Benefits of Woven vs Tufted Carpet. Does Backing Really Matter?

Pile and backing of woven wool stanton carpet.jpg
This is a picture of the pile (left) and woven backing of a piece of Stanton designer wool carpet.

On the left of the above picture,  you see the front (pile) of this woven wool piece by Stanton. Now look at the back on the right. You can see how cleanly the fibers are locked in place for clear lines and excellent visuals.

All carpet consists of two major components – pile and backing – with some having secondary backings added for various reasons (cushion, etc…) Most retail customers never see woven carpet because the low- to middle-end residential market is dominated by tufted goods.

So why discuss woven carpet?

Woven carpet has many advantages, although it costs a bit more than your average tufted piece. Woven carpets offer architects, designers  and end-users distinct advantages over other pieces on the market in terms of aesthetics, performance and value. The Axminster looms used to make woven carpet offer unique flexibility in color and design.
Each piece of pile yarn is individually woven into place yielding complex and intricate designs created with pinpoint precision and high-definition. During the weaving process, yarn is woven around warps (vertical fibers) and locked in place with horizontal strands. The carpet is one piece instead of having an applied backing plus the pile and added latex that can break down over time and delaminate.

Another benefit is less material waste. Woven carpets made with 100% New Zealand wool can be some of the finest you’ll ever see. The added benefit of using less material with the same resultant feel can save dollars for your project.

Here is an example of a tufted piece showing the secondary backing, coated with latex. Over time, the latex can break down and the secondary backing can separate or “delaminate” and cause ripples and bubbles that cannot be stretched out.

If you’ve ever felt a swatch of woven carpet, you’ll have noticed how supple the whole piece feels, whereas a tufted piece would feel rigid unless it was left in the warm sun to soften.
Tufted carpet backing and pile

Woven carpets differ from tufted construction in terms of the weaving process. Axminster looms weave pile and backing materials together in one step, eliminating the problem of delamination from high foot traffic and rolling loads. This gets rid of the potential for bubbles, ripples, and potential premature product failure, that happens in heavy traffic areas with tufted carpet.

An added benefit of wool is absorption/ release of moisture during periods of high and low humidity assisting with stabilizing the thermal properties of the space.

We stock woven wools from Karastan, Stanton, Nourison and Kaleen and offer amazing pricing. Email Chris with any questions and to see what we currently have in stock.


Chris Moline
Chris Moline LEED AP, CAPS is our General Manager of Retail Sales

Author: carpet1beltsville

Chris Moline is our General Manager of Retails sales. He's a former active-duty Marine, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu purple belt under Carlos Catania at Bowie MMA, and father of three amazing children.

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