Sherpa Rugs: How to Get This Cozy Style

Hand Tufted Kristan Shag from Feather Shag by NuLoom

Want to add a touch of coziness, comfort, and luxury to your home without an incredibly high price tagWell, even though this may seem like an unrealistic wish, it’s not. There are certain things you can add to your home that embodies all of these elements, and they don’t cost you a fortune.

One such element is a sherpa rug. Sherpa rugs work well in any home, no matter what the interior design style is. You can place this cozy rug on the floor, or you can drape it over a chair or sofa to add some texture to any room in your home.

But, before you buy a sherpa rug and place it in your home, there are some things you need to know.

What is Sherpa?

FSS118A from Faux Sheep Skin by Safavieh

First things, first- what exactly is sherpa?

Sherpa is a type of fabric that is made from cotton, acrylic, and polyester. It’s meant to look and feel like fleece from sheep, but it is entirely made from synthetic materials.

It is also sometimes referred to as “faux shearling”. And, it gets its name from the Sherpa people of Nepal, as it closely resembles their clothing.

In addition to being used as a rug material, Sherpa is also often used to line clothing, such as coats, hats, mittens,  and boots. This is not only because it looks great, but also because it does a wonderful job of keeping one cozy during the winter months.

Many people also sometimes get sherpa confused with shearling or fleece, as they look very similar. However, these materials are not the same. Here’s what makes them different:

  • Shearling: Shearling is the fabric that is actually made from sheep (some people just call it sheepskin) In order, for something to be considered “true shearling”, the wool must still be intact when it is dyed and processed. Obviously, this makes shearling quite a bit more expensive than sherpa. However, Sherpa is still a very high-quality, durable material.
  • Fleece: Fleece is similar to sherpa in that it is also made from polyester. However, in general, fleece tends to have a shorter pile (the raised surface of the fabric, measured by its height).

Despite, these differences, it is important to note that some companies mistakenly use these three terms interchangeably.

Read on to learn how to bring the cozy style of a sherpa rug into your home.

The Benefits of Sherpa Rugs

Erin Moroccan Diamond Tassel from Diana by NuLoom

So, why should someone choose sherpa out of all of the other rug materials? As we said earlier, sherpa is made of entirely synthetic materials. For those who have kids or pets, this is a huge plus, as synthetic materials are generally much easier to clean than materials made from animals. And, even though sherpa is not made from animals, it is still incredibly warm. When you sink your feet into a sherpa rug, you’ll be able to feel the difference in warmth immediately. In fact, sherpa is actually thought to insulate better than shearling can.

Of course, we also can’t forget that sherpa is much less expensive than its animal-made counterparts. And, for those who are vegan or just animal-loving, you can rest easy knowing that ‘no sheep were harmed in the making of your rug’.

Lastly, there are so many different ways you can style this rug. You would be hard-pressed to find a room in your home that a sherpa rug does not look good in.

How to Choose the Right Sherpa Rug

Renata Moroccan Shag from Airy Shag by NuLoom

Now, you’re probably wondering, “Out of all the options there are for sherpa rugs out there, how do I choose the right one?”

Even though sherpa rugs are made out of synthetic materials and they are less expensive, quality is still a big concern.

Here’s what you should consider when purchasing your sherpa rug:

  1. The Color: Sherpa rugs come in a wide array of colors, and the one you choose will really depend on your own personal preferences. However, if you want your sherpa rug to look like it’s made from real fur, then make sure to choose one that has a natural ivory tone to it. Natural ivory is also nice because it will match pretty much any color scheme you already have in your home.
  2. Feel: Arguably, the most enjoyable element of a sherpa rug is its soft, silky feel. If your immediate reaction when you touch your sherpa rug isn’t, “Oh my! That is so soft!”, then you haven’t found the right sherpa rug yet!
  3. Size and Shape: It may seem like a no-brainer to just plop your sherpa rug on the floor. However, many people find that they enjoy draping their sherpa rug over the couch, a bench, or over a chair. Therefore, before selecting your sherpa rug, think about where you would like to place it, as this will help to determine what size and shape you need to select.
  1. Fiber Length: If you want your sherpa rug to look like it’s made from real fur, you will also want to pay attention to its fiber length. Real sheepskin rugs have a minimum fiber length of 65mm. Obviously, no one is going to take out a measuring stick to see just how long your sherpa rug fibers are, so don’t worry about being too exact. But, in general, the longer and denser the fibers are, the more authentic it looks.

Keep these things in mind, and you will have the perfect sherpa rug for your home.

How to Style Your Sherpa Rug in Your Home

Melyssa Tribal Shaggy from Expo Lux by NuLoom

So you’ve finally found the perfect sherpa rug. Now how should you style it in your home? As we’ve stressed throughout this article, you really can’t go wrong when it comes to styling your sherpa rug (especially if you choose one that’s a natural ivory color). But, it can still help to keep some style guidelines in mind.

When it comes to floor placement, large sherpa rugs look great as the focal piece of the room. In fact, if you haven’t furnished a room yet, you could style the whole space around your sherpa rug. Black, chestnut browns, ambers, and beiges are all colors that look great next to an ivory-colored sherpa rug. You could place your sherpa rug on top of your brown hardwood floors, or, drape it across a leather chair or sofa.

Sherpa rugs also make great bedroom decor pieces. To add some texture to a minimalist room,  place a sherpa rug near the front of your bed, and place a small foot bench on top of it.  You could even place a sherpa rug at the foot of a baby’s crib, or, if it’s the holiday season, drape it around the base of your Christmas tree to add an extra dash of coziness.

How to Maintain Your Sherpa Rug

Hand Tufted Kristan Shag from Feather Shag by NuLoom

Sherpa rugs really never go out of style, which is why it is so important to maintain your rug so you can enjoy it for years to come. As we said earlier, one of the biggest benefits of a sherpa rug is that it is easy to clean and care for because of its synthetic fibers. But, that doesn’t mean you can just neglect it.

Here are a few quick care tips for your sherpa rug:

  • Avoid the Sun and the Dryer: Direct heat can have a damaging effect on your sherpa rug. Therefore, make sure you that if your sherpa rug gets wet, you avoid placing it in the sun to dry it or throwing it in the dryer. Instead, let it air dry naturally.
  • Shake and Brush: Every few weeks or so, take your sherpa rug outside and give it a good shake. And, to keep the fibers looking their best, give it a good brushing with a wide-toothed metal brush. You can brush it using a sheepskin brush, or you can pick up a dog brush from your local pet store.
  • Spot Clean (And Do it Fast): Spills will happen, and when they do, you need to make sure you act fast. Use some sheepskin detergent and a damp cloth to gently blot at the stain.
  • Baking Soda: With all the foot traffic it will receive, your rug is undoubtedly going to have some funky smells to it. Get rid of these by sprinkling on some baking soda and working it into the fabric with your hands. Let it sit for a few hours, and then shake it out.

Follow these tips, and your sherpa rug will look as good as new.

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