A Wilton carpet is a woven wool carpet noted for having up to, but never more than, five colors per pattern. These carpets are available in many patterns as well as textures such as looped or a cut-velvet appearance. These carpets date back to Wilton, England where they were first made hundreds of years ago.
When the market for England’s raw wool supply died down, Wilton was turned into a weaving town for cloth manufacturing. It’s proximity to two rivers, the Nadder and the Wylye, made it a good location as water is a necessity in textile manufacturing. Wilton also became known for producing carpets when its first carpet loom was patented in 1741.
Types of Wilton carpets include the face-to-face, single frame and multi-frame. In a face-to-face Wilton carpet, machines weave two backings attached by pile yarn. The yarn is then cut to form two cut pile carpets.
A single frame Wilton carpet is also known as a plain Wilton and it is produced as a looped pile carpet which may either stay looped or be cut by blades added to the weaving machine. Cut and loop pattern rows are also possible in the single frame technique and may be formed with multi-colored yarns.
The multi-frame method produces Wilton rugs in textures that other machine types cannot achieve. The multi-frame rug is also known as a Jacquard Wilton carpet. As the multi-frame technique involves colors of yarn strands being carried inside the backing, a thick durable carpet is formed with a padded look and feel to it.
The Wilton carpet is known for its strength and durability and is a popular choice for commercial areas as it can stand up to high traffic. Patterned or sometimes solid color, Wilton carpeting is often used on airliners and passenger trains as well as in hotels. A Wilton carpet can also be used in residential applications, but Wilton area rugs are more common for domestic use than the wall-to-wall carpeting.