Third Phase Navajo Blanket
Antique Navajo Rug or table runner, finely woven in reds, blacks and natural creams in a serrated diamond pattern without top and bottom borders, placing it in the pre-1920's era.
The red is vivid and likely derived from a natural source like cochineal as it has not run with cleaning as so many aniline weavings of this design and period. The black is natural as it is collected from the black sheep of a still-raised heritage breed of churro sheep. The cream is also natural and a carded mixture of the two will produce the grays shown.
The best and oldest rugs have the most flaws in the design, always a detail to look for in an antique piece. The artists that produced these believed that perfection was not in balance with their worldview and the often deliberately made sure the designs did not come out flawlessly. This textile demonstrates this characteristic around 80% from the left where the diamond pattern is disrupted and the cream background darkens slightly where wool from a different lot was introduced.
Three of the four corner tassels remain and a red yarn binds the top and bottom. Arrow points terminate the serrated diamonds in a rare and creative flourish of the gifted weaver who tied each knot.
43" long by 20" wide
George uses this runner on a library table he made that sits in his study. On this table also rests vintage pocket knives from his Grandfather, pottery from his own collection and the silver lighter his father lit his cigars with while he was growing up. Ruby always threatens to wear it, her adventurous eye looking for a way to do traditional things in unexpected ways...