What to consider when choosing a Living Room Rug

Choosing a living room rug is no easy matter. Given the pride of place it will take in the living room, it needs to complement your existing décor, while making a statement of its own.

It needs to be tough and durable to withstand foot traffic, pets and the weight of furniture. But it also needs to be soft and comfortable on bare feet. And, if you’re living in Melbourne, you know it needs to be totally on-trend.

Given the huge range of styles (from modern rugs to designer rugs, Persian rugs to oriental rugs) and materials (wool, silk, sisal, jute etc.) and the endless closing down and discount sales, finding the perfect rug to tie your living room together can be a real challenge.

Fortunately, we have some tips to help you make that choice.

The size of the rug

When it comes to rug size, there’s much more to think about than whether it will fit in the room. Too often, people go for a rug that’s too small for the area. If it’s too small, it can get obscured by the furniture and won’t have the desired aesthetic impact. Smaller rugs may not serve the desired practical purposes either, like muffling noise or helping to warm the room.

Aim for larger rugs wherever possible, but make sure you leave 10-20cm of bare floor around all sides of the rug.

What style of rug do you want?

Before you consider the colour and pattern of the rug, you need to think about what rug style you’re looking for. Are you looking for modern rugs, designer rugs, oriental or Persian? Understanding the different styles will help you to eliminate what you don’t want while creating a shortlist that will help you narrow down your colour and pattern choices.

The colour and the pattern

Choosing the colour and pattern is perhaps the toughest choice you’ll have to make. What looks great online or in the showroom may not blend into your décor at home. Conversely, the designs you ignore may end up suiting your living room perfectly.

If you’ve settled on your rug style, chances are that will have already eliminated a large selection of colours and patterns. When making your final selection you should consider what will suit your existing furniture, colour scheme and floor style.

If you have a colourful room, then you may want to avoid multi-coloured or heavily pattern rugs as it can make things too busy. A solid, neutral coloured rug can be a great way to create space in an already eclectic or heavily furnished room.

Lighter coloured rugs can create a greater sense of light in a room, while darker colours will create a more sombre or cosy ambience.

You should also consider the practicality of the rug. Patterned and dark coloured rugs will hide stains, spills and wear better than plain, light coloured rugs.

Texture and material

This is an important choice for living room rugs, since you’ll likely spend a great deal of time walking and maybe even lying on it. Thick wool rugs will add softness and warmth to a space. Cheaper acrylic or wool blend rugs can still offer a soft texture, but may be scratchier than pure wool. Sisal or jute rugs are natural fibres that can be quite scratchy, but are super tough. Silk rugs are stunning, but they’re delicate and difficult to clean.

How durable is the rug?

Tied in with your material choice is the durability of the rug. Acrylic or wool-blend rugs are super easy to clean but won’t stand up to foot traffic too well and aren’t designed for longevity. Pure wool rugs are still fairly easy to clean and long lasting.

Sisal or rugs are ultra-heavy duty, stain resistant and great for high traffic areas.

Silk rugs, on the other hand, don’t stand up will to foot traffic and are very difficult to clean.

It’s important to consider how much the room will be used and what kind of activity and traffic your rug will be subjected to. If your living room will have heavy foot traffic, children and pets and potential spills from food and drink, you probably want to aim for a rug that’s easy to clean and ultra-durable.

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Sharokh Feghhi

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