Picking an area rug for your room can seem extremely daunting. There are so many options—which one is right? Luckily it’s pretty hard to go wrong with a rug’s design. Getting it to fit with your room is the hard part. But not anymore! With these four easy tips, picking a rug has never been easier.

1. Figure out Your Floor Plan

When you know how you would like your furniture arranged, measure the area you want your rug to fill. This is the best way to decide what size and shape of rug to get. Square and rectangular rugs anchor a large space while circular, oblong or freeform rugs are great pops of personality where space is limited.

For sitting areas, make sure that the rug will fit below the front legs of your furniture so you don’t end up with a floating rug. Another option is to buy a rug big enough to completely fit under all of your furniture. For dining areas, measure the size of your table and then choose a rug that is two feet longer in both dimensions. Lastly, when placing a rug in your bedroom, get one that sits under the lower two-thirds of your bed. You can also opt for runners instead.

 

Living Room Area Rug

 

2. Pick the Right Material

It’s important to keep in mind the kind of traffic and activity that will occur in your room. High traffic areas will need a durable rug, while rooms you spend a lot of time barefoot in will benefit from a softer rug. Wool rugs are timeless and durable, but they’re prone to staining and are not fit for a high traffic areas like a hallway. But, they can be intricately designed which makes them great for a living room or bedroom. Conversely, synthetic fabrics are extremely easy to clean and more affordable. This makes them great for that hallway.

 

Entryway Area Rug

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3. Match Your Furniture

When picking a pattern, be sure to keep your existing decor and furniture in mind (or your future look if you’re completely redoing a room). Make sure they balance each other instead of clash or compete for attention. Your rug should be a focal point and anchor for your room, not an afterthought, so sometimes it’s best to begin with it when designing a room.

 

Bedroom Area Rug

 

4. Add a Padded Layer

Many homeowners forget this step. If your rug is free standing (like in a hallway, remember, no floating rugs) or under a small piece of furniture, it’s in your best interest to place a rug pad below it to keep it in place. If you’ve placed your bed or other heavy furniture on top, you should be good. However, you’ll need a pad regardless if your rug is thin or thick because the back is rough and can damage your floors. The pad adds an extra layer of comfort to walk on while also protecting your flooring.

 

Dining Room Area Rug

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Extra Tips

Below are more tips to help you narrow your search down even further:

1. Large-scale area rugs should be a minimum of six inches and a maximum of two feet from the wall.

2. When using a round, free-standing area rug, anchor it by placing it under a light fixture.

3. For rugs in a home office, make sure it is large enough to fit under both the desk and chair to prevent tripping.

4. Round rugs work well in bathrooms to balance space and prevent tripping on corners.

5. Large patterns and bold designs on a small rug can make a room look larger.

6. If you plan on placing furniture on top of your rug, keep in mind that part of the design will be covered, so choose an all over pattern rather than one centered in the middle.

7. Placing rugs outdoors can make patio spaces homier, and it’s even more achievable today with durable outdoor rugs.

 

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