October 15th, 2023
Shading on Carpets!
Permanent Pile Reversal Shading is a phenomenon that can appear in any cut pile carpet. Its occurrence is random and its causes are largely unexplained. It is also commonly referred to as watermarking, pooling or puddling. A cut pile carpet that has ‘shaded’ will show areas lighter or darker than the surrounding carpet pile. This variation is caused by the reflection of light from pile tufts which come to lay in different directions, Permanent Pile Reversal Shading is not unlike the brushed appearance of other cut pile fabrics such as suede, velour and velvet, although the appearance change in a carpet that has ‘shaded’ will be permanent.
Permanent Pile Reversal has been associated with cut pile carpet for many years, in fact well before the advent of machine made carpets. Despite extensive research and development of methods and techniques to minimise the occurrence of shading, the characteristic is not predictable. As Permanent Pile Reversal Shading will have some impact on the appearance of a carpet, consumers should consider the possibility that it may occur when buying a cut pile carpet. Reputable manufacturers apply warnings on Permanent Pile Reversal Shading to their samples and major retailers are well informed about the phenomenon and will advise the consumer prior to sale. Tracking and footmarking may also appear in cut pile carpets but these are not permanent and should not be confused with Permanent Pile Reversal Shading.
What is known about Permanent Pile Reversal Shading?
Despite extensive research and development of methods and techniques to minimise the occurrence of shading, the characteristic is not predictable.
However, the consensus of expert opinion about Permanent Pile Reversal Shading is that:
- It can occur in any cut pile carpet (or rug) including hand knotted, tufted, woven, bonded, knitted or hand-made carpets and rugs
- It can occur in carpets made from all carpet fibres and blends of different fibres (e.g. nylon, wool, acrylic, polyester, polypropylene and their blends)
- Its occurrence will not lead to premature wear of the carpet and it will have no effect on the durability of the carpet
- It has not been linked to methods of installation.
PILE REVERSAL is not considered a manufactured defect!