A rug can dramatically change the look and feel of a room, so read this guide before buying. One of the easiest and most effective ways to finish off the look of a room is to add a rug.
Yet it is an item that you should actually consider first. Flooring is often an afterthought, and even when it is added, many times it's done incorrectly. That's because a large part of decorating with rugs is based on the principles of proportion. Not to mention balance with colour and texture and the element of style, too.
So to ensure you get it right at your place, we consulted experts in the field to share their rules for decorating with rugs. A small rug in front of a large sofa will seem miserly. Therefore, in a large open-plan living space, you could use a rug to differentiate the living from dining areas. The furniture in each space could be placed on its own large rug. Do you want the rug to be a feature of the room, or simply add subtle texture and finish off a space?
More contemporary rugs can be made from plain, natural materials such as sisal, jute and hemp.
They can also add graphic elements to a room. In most cases this will guide you towards your complete desired interior. If you are selecting the rug after you have furnished the room, however, look for colours in a rug that complement a favourite piece of artwork or blend in with your soft furnishings," he adds. And, of course, rugs are a great way for renters to add colour or interest to a room when painting walls or hanging artwork is not an option. Likewise, bright colours work well in areas without much furniture, such as hallways entrances or stairs. Marmoleum is also a great eco option," she says.
You could even have a series of off-cuts of different colours and piles made into a patchwork rug, provided the backings can be bonded. They're practical, providing cushion, comfort and warmth over a concrete, tile or wood floor. Considered artwork for the floor, which acts as the frame, size does matter — and it's often a big concern for the homeowner unsure of how to create that well-balanced space. In a hallway, stretch the length to fill the space, leaving even space on both ends for balance. And if you plan to place any furniture in the hallway, keep it off the rug. Choose a rug that completely fits both the desk and chair to create a warm space where you'll feel comfortable at work. For practical purposes, this prevents tripping or chair dragging over the edges of the carpet, which are the weakest part of the accessory, he says. Depending on your preference, she suggests a rug that will provide space enough for the furniture to sit on top. In large living rooms, for example, you can use two rugs to create two separate living areas. For a more interesting look, she says, "try placing the rug at an angle. If you have a round table, place a round area rug underneath. The outdoor area, while often overlooked, can also be a great place for an area rug. Sigal says to experiment with shapes and textures that mimic the outdoor space and to purchase textiles that are made for outdoor use. Below is our huge photo gallery featuring living rooms with area rugs. Bringing in accent pillows to pick up colors from the rug is an easy way to tie in a rug that may or may not match the colors of your walls. There is a variety of ideas on how large your area rug should be: some rooms have all furniture legs on the rug, some have only the front legs on the rug. Some have no legs on the rug or maybe one leg from the chairs and two from the couches. There must be at least 18 inches of bare floor around the perimeter of the rug.
The Right Rug The Right Size
We hope you’ll enjoy this gallery and come away with inspiration for your own living room. Are large area rugs best for a living room?
Generally, you’ll get a large area rug for your living room because it will fill out a good portion of the space. However, sometimes and depending on your living room layout, you may opt for a smaller rug off to the side demarcating a section of the space such as a small reading nook. Even tougher decision: figuring out the size of the rug you’ll need. Always place your furniture first before measuring for a rug. This can save you from ordering a size that might be too big, or small. In a dining room, you might want to measure inward from pieces lining the room like china cabinets, drinks carts, or consoles. Kraft paper cut to the size of furniture and placed mat-style on the floor can also help you see how much rug you’ll need. In a room of average to ample dimensions, when the goal is to create a single seating space together in a clean, unified way, use a rug that’s a little larger than the furniture footprint area. Measure the “furniture footprint” of your room (the space occupied by seating, ottomans, and tables). This creates a pulled-together cozy conversation area. If you do place furniture a bit off the rug, be consistent: two legs off the rug per key piece, evenly placed. If you have a sofa whose back is against a wall, gain some extra rug up front if needed by pulling more rug forward to create the defined area, keeping just the front legs of the sofa on the rug. Or place the rug in front of the sofa, with chairs or tables positioned on it, facing the sofa. This simple trick can extend your coverage, and color, for a better visual in any room. One caveat: in a dining room, using a rug that’s a little too small can be more than a visual issue. It can be problematic for your guests, especially if the chairs are left hanging partly off onto a hard surface floor, causing the chairs to feel wobbly or even like they might tip backwards. You’ll want some inches to spare for your guests’ comfort, so keep that in mind when measuring.
Tips to Choosing the Right Rug Size
You want a rug with enough length to mirror or fill the rectangular space, ideally while keeping a consistent distance from the walls on all sides. A long room with a skimpy rug or too much bare floor at one end simply doesn’t look complete or inviting. In a bedroom, when using an area rug, lay your rug so that the long side runs from one side of the bed to the other. This allows for enough footage on either side to equal the furniture footprint including the bedside tables, and to ensure that your feet can step comfortably onto a soft rug when you get out of bed. Starting the rug about halfway under the bed can give yourself more rug to enjoy in the room space at the foot. In a modern space, a fluffy faux fur rug or a burst of color can be fun, especially on a beautiful floor of wood or natural stone.
I do think you should warn people about smaller area rugs that are not secured down by furniture and a rubber pad underneath. Once, when my mom was in the emergency room, a women came in with a broken hip from falling on a rug. The doctor said that 75% of people breaking their hips are from falling on smaller rugs.
I would also like to know the general amount of space needed around dining room chairs.
I know you said 6 to 12 inches, but is it uncomfortable or difficult for people to pull their chairs out from the dining table after eating when their chair is on an area rug?
Hope next year you come out with maybe life size rubber bloodshot eyeballs that float, wouldn’t that be frightening. Might we inquire if there is there more furniture sitting on-top of this rug, a la a couch or armchairs?
We ask, because there are a number of ways to utilize a round rug. For instance, you’ll want to make the rug large enough for all of a room’s major furniture pieces to touch. When measuring, remember that the rug’s curved edges could look odd if they don’t allow enough of the furniture pieces to rest on top.
I am having a difficult time deciding what size rug for either size of a king size bed.
I am trying to figure out what size we need for that.
I have a red striped rug but have some blue in it.
I want to get a blue rug or shades of blue or turquoise. While it only has hints of blue in it, we think the statement it will make against brown furniture will be well worth the compromise. A traditional rug of cream background-brown and light blue flowers.
I have several nice pices of blue and white in the room. Sadly my room looked pretty before the new chairs. Can you help with either a new couch or rug idea. It is nice to decor the living area with hand knotted rugs. A traditional hand knotted rugs can make your house perfect and. There are so many things to consider—personal aesthetic, lifestyle, budget and more—but the best way to begin is with the furniture layout. These living room layout ideas will make the job of arranging furniture and decorating your home easy and enjoyable. Measure the living room from wall to wall, making note of the length and width of the room.
First, draw a box, noting the measurements on all sides. Whether you create it on a computer program or hand draw it on graph paper, having a scale floor plan is helpful for space planning. Most of the time, converting feet to inches at a 1:1 scale is easiest. Then measure any furnishings that you’ve decided to include and create a separate uniquely-sized box for each piece. If drawing by hand, one idea is to create paper furniture cutouts (to scale) so you can play with different furniture arrangements. Once that is determined, the furniture arrangements can fall into place around it. So the main sofa, couch or sectional should be placed facing that wall. Additional armchairs and chaises can flank either side of the television wall as well, rounding out the seating area while adding visual balance. To perfect this arrangement, consider incorporating custom furniture —a pair of unique upholstered armchairs makes a bold statement. For living rooms with a fireplace, most people consider conversation the most important goal. So a semi-circular furniture configuration around the hearth, with no more than 8 feet in between seats, promotes easy interaction with family and friends. For living rooms with neither a hearth or a television, a central focal point makes the most sense. Float a sofa (or two, facing each other) around a coffee table, with chairs placed around the circle to close any gaps. Arrange tables, storage cabinets and ottomans. Once the seating area has been set (around the focal point), placing tables and storage cabinets is next. In a living room, the main coffee table or ottoman can be placed in the middle of the sofas and chairs. Sofa tables are long, narrow tables that go behind a sofa, against its back. Side tables go next to the armchairs and on either side of the sofa. Be sure to allow at least 30 inches between furniture pieces in places where people need to pass through.
Choosing the Best Area Rug for Space
For small spaces, consider nesting tables that can expand when in use and fold up when they are not needed. Storage cabinets and case goods are placed against the wall, wherever the space allows. Bar cabinets and bar carts are pieces that add an aura of glamour to the living room. Floor lamps take the place of side tables, so the coffee table should come within arm’s reach so guests can set drinks down. Table lamps are self-explanatory—just make sure they don’t take up the entire table top. Chandeliers should be centered above the main seating area, or flush-mount fixtures make sense anywhere on the ceiling since they don’t hang down. Spot lighting can call attention to art works, sculptures or library built-ins as well. The last element of a living room furniture layout is also the easiest: the rug. This should be centered in the middle of the main seating arrangement and extend a few inches beyond the sofa and chairs (or even further) to anchor the entire room. If the room is already carpeted, adding a thicker accent rug on top is a nice way to add warmth and encourage guests to relax and stay awhile. Is furniture blocking air supply or radiators?
Basically, figure out what is most important to you before you begin your furniture arrangement or buy furniture, and you’ll succeed in creating a special space that reflects your personal taste. The furniture is either arranged on top of it or around it, and it forms the base of a room. The right furniture arrangement can make all the difference!
It is typically advised to leave 12 to 18 inches of exposed flooring around the rug. In small spaces, anchor your furniture using a 4 x 6 or 5 x 8 rug in the center of the area. Your furniture should be arranged around the rug, not placed on top of it to create a feeling of openness. In slightly larger spaces, place the front legs of your furniture on top of the area rug. This is most common in rooms that utilize an 8 x 10 size area rug. If you have an open floor plan, use a rug to define the space. Choose a large rug, like a 9’x 12’ or bigger, that most of your furniture can fit on comfortably. All the legs of your furniture should be on top of the rug. If you have more than one sofa, center your area rug at an equal distance between the two. For full-sized beds and larger, be sure to use a rug that fits easily underneath the bottom two-thirds of the bed. This placement allows adequate space for your nightstands. Your rug should extend from the table approximately 18-24 inches.
Other than the size of the room and furniture, consider the pattern of the rug. If the rug is going to be under a bed or large furniture, make sure enough of the pattern shows. The key to properly arranging furniture around an area rug is to consider the rug the anchor of the room. Make that the base, and you can’t go wrong. Tell us your stories about arranging furniture around an area rug. When the rug is the right size it creates a properly balanced room. Exactly how much flooring should show around your rug is up for debate and is really your preference. In most situations, we do not want to carpet the room, nor do we want our rug to look like a deserted island floating in the middle of a grand sea of wood!
Take what you consider the center of your room and visualize framing that space. In smaller spaces, you can get away with having the rug just in front of the sofa – 6” to 18” in front of the sofa is a typical distance that shows a nice border of wood, but again, it is your preference. Remember we are accenting your floors – so we want them to shine at their maximum potential as well!
I find that in larger rooms - the space is anchored better when the rug goes under the sofa and comes out on the sides.
601 Examples of Living Rooms Area Rugs Photos
In larger sized living rooms – it’s best to go with a larger rug and have all your furniture sit on the rug. Make sure that there is enough rug extending out behind the furniture pieces so you can comfortably walk behind them (and you’re not walking one foot on the rug and one foot off!).
You would need a 10x14 rug up to 12x18 rug to allow this. Of course, if your space allows it, you can always have multiple rugs in the living room – say a runner is running behind the sofa, or an additional rug is in front of the fireplace. This can help balance out the room if the current rug feels too small. It all depends on the layout of the room, the amount, the size of the furniture, and how much flooring you want to show.
You don’t want your chairs half on half off the rug when pulled out. Take a tape measure and measure just beyond where your chairs are.
I recommend buying a rug that fits the size the table is kept at normally – if you only use the leaves (extensions) twice a year, try to take that into consideration.
We have a variety for every recommended size!
This maximizes the amount of useable rug – giving you a soft, plush goodness to stand on when getting out of bed. Giving you a nice anchoring frame to your bed while still accenting your floors. Of course, the amount of rug at the end of the bed depends on how close you bring the rug up to the side tables. Ideally, you just want to make sure that your feet land on it when you get out of bed.
You could even use a nice round accent rug to soften the room. The possibilities are endless with our wide variety of area rug sizes!
Make sure the rug is in balance with the room. If your foyer lends itself to the use of a round or octagon rug – they can add interest and a dramatic effect – especially when mirroring a chandelier or a fabulous fixture. Consider rugs with pattern and personality – often foyers can benefit from the anchoring effect of a rug that is both strong in presence and aesthetically pleasing. Like foyers, hallways can be very simply decorated spaces, which allows the rug to be a focal point.
Runners come in many lengths and sizes – from 6 feet all the way to 12 feet. The average hallway uses a runner of 2x8. Your office cannot be complete without a rug that makes it your own. Whether it shows your traditional nature or your creative side – be sure you are setting the right tone for the room where big decisions are made. As much time as we spend cooking and washing dishes, we deserve a rug that provides us with comfort and makes us happy. Please remember, just because a rug is not “a kitchen rug” does not mean it wouldn’t be perfect in a kitchen. A rug can be both stylish and durable, and can be a great addition to an outdoor kitchen or patio area!
Smaller rugs seem to find their homes in the kitchen. An aesthetically pleasing and fun alternative can be having a round rug in the center of a large kitchen. Remember, the larger the space, the more you should cover to make sure the room feels balanced. No matter what room you would like to accent, there is a rug that will complement it beautifully. If you need help deciding what will work best in your home?
Reds, strong blues and vibrant greens in particular.
Home Accents Rugs Decorative Area Rugs
The walls are decorated with a pop of bright colors and the white colored couch is placed at the one corner of my room. Please suggest me the area rug which can go best with my living room. The colors and pattern really brightened up our family room and are a nice match for our new sofa and love seat. We've had it in our living room, a high traffic area, for a few weeks now and it's holding up great, no shedding!
I saw this displayed in the store and loved it but was a little worried that it would be too "busy" for my living room. But it looks lovely and we receive many compliments. This rug has a very modern/contemporary feel. It goes beautifully with gray tones and some of the red tones in our great room.
I had been looking for some time and this one was the one. It is a heavy weight, so it does not slip around when we walk on it. The edges are well woven too - they lay flat and are not curling up.
We are not getting a thread litter now that it has been in place for a few weeks-to me this means it is a well constructed piece.
We debated about this piece due to the price on our "sort of a budget" room update, however now. The piece was well wrapped (shipping/handling).
Living Room Layouts
There are so many different shades of grey and blue it goes with everything. This particular rug is beautiful, well made and has a variety of colors to anchor the room. Would definitely recommend the rug and store to family and friends!
It’s a bit darker than the picture, but still nice. The quality is very soft when you step on it and the shag does not shed. This black she carpet is my favorite piece of my living room!!
Another disadvantage would probably be cleaning this rug (the threads are very long, so it's easy for crumbs and such to be stuck deep within the rug. Colors are great and has its own individual charm. It's great, the shag is so thick and nice that you don't even see the seam or space where the two meet!
It is handmade and the construction of it gives it a unique dimension that most rugs don't. It's more expensive, but worth the price. It is quite dark which is a beautiful contrast to my travertine floors.