Woven fabrics are among the most important items in Turkish cultural history, which dates back thousands of years. Carpets, kilims and other plain woven works are particularly prominent in the Anatolian lands, where many sites of archaeological and ethnographic importance have been uncovered. With many examples held in both museums and private collections, these works are made of organic raw materials that become fragile over time or due to environmental conditions, which makes conservation treatments necessary. Conservation methods can be classified into two man groups, being active or passive. The present study implements a treatment classified as an active conservation method, detailing the application of a wet cleaning treatment that was applied to a kilim that has been dated to the 19th century. Following damage identification, documentation and analysis of the kilim, methods were developed to remove the staining and to conserve the kilim at its present status. All analyses, tests and treatments were carried out in a laboratory environment, and were recorded and documented. The stains on the kilim were removed using an active non-ionic surface agent called STR V18, which was developed as part of the present project. The effects of the treatment were evaluated through a comparison of color from measurements and microscopic images taken prior to and after the treatment. The comparison was made on the basis of the principle of color difference, and the results showed close to perfect matching. Furthermore, the microscopic images showed no loss of texture or fiber resulting from the applied treatment.
Keywords: Kilim, Wowen, Conservation, Restoration, Wet cleaning