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How to Choose the Best Area Rugs for Your Home

One of the most difficult things to decide when you become a homeowner is the kind of flooring that you would install in your home. If you’re one of those who are clueless about where to begin, there are tips that can help you, not just in choosing your flooring material but also the area rug designs that would go well with it.

Carpets or area rugs are one of the design elements that will always be considered a home décor status. Just like other flooring materials such as hardwood, tiles, and laminates, these floor covers help increase the stylishness of any room.

Area Rug and Carpet Benefits

Imagine sinking your feet in a soft, plush area rug. Now double the comfort by picturing yourself getting out of bed in the morning and sinking your feet into a wool area rug.

One of the trending bedroom area rug materials is anything that is super plush and comfortable. What you just need to prep for is that special vacuum cleaner that will help you maintain the lushness.

<img src=&quot;vacuumcleaner.jpg&quot; alt=&quot;red vacuum cleaner on a carpet flooring.&quot;>
Now that fall is just around the corner, carpets and plush area rugs are, once again, becoming a warm option (both literally and figuratively). This is that warm, cozy surface that kids and pets love staying on.

Carpets and wool area rugs also offer an insulating effect that would allow you to keep the thermostat at a lower level. This should reduce the heating bills, especially during the coldest months.

Walking on area rugs also means you have a resilient material under your feet. It is actually easy on your joints which is great for homes with elderly who are already suffering from bursitis or arthritis.

The busiest households can also count on carpets and big area rugs as effective sound buffers. Condominium dwellers are even bound by bylaws to install the wall-to-wall type of carpeting to keep sounds at a bare minimum.

Synthetic materials used in manufacturing area rugs also have lower VOCs compared to the unnatural flooring options such as laminates.

<img src=&quot;woolarearug.jpg&quot; alt=&quot;wool, hand-knotted area rug with Turkish design.&quot;>

Mix and Match Flooring Materials

When trying to make a decision on a particular flooring, know that it’s alright to mix up quite a bit. There is no need to stick to just a single texture. Smart mixes of various floorings can be an effective move.

High traffic areas such as the kitchen, hallways, and family rooms need hard products like laminates. Luxury areas have a different requirement. Bedrooms, lounge rooms, and other such areas need carpeting and area rugs for style and emphasis.

Find floors that will complement one another. This is the key to making a functional and lovely living space. Find a tone that is suitable for your home and one that suits your preference. Be sure to follow tried and tested rules such as using warmer tones (reds, yellows, browns, and oranges) when your home has high ceilings.

Remember that warmer hues do not automatically mean darker tones. Balance the hard floor and area rug fusion by using the right pairings of hues. The tone and color of every floor should come from like color families. Say no to visual jarring.

Wooden floors and area rugs are never an either/or choice. A rustic home needs a mixture of both. The floor should be able to withstand high traffic while showcasing your personality.

The designers of today prefer to use wood and carpet for the utmost visual impact. Many people would surely agree that none can offer a more striking look. A wooden floor is an effective element that can visually tie different rooms. It is beautiful, easy to clean, durable, and elegant. It is also visually warm so it is easy to make your home feel more comfortable when you install it.

Get the most out of hardwood floors by knowing when to use light and dark-colored wood. Lighter colors should be able to open up cramped spaces. Darker woods can create an intimate space out of an expansive area.

Be sure to pair hardwood flooring with unique area rugs or carpet.

<img src=&quot;leathersofa.jpg&quot; alt=&quot;a living room has a brown leather sofa that sits on an area rug.&quot;>

Some Hardwood Floor No-No’s

  • Never match the colors of your wood floors with the wood cabinets.

  • Don’t use wood in high-traffic rooms.

Say Yes to Area Rugs

Area rugs have a lot of benefits to offer. First, they are able to mute noise and are even able to keep your feet warm. Choose the right color and material so that you won’t have to clean and deodorize all the time.

Area rugs are great to use inside bedrooms and living spaces. These are areas where warmth and comfort are most needed, hence, you should seriously consider buying area rugs for those spaces.

If you want to anchor furniture groupings, then use an area rug and carpet duos. Be sure to highlight analogous textures and neutral hues.

Carpets are unwelcome in rooms where food is often prepared. They shouldn’t also be matched with other carpets in separate rooms so that there is a clear division of space and functionality.

Area rugs are a totally different story altogether. You can have the same materials, patterns, and textures in different rooms so long as they do not clash with the theme and functions of those spaces.

Area rugs are more versatile than carpeting and hardwood flooring. These pair beautifully with tiles, carpet or wood, and just about any material that you could think of. They can also define spaces while enhancing the décor all around.

Area rugs can also protect the floor from wear, tear, and dirt. Make sure that you choose the right size of rugs. The majority of rooms, including the bedroom, dining room, and living room need no less than 8×10 foot rug. Breakfast nooks do not need these 8x10 rugs since they can make do with a 5×7.

<img src=&quot;arearug.jpg&quot; alt=&quot;contemporary hand-knotted wool area rug.&quot;>

Area Rug Placement

Have you ever wondered if there are rules with regard to area rug placement? This can prove to be a difficult decision to make especially with regard to the approximate size that must be placed in certain rooms. What is the size that is considered proper? What colors and patterns are okay and what is bordering gaudy?

A popular rule is that the area rug should be big enough to slide under those sofa front legs. Any chair that is arranged for a seating ensemble should follow this basic rule. There are also those who believe that all the furniture legs must sit on the area rug.

If these conflicting rules confuse you, then don’t be bound by them. Use your artistic eye in determining the style of the area rug.  And before looking at a rug gallery, be sure to measure your space. What you need is not just a visual effect that will increase the desirability of the rooms in your home but also a correctly measured piece of flooring element. 

Rule #1: Front Legs On, Hind Legs Off

<img src=&quot;womanlyingonsectional.jpg&quot; alt=&quot;a woman lies on her back, on a leather sectional, as she reads a magazine.&quot;>

Okay, let’s just agree that this is the most basic rule of them all. To make a room more gorgeous, let the front legs sit on the area rug while the other two legs should be off. This is an approach that works in any given situation. The area rug must be a tool that connects different fine furniture pieces. It must be proportionally sized so that it creates a sense of balance.

Rule #2: A Few Legs On

<img src=&quot;sectionalinlivingroom.jpg&quot; alt=&quot;living room with a gray semi-circle sectional with pillows.&quot;>

Before you go to the next approach which is to place all the legs of a chair onto the area rug, why not place just the front legs of the sofa while the rest of the other chairs’ legs sit on the floor and off of the area rug.

This is more effective when the color of the rug contrasts with the color of the flooring.

Rule #3: All Legs On

<img src=&quot;livingroom.jpg&quot; alt=&quot;a living room with a sofa, chair, area rug, artwork, and floor lamp.&quot;>

This third rule will allow all the design elements to come together. Those legs that are firmly planted on the area rug unify the rest of the design.

Rule #4: All Legs Off

<img src=&quot;livingroom.jpg&quot; alt=&quot;neutral colored living room with leather couch, pillows, area rug, and other accessories.&quot;>

If you are bringing in just a small area rug, then it would be impossible to have the legs sit comfortably on it. In this case, it is best to have none of the legs sit on the rug. This will create a different look for your home, one that creates a pop of pattern.

Rule #5: 18 Inches All-Around

<img src=&quot;highriseliving.jpg&quot; alt=&quot;high rise living room with neutral-colored sofa, chair, area rug, and accessories.&quot;>

This next rule has become the standard for many years. This states that you must leave approximately 18 inches all around the area rug. This means that 18 inches of bare flooring must be seen around the edges. This is the traditional proportion and may not work if you are trying to embrace the open space concept.

It is best to use this rule inside a small room.


Rule #7: 12-18 Inches Round the Bed

When it comes to installing the area rug in a bedroom, make sure that the bed remains as the star of the show. Leave 12 to 18 inches all around the king or queen size bed. The larger the room, the bigger the extension around the bed.

Basically, you need to show that there is an area rug under the bed. The bed must not cover all of this flooring piece.

Rule #8: 24 Inches Around the Table

It would be easier to pull out the chair if there are no less than 24 inches of area rug that are extended from the table’s edge. This allows the chairs’ legs to be on the rug at all times.

Rule #9: Cover Walking Areas

The area rug must cover the vastness of the walking area in an entry or hallway. This is for both safety and comfort reasons. This kind of area rug placement is especially applicable to high traffic areas.

I always begin a room with the rug; it is literally the foundation of the space. I then go on to the furniture. - Lee Radziwill 

Other Ways of Using An Area rug

Do you have a family heirloom rug that you have been aching to display but you do not want to wear and tear? Or maybe you have a carpet that you acquired from your travels that you now want everyone to enjoy.

The rug as an artwork or wall hanging is a beautiful and unique idea that not a lot of people are willing to do but it is an idea that’s worth trying.

There are various ways to hang that area rug on the wall. Whatever method you choose is dependent on the weight as well as the size of the rug. The location and your personal preference will also affect the rug installation.

Hang with Velcro

The first method that you can use to hang a rug that you bought from an area rug outlet is by using Velcro. This is a method that is preferred by most museums. The Textile Museum displays its rugs successfully using this simple method.

The Velcro consists of two strips called the loop tape and the hook tape. The rough part is called the hook tape while the loop is that soft, fuzzy part.

When you’re using Velcro, be sure to sew the back part of the rug onto the loop tape. This should be sewn through the whole top edge. If you’re hanging a high-value or heirloom rug, then you should use a strip of unbleached, plain canvas or muslin that’s wider than the Velcro strip used. This will prevent any damage to the rug when it comes in contact with the Velcro or other rough materials.

After stitching the Velcro loop tape onto the muslin strip, sew the muslin to your area rug. A handmade rug must also have a hand-sewn muslin. Use nothing but a whip stitch so that no damage would occur on the rug.

Hiding the stitching is as easy as using a heavy cotton thread that has a color that closely resembles that of the rug. Be sure to carefully tread the needle between the fibers.

When you’re ready to attach it to the wall, the hook tape can then be stapled to a thin piece of wood that comes in the same width as the area rug that you’re about to hang. You can then mount this piece of wood to the wall. Use two Velcro strips can then be connected.

Just check that the untreated wood won’t touch any part of the rug as this will cause damage. This is why canvas or muslin must be used as an outline so that the wood will be sealed.

For bigger and heavier rugs, just repeat this process, making sure that there are about 3-4 strips of wood that are vertically stacked every few feet. These will help support the weight of the area rug.

Hang with a Curtain Rod

The second method requires a curtain rod. Just sew a cotton casing right on the back of the area rug. Be sure to do this by hand. Form a tube so that the curtain rod may be inserted there. You can then mount the rod onto the brackets which you set up on the wall.

Make sure that the rod is strong enough to provide the necessary support that the area rug needs. For a decorative look, you can use a rod that extends to each edge of your area rug. You can use ornamental finials to cap your design.

Without regard to the method used, you must always remember these cardinal rules when hanging an area rug

Never hang it near any heat or electrical source.

Never pin or nail it to the wall as this will cause irreparable damage to the rug.

Area Rug Maintenance

Dust will always be the enemy of carpets and area rugs. Since this is so, they can also become a source of allergens that could cause various breathing problems. This means that you should vacuum your carpets more frequently.

Look for vacuum cleaners that have a special HEPA or High-Efficiency Particulate Air filter. This should keep the dust from circulating indoors.

Make sure also that the area rug remains dry so that mold and mildew are kept at bay. These are, of course, also dangerous to the human respiratory system which is why you should make sure that carpets are not just dust-free but also moisture-free.

Visit our area rug shop or take a Virtual Tour of our 60,000 sq.ft. showroom to choose from hundreds of materials, patterns, and styles. If you want more information about our traditional, contemporary, and transitional area rug options, then ask our expert designers through Designer on Demand


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