Ideas + Advice

Baby + Kids

How to Choose the Right Rug

From the moment you step into your home, rugs impact how it looks + feels. Here’s what to consider to choose the best material, construction and style for each room.

    1.   LOCATION

Where will you use the rug and how much traffic does the room get? This should guide your decisions about what materials, construction and pile height or thickness will work best. In a dining room, for example, a flatweave or low tufted rug generally works well, so you can pull chairs in and out easily. A thick shag rug will be a messy crumb-catcher in a dining room, but will feel great underfoot in a bedroom. Sisal and jute are hard-wearing, but aren’t a good choice for crawling children or cleaning up after pets + spills.

    2.   MATERIAL

Wool

WOOL

Soft, long-lasting and resilient, wool is a premium choice that naturally repels stains and can be cleaned easily. Wool’s a great choice in almost any room. It will tend to shed the first 3-6 months, especially if it’s a thick shag, but with regular vacuuming, shedding will diminish.

VISCOSE

This rayon-like fiber made from wood pulp mimics silk and is often blended with wool to add luster and shine.

Viscose
Nylon

NYLON

Durable, affordable and shed-resistant, nylon is great for hard-wearing areas like entrance halls and playrooms.

JUTE + SISAL

These natural plant fibers are sturdy and great for high-traffic areas, but it can be harder to remove stains. With their neutral palette and rugged texture, they make a sophisticated backdrop for a living or family room. Some of our rugs blend jute with wool or cotton to make it softer underfoot.

Jute + Sisal
Indoor/Outdoor

INDOOR/OUTDOOR

Ours are made from recycled polyester that’s durable yet surprisingly soft; they’re water- and shed-resistant and reversible. Don’t just use them outdoors: They’re great for kitchens, playrooms, halls and other high-traffic areas. When you do use them outdoors, it’s best to roll them up and keep under cover during heavy rain to make drying easier.

3.   CONSTRUCTION

The way a rug is woven or tufted, and how deep the pile is also influences its best use.

SHAG

Shag rugs have a deep, thick pile that feels great under bare feet in a bedroom or living room, but can be tough to keep clean in a dining room. With wool shags, expect some shedding the first few months.

Shag
Tufted

TUFTED

Tufted rugs can be looped, or the loops can be cut to create a plush, thick pile. They’re a good, durable choice for almost anywhere. Our rugs are often tufted by hand using a tufting gun to punch the yarn through a canvas grid, and then a coating is added to the back for stability.

HAND-KNOTTED

Hand-knotted rugs are intricately crafted by an artisan who hand-knots each piece of yarn on a loom. This is how traditional Persian or Oriental rugs are made and is more labor-intensive and durable.

Hand-Knotted
Flatweave

FLATWEAVE

Flatweave rugs such as dhurries + kilims are very durable and often reversible. They’re a good choice for dining rooms, hallways and high-traffic areas. A rug pad is especially useful with a flatweave rug, to help it stay in place and add a little more cushioning.

4.   SIZE + PLACEMENT

Rules of thumb to find the best size rug for your rooms:

Dining Room

DINING ROOM

  • Choose a size that allows 2-3’ on each side of your table to pull out chairs. Most tables need a rug that’s at least 8’ wide.

LIVING ROOM

  • Leave at least a 1’ border between rug and walls.
  • For a seating group, have at least the front feet of the main pieces of furniture on the rug.
Living Room
Bedroom

BEDROOM

  • Depending on your rug and room size, place the rug under at least the front 2/3 of the bed, and allow at least 3’ on each side of the bed to have a soft, warm place for your feet to land when you get out of bed.
  • Alternatively, you could place a runner on each side of the bed, or a single runner at the foot of your bed.

5.   DON’T FORGET A RUG PAD!

It might seem like an unnecessary expense, but a rug pad pays for itself by extending the wear and life of your rug, adding a layer of cushioning, and keeping your rug in place so it doesn’t curl, move or create a tripping hazard.

Our environmentally-friendly Eco-Stay Pad is made from 100% plant-based oils.

Our Premium Pad is made from recycled post-industrial fibers. This thick, plush pad is suitable for all surfaces, including carpeting and radiant heat flooring.

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Need more help? Our free Design Crew stylists are happy to help you find just the right rug for your space and coordinate it with your furnishings. Ask in store or learn more here.

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