Carpet weaving was a major industry in the British Isles from the early 17th century forward. The sheep breeds that predominated in the highlands produced wools that were spun into worsted yarns that could withstand the wear and tear necessary for good floor coverings.
In the 18th century a style of double cloth carpeting called ingrain, Scotch or Kidderminster carpet became popular. Originally geometric designs were woven. By the late 18th century figurative designs were popular.
Men trained in carpet weaving emigrated from the British Isles to Connecticut, the Hudson Valley, and western Massachusetts. Because weavers had particular training in specialized areas of weaving, they used their knowledge to parlay carpet weaving into coverlet weaving in rural areas of America.
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