarn before it is processed. That means, that even when the pile yarn is on the side, the same color appears all the way to the ground. This will make the color field look more even than with superficially printed carpets. Indeed, the printing process reaches the highest resolution of the design, but even with less refinement of the carpet design with Axminster and a rather pixelated appearance in the draft, the pattern will later appear softer and more organic in the carpet, because the color contours get “messy” with the gliding action of the machine.
LONGLASTING CARPETS FOR HIGHLY FREQUENTED AREAS
The pole yarn in the Axminster carpet shows a higher tear strength compared to the tufting method, because the yarn is embedded tri-dimensionally in the base fabric. Therefore, Axminster carpets are more durable than machine tufted goods and they are perfect for areas with high through traffic. A second back is therefore not needed; moreover the back receives additional stability through a backing agent. The textile is not affected by use as much and becomes more durable. It also makes cleaning easier and maintenance of the flooring is cost effective.
AXMINSTER CARPETS IN OFFICES, HOTEL ROOMS AND AIRPORTS
They are perfect for various places, but different thread counts are needed according to the area of use. The notation 7x7 describes a density of 7 pole burls in an inch length and width. While the density 7 is fixed in the width, it can be extended to the most stressable 7x12 in the length. Typically, the density 7x7 or 7x8 is used in hotel rooms. Carpets with a dense pile of 7x9 and up are used in offices or hallways. Robust 7x12 can be even used for high traffic areas like airports and such. However, a new design has to be created for every density, because the pattern would be contorted lengthwise.
CURRENT CARPETS WITH SHINY DETAILS
A current floor trend to set some highlights is the use of the Shiny Axminster. Shiny nylon threads are used in some areas, which set the focus particularly when surrounded by a mat yarn look. Nevertheless, the shiny yarn has less endurance than the other, more textured yarn; therefore it should only be used outside of the usual walking tracks.
DURABILITY AND DESIGN
The Axminster is the most stable way in itself of machine carpet production. The thickness of the yarn is often higher than with other techniques, so instead of 10 needles per inch in the width, only 7 are used with the Axminster loom. Compared to hand tufted carpets, the impression of an Axminster carpet is less luxurious, but it holds the comparison with simple machine tufted goods easily and collects points with a great color variety and freedom of design.
The Axminster convinces also in its dimension stability in dry and wet condition. This is important when hallways cross or when serving trolleys or similar are pushed on the carpet. The wet stability is especially important in areas with high frequency that are impossible to maintain, until the carpet is completely dry after it was cleaned.
COLOR SELECTION OF CARPET DESIGNS THAT COVER ENTIRE AREAS
The special weaving technique enables full design freedom regarding the pattern repeat. Proper works of art arise for the floor. Up to eight colors are possible for the color selection, also for example embedded designs with trims. When Axminster carpets cover areas from wall to wall the design is adjusted to the area that is later carpeted. This makes it possible to design an especially harmonious and individual room concept. Just like with any other flooring, the color selection and the design should adapt to the conditions of the area of use. Just the decision to use a darker color for a highly frequented area can extend the lifetime of a carpet significantly.
Axminster carpets can be applied with glue or with tension – the technique depends on the use of flooring and has to be decided upon on a case-to-case basis. The lasting tension technique does not need glue and is less common in Germany, but offers high walking comfort and extends the lifespan of the carpet at the same time. For areas with underfloor heating gluing is more suitable. The special dimension stability facilitates custom-fit carpeting and precise pattern repeat of the area.
ROBUST CARPET IN THE PROPERTY
These characteristics make the Axminster carpet the perfect flooring for almost every area of your property: versatile in color and design, extremely durable, long lasting and easy to clean.
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