Everything you need to know when selecting area rugs

August 25, 2020


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When you’re picking out area rugs for your home, it can be hard to know where to start with size, color, material and design. We’re here to help with a complete guide to area rugs that will fit perfectly into your home design!


Arguably the most challenging aspect of choosing a rug is knowing the correct size for your space. In fact, one of our biggest design pet peeves is incorrectly sized rugs. It can be really easy, especially in big rooms, to choose area rugs that are too small. In a living room, a good rule of thumb is to make sure your rug is big enough to fit the front legs of your furniture, and not big enough to fit all of the furniture in its entirety. Aim to leave at least a foot of exposed floor around the border of the rug.

In bedrooms, the rug should fit under the bed with enough rub on each side to comfortably put your feet on. For smaller spaces, like entryways, shoot for a rug that leaves about 18-24″ inches between the rug and the wall.

If you’re picking a rug for a dining room, keep in mind that the rug should be big enough for the full table and chairs, including when the chairs are pulled out – you don’t want chairs snagging on the rug every time they’re moved back and forth!


Just like choosing the right building materials matters to set the style of your home, and the correct textiles, selecting a rug in an appropriate fabric for your space and specific needs is essential. For example, a jute rug would look great in a coastal home, and not so much in an ultra-modern house. If you have kids and pets, choosing a rug that’s durable (and cleanable!) is important, such as wool or synthetics. In an area of the home with less traffic, you can get away with a more decorative, and less durable, rug. It’s always important to keep in mind that, like most things, you get what you pay for. A more high-quality rug will be more expensive, but will likely last longer before needing to be replaced.

Photo: Spacecrafting Photography

Color & Design

Choosing the correct style of rug falls into a similar category as many of our other design tips. The goal is always to make your home look cohesive and coordinated, not matchy-matchy. A rug is also a great opportunity to add some pattern and color to an otherwise neutral home. Try a geometric or fringed rug in a modern space for a modern bohemian vibe, or go bold with a shag or faux fur rug in a bedroom for some added glam. Woven rugs are the natural choice for a beachy coastal home, and more rustic, neutral fabrics fit well with a farmhouse style. Faux sheepskin or cowhide is a bold choice that can add some flair to your space, too. The design is where you get to play around and reflect your style!

Photo: Spacecrafting Photography

What are your favorite styles of rugs to incorporate in your home? Do you have a lot of area rugs? We want to know all about your design preferences! Make sure to comment here and follow along over on Instagram too @AlmaHomes for more design tips and tricks!

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