New flooring, whether you opt for a beautiful natural hardwood, a smooth tile, or durable laminate, needs the right rug for protection, warmth, and beauty. Before choosing a rug, read on to learn how to find the right size and material for your needs.
One of the biggest mistakes made by many rug shoppers is choosing the wrong size of rug. To avoid a rug that is too small to be useful or so large that it hides your beautiful new flooring, here are a few ground rules to follow:
Dining room: In the dining room, the rug should be large enough that the chairs around the table remain on the rug even when they are pulled out. A smaller rug doesn't just look awkward, it can pose a safety hazard since the chairs may not sit level if only a leg or two are on the rug.
Living room: You have more leeway in the living room. Generally, rugs are used here to tie together a zone or conversation area, so you may have more than one rug depending on the size and layout of your living room. Choose a rug that is wider than the longest piece of furniture that it will be lying near, usually the couch or a cluster of two chairs. If you choose to set the furniture on the rug, make sure it is large enough for all furniture in a conversation area to sit on the rug with a bit of room to spare.
Bedroom: These rugs often serve the specific purpose of keeping the floor warm. Choose a rug large enough to fit under the bed with 3 feet protruding beyond the bed on all sides. Alternatively, use a runner-style rug on each side of the bed.
Door rugs: Rugs in front of doors, sinks, or other specific small zones need to be a few inches wider than the door or zone they are providing floor protection and padding for.
The type of fibers used to make a rug are generally a point of personal preference. In general, you want something that you can vacuum and clean easily. Avoid rugs with a deep pile or shag styles in areas prone to dirt, such as under the dining room table or in the entryway. Busy patterns help hide minor soil, so these are often preferred in the dining room, or even the living room in high-traffic homes or those with small children.
The material on the underside of the rug is also important. Nonslip backings are a must, especially in moist areas like kitchens and entries. Yet some rubber and latex backings can leave behind discoloration on laminate or vinyl flooring. In some instances, wet rubber backing can even adhere to hard flooring, which is difficult to clean off. A simple rug pad will eradicate these concerns and make any rug nonslip.
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