With advances in manufacturing technology, 95% of all carpet produced today is tufted. It takes about an hour to make a roll of carpet that might take eight hours to weave. To make tufted carpet, hundreds of yarn threaded needles are pushed through the primary backing fabric to form loops or tufts, which may be left as it is or cut.
A heavy adhesive coating is applied to hold the tufts in place and a secondary backing is usually glued on for strength and stability. A wide variety of styles and textures can then be created using various techniques.
- Berber –
Berber carpets look like and are named after a handmade, bulky wool carpet made by the berber tribes of North Africa and Asia. The loops are made from thick or bulky yarns of wool, nylon, polypropylene or a blend of these fibres to give a cushioned effect underfoot.
These carpets are available in an assortment of colours and may be flecked and can be either level loop or multilevel loop. The loops can be vulnerable to pulling from pets claws etc.
- Level loop –
Level loop carpet is made with loops that are all the same height, creating a flat smooth surface. This type of carpet is very durable and track resistant as well as having a natural, casual appearance even when made from synthetic fibres.
The tight loop texture tends to hide marks so offers a good blend between luxury and practicality. The loops can be vulnerable to pulling from pets claws etc.
- Multi-level loop –
Multi-level loop carpet is made with two or sometimes three varying loop heights to create carpets with a random, textured appearance.
These types of carpet are very forgiving for marks and stains and therefore suitable for high traffic areas and busy family rooms. The loops can be vulnerable to pulling from pets claws etc.
- Twist –
Twist pile carpets are one of the most popular types of carpet in the UK. The yarn is tightly twisted and heat set to give a defined, textured surface. Twist pile carpets are extremely hard wearing and less likely to show footprints and vacuum marks and are available in a range of plain and heathered colours.
Saxony carpets are made of twisted yarns, that are heat set. They consist of two or more fibres twisted together in a yarn. The tips of the fibres remain very distinct, rather than blending together which creates a luxurious deep pile and a soft, plush texture. Its worth noting that Saxony carpets tend to show footprints and vacuum marks but the more textured variations can mask this.
- Frieze –
Frieze carpets are similar to Saxony carpets, but the yarns are more tightly twisted and heat set. They have a dense, low pile surface which creates a coarse texture. Frieze carpets are very durable and tend to hide footprints, dust and dirt.
- Shag Pile –
Shag Pile carpets have a deep pile up to 50mm long. Due to the legth of the pile the yarns cannot remain upright, The result is an entangled, shaggy appearance.
- Velvet –
Velvet Carpets (sometimes called velour or plush) have a sheared level surface pile giving a smooth, soft finish. With very little twist in the yarn, the ends blend together which enhances the overall finish. These carpets tend to ‘shade’ with heavy use. Footprints show easily and the colour looks different from place to place because fibres lying in different directions reflect the light differently. A luxury for occasional rooms.
Cut and LoopCut and Loop carpets combine fibres that’s have been cut with ones that remain looped. This provides the manufacturers with a huge range of options in terms of surface texture, pattern and colour. The multi level surface is excellent for hiding footprints and stains making it ideal for high traffic areas. The loops can be vulnerable to pulling from pets claws etc.
Woven CarpetsWoven carpets are amongst the finest carpets on the market. The traditional method of making these carpets is perfect for creating patterns. Due to the intensive manufacturing process these carpets are at the higher end of the price scale.
The pile of carpet is inserted into the backing as it is woven and cut to length creating U-shaped tufts to give a velvety surface. The process locks in the fibre to create a carpet of high durability and performance retention as well as a luxury feel.
- Wilton –
Wilton woven carpets are produced in a similar way to Axminsters – the main difference being that a continuous fibre is woven all the way through. The carpet can be sheared to create a range of textured effects. The result is a high quality carpet of unrivalled durability.
- Flat Weave –
Manufactured in the same way as Wilton, flat weave is a loop pile which allows the yarn to be woven across a wider area to create a flatter more textured effect.
Bonded carpets (sometimes called fibre-bonded or fusion bonded) are created by firing fibres into an adhesive material – the fibres are not stitched into the backing in any way. The technique is principally used for commercial carpet / commercial carpet tiles.