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What Size Area Rug Do I Need

January 2, 2014

Determining the proper size for a room’s area rug can become a bit daunting and takes many factors into consideration. Room and furniture size, style, and personal preference all need to be taken into consideration. Before going out to look for a new area rug, start by taking a few measurements in your space. You will first need the over all dimension of the room you are shopping for. There is no sense in purchasing a rug that will have to curl up at the ends of the wall.

The second group of measurements you will need is the furniture that you intend to place on, around or near your area rug. A key component of good design is proportion. If you have a gargantuan sofa, you do not want to purchase a small rug that will just get lost lying next to the furniture.



You will also need these measurements to decide on your overall furniture or seating arrangement. How will the rug compliment the way you have your sofa facing the two slipper chairs with the Neoclassical glass coffee table in-between? Do you want the rug to have a floating appearance or tie the seating arrangement in close for good conversation? Do you want the first thing your feet touch when climbing out of bed to be the plush wool rug?

It is best to draw all of this out before you leave the house. Used graph paper to draw your room to scale with all of the furniture in it. This does not need to be exact or beautiful; just a rough sketch, one block equal one square foot. After you sketch in your furniture, go ahead and draw in the ideal size area rug you would like. Figure out the size of the rug you just sketched in using the lines on the graph paper.

Another way is to use newspaper. Lay sheets of newspaper on the floor where you want to put the rug. Play around with the size until you have it just right.

Area rugs are sold in what is considered “typical sizes.” These are the standard sizes used to mass-produce rugs to the masses. If your ideal rug does not fit into these standard sizes, a custom rug can be made. Just keep in mind that custom area rugs can become very expensive, and probably will not make that big of a difference. It is often the best choice to stick with the typicals.

Living in an apartment or small home, most rooms and eating arrangements will benefit most with an 8’ x 10’ area rug or smaller. Grandeur formal living rooms and dens will benefit from the larger sizes.

Do you already have wall-to-wall carpeting in your home? Don’t discount the use of area rugs. They work very well to visually divide large spaces, provide distinction and color to any room and can be much more plush to walk on.

From one mom to another, an area rug underneath the dining room table is splendid for catching food and stains. When it is dirty, you can either have it professionally cleaned or just take it outside and scrub it down with detergent as opposed to having to replace your entire carpet throughout because of one grape juice stain.

These tips are just the basics to buying your next area rug. In the end, keep in mind your own personal style and taste. Just because the interior design professionals say that these rules are the way you should do it, doesn’t mean that their way is the only way to liven up your personal space with area rugs.

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