If there is one essential piece of home decor that every room needs, it’s an area rug. Homeowners with hardwood and tile floors know that a soft, attractive rug is a must-have for their space. But area rugs aren’t just for hard floors. The right area rug layered atop wall-to-wall carpeting can do wonders for pulling a space together and completing a look.
With all of the shapes, sizes, materials, and patterns available, selecting the right rug for your space can be a daunting task. That’s why we’ve compiled this easy guide for using an area rug.
First, let’s talk placement. It’s critical to measure your room and take the shape of your living space into account. Generally, the sides of your area rug should extend underneath each piece of furniture. Let the sides of the rug either reach past the backs of each piece of furniture, or end somewhere beneath your sofa, loveseat and chairs. For instance, if you’ve got a sofa sitting opposite a love-seat with a coffee table in the middle, the rug shouldn’t rest solely beneath the coffee table. Rather, it should extend beneath both the sofa and the loveseat. But be careful! Bigger isn’t always better. There should be a minimum of six inches of space between the sides of the area rug and your walls. Anything else will simply look like you’re just trying to mimic wall-to-wall carpeting.
Surya’s Sonoma in Cognac
Of course, the living room isn’t the only place that area rugs are necessary. In the dining room, it’s best to place the rug directly centered beneath the dining table, with at least a foot of rug space extending past the chairs. In the bedroom, there are two options. One is to place a larger rug centered beneath your bed and nightstands, with equal amounts of rug showing past the ends of each piece of furniture. The other option is to place the rug slightly off-center, leaving the nightstands resting on the floor, and . The second option should still be used with a large rug, as smaller rugs situated solely under the foot of the bed end up looking out of place.
The next important design aspect to consider is shape. If your living room is rectangular or square, it’s best to stick to a rug of the same shape. Don’t place a round rug in a rectangular living room, unless you have a unique feature, such as a corner fireplace or accent table. In this case, you may do better with a round or octagonal rug. Rugs anchor your seating area, so they can mimic its shape. The same goes for eating areas – they should complement the shape of the table.
NuLoom’s Hand-Hooked Nancey
Once you’ve measured your space and determined the shape of the rug you’re looking for, it’s time to start shopping! On PlushRugs, we have a powerful search engine to narrow down our 35,000 rugs to one that you love. To get started, consider:
Material: Wool is the best material for area rugs, since the natural properties of the fiber make it durable and dense. Synthetic rugs will cost less, especially if they’re power-loomed. Sisal and jute were traditionally “summery” rugs, but are now being used year-round as an organic natural base to sustainable designs. Flat-woven rugs come in a variety of styles, and materials vary from synthetic, to wool and cotton; they are perfect for a wide range of designs.
Pile: A low-pile rug might not feel as soft and squishy, but it will be easier to vacuum. High-pile and shag rugs can make a dramatic statement, but it’s important to consider floor care with these rugs. They aren’t easy to vacuum, so if you have pets that shed or children that leave crumbs on the floor, stick to low or medium-pile rugs. All rugs should be vacuumed with the beater-bar off, but these durable rugs are soft and dense.
Color: If you’re starting from scratch, this part is easy. Simply find a rug in colors you love, and choose your paint colors and furniture based on the rug. However, if you’ve already invested in furniture and done your painting, this part can be tricky. It’s not always necessary to match the rug to your walls, but it is important that your furniture doesn’t clash with your rug. All-matching sets are a thing of your grandma’s parlor, not your living room. A color scheme with varying shades or a pattern with complementary colors is a much easier palette with which to decorate.
Design: Traditional rugs can still add a hint of formality to a design, but modern styles can also make a bold statement in a room. Area rugs can be geometric, floral, damask, striped, ikat, or an unimaginable range of new designs.
Rug pads: On hard floors, you’ll want to be sure to place a rug pad roughly equal to the size of the rug beneath the rug to protect your floors and preserve your rug. Adding an area rug does more than provide added softness. It also prevents slipping and bunching of the rug, which could be dangerous to people walking on it.
With a little time and attention to detail, adding an area rug to your space can make an empty room feel and alive.