Experts restore Yıldız Palace’s 120-year-old ornate carpet
Following more than two years of strenuous work, a team of six experts has finished the restoration work of a 468-square-meter vintage carpet, which once adorned the floors of a chalet in Yıldız Palace, a vast complex with several former Ottoman pavilions and villas located in Istanbul’s Beşiktaş district.
With the scope of the works conducted, the 120-year-old Hereke carpet, one of the largest carpets in the inventory of the National Palaces Directorate, is being planned to be exhibited in the ceremonial hall of the Yıldız Chalet once again in the near future.
“We started the restoration works of the carpet together with the restoration of the Yıldız Chalet in 2018 with a team of 10 experts. But due to the pandemic, we had to reduce the number of people in our team to six,” said Mustafa Köksal, the head of the team.
Informing that his team took out the carpet from the chalet to wash it in a 500-square-meter pool that was specially built to conduct the cleaning works of the carpet in the palace’s garden, Köksal said that it took two months for the carpet to dry out completely.
“After dusting the carpet thoroughly, we transferred the carpet to a site given to us to conduct the cleaning and restoration works,” he said.
Köksal said that after his skilled team’s intricate work of restoring the vintage carpet using quality knitting tools such as needles, scissors, combs and hoops, the carpet’s lifespan has increased to another 50 to 100 years.
Halil Telli, one of the experts who has been working in the carpet business for more than 20 years, said he “was proud to be a member of the group.”
“To repair a carpet from the era of Abdülhamit II was a big honor for me,” he told the state-run Anadolu Agency on April 14.
The carpet was knitted in 1897 in the Hereke Silk Fabric and Carpet Factory at the order of Abdülhamit II.
The carpet was designed by the palace artist Emil Meinz at the time and was later exhibited in the ceremonial hall of the Yıldız Chalet on the visit of German Kaiser Wilhelm II.