Sometimes white knots will show up after washing a hand made rug. This means that you did
a great job removing all the soil that hid those white knots, congratulations! But, your
customer may not see it that way. They may think that you damaged their valuable rug.

What are white knots? All hand knotted rugs have white knots. These are rug foundation
yarns that are tied together. Most often, undyed cotton is used as foundation (warp and weft)
yarns. These yarns are only so long, so they need to be tied together to be long enough.
Sometimes the foundation yarns break during weaving. So they need to be tied back together
again. Sometimes the knots\yarns are not white, they can be dyed different colors.

Sometimes they are wool, silk or some other fiber type. So white knots are not always white.
Usually these foundation knots are buried in the face pile and are not visible. However with
time and wear of the face pile, these knots can and do become visible. Often soil hides them
and cleaning reveals them. So, it is important to find some in your pre-inspection to establish
them as a pre-existing condition. Close inspection can reveal them, do not forget to look at
the back to find them. More can show up after cleaning, so talk to your customer about white
knots and educate them about their hand made work of art.

What can be done with white knots? First, educate your customer. If you do this before
washing as part of your pre-inspection, it makes it a win-win situation. If you do it after
washing, where the white knots come as an unexpected surprise, your customer may believe
that you are just making excuses and that you are somehow at fault. Some customers don’t
mind the white knots knowing that is a characteristic of hand knotted rugs.

Whatever you do, do not try to cut the knot out as this will become a hole in the rug. A couple
of good options include: have your rug repair technician push the white knot in to the
backing. Or use a permanent marker of the correct color to hide the white knot. Or you can
mix up dyes to color match the white knot to the surrounding face fibers. Charge accordingly.