Sizing Up Area Rugs.

23 Feb

I had the pleasure of working part-time for several years at a Carpet One location (this is not a plug I promise) while I was attending design school.  It was fabulous experience and had many informative conversations with the different sales reps from Armstrong, Mannington, Primco, Dal-tile, Schnier….to name a few, as well as put questions to the fellows who installed the carpet, tile, laminate, hardwood etc.   Each guy had his specialty, meaning that there were “carpet guys” and “tile guys” …. you see what I mean.

Fortunately for me (and my design education), the owner of this location did mostly high-end homes and show-homes.  He carried mostly the mid to high-end price point products so very rarely did we have someone coming in and looking for a 99 cent tile or a 1.99/sq.ft. carpet.

Almost immediately, I began to see some recurring customer behaviors.  One in particular had to do with area rugs.

In the early part of the last decade there was a huge swing away from carpet to hard-surface flooring.  In our store this generally meant solid or engineered hardwood.  The customer would spend time and money ripping out the living room, dining room and hallway carpet in order to put down hardwood.  Happy customer.

Several weeks later they’d be back to order an area rug.  Many people often scoff, “why spend all that money on wood floors if you’re just going to turn around and cover them up?”.

Actually the answer is so simple – it looks really good!  Well, okay there’s more to it than that but a room always looks finished when there is an area rug in the decór.  Other benefits include, noise reduction, warmth, added comfort underfoot and the most important, I believe, is a rug anchors all that furniture you’ve got floating around the room!

via House & Home

To determine the maximum-size rug that will fit in a room, subtract three feet from the room’s width and length, which will create a frame of flooring between the rug and the walls.  Remember that in order for the rug to make sense it can’t be left to simply float on the floor, “miles” away from the furniture it is supposed to be anchoring. Nothing pulls a conversation area together better than an area rug.

via Elle Decor

In a dining room, an area rug under the dining set can often add some needed color or texture to the decor.  For a dining room, choose an area rug that is wider and longer than your table so that the chairs will remain on the carpet even when pulled out.  At the very least, when a chair is pulled out to be sat on, the front legs and most of the seat should still be on the carpet.

via Lonny Magazine

In a bedroom, nothing compares to stepping out of bed onto the warmth of a rug.  Great example below of how an area rug provides the grounding that this big white bed needs while adding some much-needed color.

via Focal Point

Had to include this photo illustrating this rugs dual decorating function of adding some color and crib “support”.      So cozy – shhhhh!

via HGTV

An area rug can help define areas, introduce structure and direct traffic flow such as in a hallway.

via SoStinkin'Cute

(This hallway rug really pops doesn’t it – love it!)

Two examples of what not to do…..

It makes me crazy to see a little postage stamp rug laid out between pieces of furniture with a coffee table plopped on top.  If you are unable to, in the very least, put the front legs of the furniture on to your area rug……. then it is too small.

via Rue magazine

ugh! What were they thinking??

(Another example of the wrong size – see the gap?  Additionally, that 6 inches or so between  the rug and sofa is actually a tripping hazard.)

More rug inspirations….

via Rue magazine

via Rue

Same living room but this angle shows that the sofa is pulled right up to the edge of the rug.  While all this furniture tends to cover the busy pattern, it really pulls this cozy conversation grouping together.

source unknown

Loving this all-over patterned rug.

via HGTV

The perfect overhead shot – a picture really is worth a thousand words!

Simple Changes or Complete Transformations – design simply works.

(Are you lovin’  an area rug in your home?  Please share a pic!)

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One Response to “Sizing Up Area Rugs.”

  1. Scott June 30, 2012 at 7:48 am #

    You would want to consider the size of rug you want to purchase before purchasing it to make sure it is going to fit in the space you have allotted for. You don’t want to get your rug home and find out it is way too big for the space you want it for or way too small.

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