Design Dilemma: Choosing the Right Size Area Rug | Home Design Find
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Design Dilemma: Choosing the Right Size Area Rug

2papiani 218x300 how to tips adviceHave you ever visited a home and noticed that something looked not-quite-right? Perhaps you couldn’t put your finger on what was wrong. Well, here’s a guess:  an area rug may have been either too small or too large. Rugs that are the wrong size can look awkward and throw off the proportions of a room. So what size area rug is the “right” size?

1) Aim to accomodate all your furniture on a rug, or none of it on a rug. In other words, opt for a size that will accomodate all feet of your couch, coffee table and side chairs. Or, opt for a rug a bit smaller and arrange furniture along the periphery of an area rug. If you go for the second look, make sure the rug extends the length and width of your furniture. Generally, 8 x 5 foot rugs or 6 x 9 foot rugs work well for this effect.

2) Don’t go wall to wall. If you’re choosing an area rug, it should have some breathing space around the perimeter of the room to show off the floors. Otherwise, why not get wall-to-wall carpet? The basic rule of thumb is to leave 18 inches of space around a rug. In a small foyer or entry way, 8 to 12 inches of floor space can be acceptable.

3) In a dining room, both the table and chairs should sit on the rug. If a rug is so small that only a table can sit on it, and not chairs, the room will look awkward and it will be a serious pain to move the chairs around. Note that when chairs are pulled away from the table, they should still be able to stay within the boundaries of the rug.

4) In a bedroom, area rugs that extend beyond the bed about 18 inches look the most balanced. For smaller beds — twins and doubles, the area rug should extend beyond the bed about 12 inches.

5) Cover a high-traffic area completely, or leave it bare. It’s clumsy-looking and even dangerous to put a too-small rug in a high traffic area where someone may easily trip.

6) In irregularly-shaped rooms, consider a circular rug. In a room that is long and narrow or otherwise awkwardly shaped, a round rug can be a graceful way of defining a conversation area while still allowing high-traffic parts of the room to remain rug-free.

7) When unsure, map it out. If you just can’t decide what size rug will look good in your room use painter’s tape to map out the approximate size you like on the floor. Measure the dimensions and shop for a rug of that size.

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6 Comments so far to “Design Dilemma: Choosing the Right Size Area Rug”
  1. Design Roundup: Inclined House Inspired By The Mountains Says:

    [...] Dilemma: Choosing the Right Size Area Rug [...]

  2. MLuxe - Distinctive Home Style » Blog Archive » Link Love: Reclaimed Bowling Lane Furniture, Backyard Entertaining Tips annd More Says:

    [...] Design Dilemma: Choosing the Right Size Area Rug Home Design Find Choosing the right area rug might not strike you as a big design dilemma, but doing it right does require more thought than many folks might give. A couple of the tips: Aim to accomodate all your furniture on a rug or none of it on a rug, and in a bedroom, area rugs that extend beyond the bed about 18 inches look the most balanced. Read the post for more things to consider. [...]

  3. MLuxe - Distinctive Home Style » Blog Archive » Link Love: Reclaimed Bowling Lane Furniture, Backyard Entertaining Tips and More Says:

    [...] Design Dilemma: Choosing the Right Size Area Rug Home Design Find Choosing the right area rug might not strike you as a big design dilemma, but doing it right does require more thought than many folks might give. A couple of the tips: Aim to accomodate all your furniture on a rug or none of it on a rug, and in a bedroom, area rugs that extend beyond the bed about 18 inches look the most balanced. Read the post for more things to consider. [...]

  4. Which Carpet Will Meet My Needs? Says:

    [...] Choosing the Right Size Area Rug [...]

  5. Kerri Ginardi Says:

    How can I get an area rug to stay still on top of my carpet. It seems to crawl. Thanx

  6. Ruglover Says:

    While it's a year old, this is a great article that for sure will help a lot of people deciding on what rug size to get.
    For those interested, here is a link that has some illustrations that would give you also a good idea about what size rug to choose: http://www.worldofrugs.com/shop/pc/Idea.asp

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