Prior to 1984, no machines were used in the production process. The whole process from the sorting of the wool to the packaging stage of the finished product was carried out by hand process. The production process of Nepalese Tibetan carpet includes:
Wool from Tibet is generally imported in raw form requiring careful sorting to pick-out the foreign particles such as vegetable materials. The Tibetan wool also requires washing to remove dirt and executive greases which is followed by sun drying for two to three days. The Tibetan wool has a strong good fiber length is imported in scoured form, good luster and a high resilient value. The New Zealand wool is of 36 micron, 100 mm barb length and is identified as type 128. British wool meeting regulatory standards have also started being available in the market.
The carding process allows the fiber stand to flow smoothly when spinning. This is also the stage for blending different wools and to ascertain the ratio of different origins. Traditionally, carding was performed by hand and machine carding was introduced when the industry grew. However hand carded product is still available if a customer so desires.
The carded wool is spun into yarn by hand using a charkha (Spinning wheel). The thickness of the yarn depends on the quality of the carpet and generally a 3 ply yarn is used .
The traditional pot dyeing method has been largely replaced by machine dyeing in closed Chambers. Dues containing harmful substances such as AZO are banned and dye-stuffs from renowned international manufacturers are used. These dyes have a high degree of fastness. The dyed yarn has to be dried in the sunlight for one to three days depending on the weather. Pot- dyeing and vegetable (natural) dyeing are still being used by some manufacturers.
Carpet knotting is an art by itself. The workers known as the weavers are well trained and skilled in their art and have a very high versatility in knotting. One or more weavers work on a loom depending on the size of the carpet. Each weaver makes individual knots row after row. The designs are chartered out on a graph and the weaver translates the graphic designs into knots on a carpet. The dyed yarn is made into balls and scissors, iron rod, levers, comb beaters are used as tools.
The quality of carpet depends on knotting and its design. The carpets are made on various knots (40, 60, 80 ,100, 150 ,200 and 250) as per requirement. The higher knots shows smoothness and attractive. Nowadays carpets are made with various type of yarn like as Hemp, Silk, Allo, Viscus, Pasmina etc which show the carpet more attractive and imaginary.
The finished carpet taken off from the loom and the designs & patterns are curved out by scissors.
The trimmed carpet is washed with the fresh water & chemicals. The washed carpet is dried in the sunlight up to four or five days. While the bulk of the carpets are manually washed in Nepal a notable quantity is washed in Switzerland.
Generally Export proceeds must be received through an irrevocable letter of credit , Conditioner Letter of Credit ,Cash against documents, advance payment etc.
Handmade carpet can be used as long as you like it has to be cared well while using. Though we can estimate, it lasts for at least 30 years all knots and quality.