Enhancing Space with Rugs

You may have noticed that rug styles have drastically changed since Oriental rugs had their heyday. (Of course some traditional homes use Oriental rugs perfectly!) Today’s rug styles feature large prints, multi-colored patterns and shag. Some modern rugs also mix texture, using both cut pile and loop construction.

Four examples of popular styles: shag, cut pile & loop construction, and large prints.

There are some basic rules when choosing a rug size that help ground the space. Typically, leave a border of flooring showing beyond the rug, making the room appear larger. The rug should define an area. The front legs of your main furniture should be on the rug. Your rug should be approximately three-quarters of the room size. For instance, a 12’ x 16’ room should have a 9’x12’ rug. These rules help ground the space. In a dining area add 18″ from the back of the chair when it is in the sitting position so the chair’s back legs stay on the rug at all times.

A rug pad prevents shifting and bunching as well as provides protection for the floor and rug. Pads extend the life of your rug, help with sound proofing, thermal insulation and cushioning.  Extra thick pads provide ultimate cushioning and insulation, help with uneven surfaces like tile, make vacuuming easier and prevent scratching of hardwood floors. They can be cut to size – we recommend that your pad is a half inch smaller on all sides than the rug. Use the rubber side down on hard surfaces and over carpet, rubber side up.

Like any investment, it is important to take proper care of your rug so it will last for many years. To maintain quality, it is important to follow these guidelines:

  1. Vacuum large rugs regularly. Use canister vacuums over beater bar vacuums and if using a bar vacuum use the attachment or highest setting. Wool rugs shed in the beginning so they may take 20-25 vacuums to curtail shedding.
  2. Brush out pet hair. Sometimes vacuums leave pet hair behind.
  3. Turn rugs every 6 months as foot traffic and sun put stress on rugs.
  4. Shake out small rugs.
  5. Clean spills immediately. Once a stain sets it is difficult to remove. Each fiber type has different recommendations. Know the fiber content and follow instructions.

A new rug can be a great way to enhance a space. Hopefully these guidelines will help you select and care for beautiful rugs for many years of enjoyment.