Rugs: the artwork of the floor. Rugs can offer so much to a room or space. We use them frequently to warm up cold floors and anchor the furniture in the space. With so many unique designs and colors, rugs add that decorative flare to any room! The biggest challenge is choosing a rug that meets your unique needs.
Rugs are great tools for dividing and defining spaces. In an open floor plan, a rug can be a great reminder of where the living room starts and the dining room begins. Building additional walls can be very pricey and can involve architecture, engineering, drawings, permitting and more. Many people either don’t want to go to that effort or don’t really need to move walls to enhance their space. That is where a fantastic rug can come into play and be used to create individual, dedicated areas.
Rugs typically come in standard sizes such as 4’x6’, 5’x8’, 8’x10’, 9’x12’ and 12’x15’ and are available in a wide range of prices. We can purchase nice rugs from $1,200 upward to $20,000. It depends on the clients’ budget and what they are comfortable with investing in the rug. There are other sizes that fall in between these standards but for the most part we work with the sizes above. Of course, oftentimes, the bigger the rug, the more expensive it is. When purchasing the perfect rug, we always make sure that we have the right size that is appropriate for the space. Too often we see a rug that was purchased too small and it looks like an afterthought in the room. That is the most common mistake we see in rugs. However, on the flipside, why would you spend the money on a rug that is too large?
A friendly and easy tip to remember when purchasing rugs is to make sure to always have at least the front legs of your sofas and your chairs placed on the rug. If your space allows and you have a rug that is large enough, you can also place all legs of the sofas and chairs completely on the rug. This placement is beautiful in a room. If your room is large and you are using a large rug that will take up most of the floor space, remember to leave approximately one foot of exposed floor between the rug and the walls. Here are a few examples.
I would personally recommend talking to a designer (like me for example, wink, wink) or at least a reputable rug supplier who can measure your room and guide you on the proper size rug for your space.
Choosing the Right Rug:
There are millions of rugs to choose from and it can be very easy to get overwhelmed when shopping for one. Here are some tips to keep in mind the next time you start searching for the perfect rug:
1). Rugs should be viewed as a foundation, rather than an accessory. Remember the color scheme of the room should be reflected in the rug. The main objective of the rug is to complete the room, rather than contrast in the space.
2). Think of the foot traffic in your space before you buy that expensive rug. If you are itching to buy a custom $50,000 Oriental rug, you probably don’t want to put it in your family room where your kids run with their muddy shoes and play with your dogs. Not to deter you, but the cost of maintenance may be slightly higher in this scenario. Instead, put your expensive rugs in an area where there will be low to moderate foot traffic. Instead of placing it in the busy family room, why not try the bedroom room? You can certainly put a rug in a major traffic area, just maybe not your most expensive, one-of-a-kind Oriental rug. Shop for a more durable, lower maintenance option, while keeping that stylish designer look.
In contrast, if worrying about kids or pets indoors is a non-issue for you, I would recommend placing the more luxurious and expensive rug in your living room. Each household will be different.
3). Make sure you can maintain your rug. High quality rugs should be professionally cleaned every three to five years. Cleaning should be adjusted to the amount of foot traffic and everyday use the rug experiences. Various materials and quality will also impact the levels of maintenance required. For instance, we have a vendor that has a line of washable rugs that are great for active families or households with a lot of in and out activity. You can throw the rugs from Ruggable into your home washer and they come out looking brand new! This is a great option for a play room, mudroom or even a door mat that gets a lot of traffic.
Rug Materials and Maintenance
According to Alexander Rug Care, quality rugs are typically made of wool, which is a very durable material. Since the fibers are coil-shaped, wool rugs tend to keep their shape even when exposed to heavy foot traffic. Wool naturally repels stains, so it produces a rug that’s easier to keep clean than many alternatives.
The main downside of wool rugs is that they may shed, especially when they’re brand new. It’s best to regularly vacuum your wool rug to get rid of loose fibers. However, avoid using a beater bar vacuum or vacuuming more than once a week, which can be too harsh and cause your rug to shed more. Always check the cleaning suggestions for your rug purchases. That will go a long way in protecting your investment. Of course, higher quality rugs shed much less. We avoid purchasing lower quality wool rugs for that very reason.
If food or drinks are spilled on your wool rug, the best rug cleaning method to use is simply water. Avoid scrubbing and rubbing the spill further into the rug. Rather, blot the soiled area repeatedly with a clean (preferably white) washcloth. For heavier or older stains, consider hiring a professional rug cleaner. If you’re interested in more rug maintenance tips, read our blog post on “How to Maintain Your Rug for a Lifetime.”
Many oriental rugs, vintage rugs and antique rugs that have lasted for decades are made from wool. The material is ideal for homeowners interested in making an investment that will last quite a long time, require little maintenance and feel luxurious throughout its lifetime.
Cleaning your high-quality Persian rug is a bit more expensive. We suggest a professional to come out to your home, pick up the rug, clean it and return it. There is also an inexpensive stain protection that can be sprayed onto the rug that will help protect the rug from the occasional wine or juice spill. Pamela Hope Designs has this protective solution applied to every rug we place in our clients’ homes.
From traditional to contemporary and every style in between, choosing a rug that will complement your living spaces is available in every price point. Just keep in mind the space you have, the budget and maintenance level you want and the style you want to convey.
Until next time, let your creative juices flow!
This is a great article with lots of great information. It is always important to look at your room layout to choose the best size that fits the area. Your point about making sure the more expensive rugs are placed in rooms that don’t see everyday traffic, pets, or kids that could spill on them is very important. Most of our clients in our area that own high end rugs such as Persian, antique, or wool often keep them in rooms that have been designed around the rugs. We ALWAYS recommend having professional oriental rug cleaners come to your home and pick up your rug for proper cleaning. The materials used in these rugs very often do not take well to household chemicals.