Originally Posted by turboman808
I can't imagine paying over five hundred for a item I am going to walk on and wear out. How they can last generations I would really like to know. Please enlighten me.
Machine made rugs lose material, and there isn't really that much there to begin with. I have a mass-market modern wool rug (about $400 from West Elm) where a decent chunk of "fur" ends up in the vacuum cleaner every week. At this rate it'll be bare in a few years.
High-end handmade rugs are tightly knotted and have more material, so it doesn't gradually shed away to nothing. As long as you treat it well (ie. don't spill drinks all over it, don't walk over it in work boots every day) it'll last a ridiculously long time.
Not sticking up for the $17k rug here as I certainly wouldn't buy one, but there is an argument to be made that such an item isn't such a bad deal if you're in a position to be spending that much on furnishings.