Most Oriental Rugs are rectangular and have a field and border. One of the most common designs is that of a central medallion either alone or or with designs radiating from it. The field may also be composed of small repetitive patterns, depict a scene or be divided into several compartments.
The border frames the field and may be simple lines or intricate patterns which project into the field. Certain border designs are quite popular and may include single or multiple lines or symbols such as the Greek key, and wandering vine, the stylized turtle and scroll.
Some of the most popular field design are the tree of life, hunting scenes and prayer rugs. Prayer rugs are easy to recognize because the rectangular field contains an arch or similar shape which comes to a point at one end. These designs represent the prayer niches used by Muslims in a mosque. Often images of religious articles associated with Islamic worship, such as lamps, ewers and combs are contained in the pattern.