The History Kilim Design Shoes and Slippers

The history of kilims and kilim shoes dates back thousands of years ago in Turkey, centrally in Instanbul. These shoes - typically seen as smoking shoes, smoking slippers, design slippers, and design loafers - are unique, one-of-a-kind shoes.

What is Kilim?


A kilim is a pileless, tapestry-woven rug or other textile with geometric designs in rich, unique colors. They are traditionally made in parts of the Middle East and neighboring regions.

Kilim has a long history that spans thousands of years and many empires. The method of weaving kilim and it’s intended use have changed with each coming and going of a new empire.

Antique kilim rug used for smoking and designer slipper and loafers

A Brief History of Kilim

Kilim has been used for a variety of purposes as far back as ancient times. It was often at the center of day-to-day life, as the method of weaving kilim made it highly durable.

A few traditional uses include:

    • To cover and protect mosque and yurt floors
    • Kept as a source of pride or an heirloom for many cultures of nomadic people
    • Prayer rugs
    • Saddle covers
    • Wall hangings
    • Bags
    • Mule shoes

Turkish Kilim

Turkish kilim is by far the most used and highly regarded method of weaving kilim, which is why it is used in all of our products.

Kilim originated in the Anatolia area of Turkey. Situated between the Black and Mediterranean seas. Nowadays called Istanbul, it is often thought of as one of the great crossroads between ancient civilizations.

Today, many of the shapes and symbols found in Turkish kilims can still be traced to these ancient times. The bright colors and diverse designs still found in Turkish kilim is attributed to the region’s colorful and often convoluted past.  

Qualities of Turkish Kilim

  • Durable
  • No pile means that the treads have not been cut and that the fabric is reversible
  • Handmade, each is unique
  • Traditionally made of wool or fabric

Kilim with Kindness

At Kilim with Kindness all of our kilim products are designed with history and kindness woven into each product. We are breathing a fresh new life into the ancient textile. The merging of Eastern and Western cultures has been part of kilim's history since it’s beginning, as Anatolia (the place of it’s founding) is thought to be the crossroads between East and West. 

The qualities of kilim that made it so valuable in ancient times is exactly why we use it to make all of our premium handmade travel leisure goods. The long history of kilim proves its ability to retain a sense of timeless allure, and like everything at Kilim with Kindness, it is self-evidently stylish.