Gabbeh rugs are made by the nomadic Qashqai tribes of southern Iran. They are rough cut and long piled rugs of rich color and best quality wool. They are sometimes referred to by the heritage of the specific tribe by which they are woven, such as “a Lori rug,” or by the name of the city in which they are most often traded, such as “a Shiraz rug” or “a Shiraz Gabbeh.”
The word “Gabbeh” literally translates to “in the rough,” and it is an accurate description of this style of Persian rug. Gabbeh carpets are woven on makeshift ground looms constructed both of materials that are kept and hauled for long distances by the nomadic tribel, and also of materials that are found at each site where the tribe sets up camp. Due to the fact that part of the loom must be found at each site, a wide variety is introduced. Thus, these rugs are usually somewhat irregular in shape. But, for what they lack in perfectly uniform shape they more than make up for in character, durability and uniqueness.