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1. CONSIDER YOUR SPACE
Be sure the rug is large enough so that at least the two front legs of the couch and any armchairs can rest on top, but small enough so that all of the borders are at least 12 inches from the walls of the room.
An area rug helps define the space – not to mention the style – of the living room.
Choose a rug that is at least two feet longer and wider than the size of the dining room table to allow for a comfortable fit underneath the chairs. Avoid high-pile rugs, choosing instead a flatweave or a natural fiber sisal rug, so that it’s easy for chairs to slide in and out and simpler to spot clean.
An ideal dining room rug can pull together the room while being durable and easy to care for.
Bedroom rugs don’t tend to be in high traffic areas, so choose a soft and luxurious material to add a feeling of warmth and comfort to the entire room. You could also try two smaller area rugs or runners to get the same effect with a more contemporary feel.
The rug should extend at least 12 to 18 inches around the lower two thirds of the bed so that you can feel it underfoot when you step out of bed.
Interesting juxtapositions are often the foundation of good design, a principle that holds true for rugs as well. Choose a rug that offers a clear contrast with other furniture in the room. For example, a couch with solid upholstery could sit atop a vibrant ikat rug while a room filled with lighter colors should be grounded by rugs in darker hues.
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2. SELECT A DESIGN
Texture is also important to consider when selecting a rug. A low-traffic area, such as a bedroom, is the perfect opportunity for high-pile rugs with lush textures.
Higher traffic areas, like hallways, living rooms or dining rooms, call for low-pile silk or wool rugs, or rugs made with natural fibers such as jute. A rug with an overdyed or distressed design will age particularly well in a busy area and only pick up more character as time passes.
Before making a decision, order rug swatches to feel out both color and texture, and see how each one plays with other elements in the room.
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3. LAYER FOR STYLE
For a look that’s both stylish and versatile, layer two rugs on top of one another.
This works especially well in living rooms, where rugs can be used to define the space and add an important design element. To get the look, begin with a neutral base layer that’s large enough to anchor the space – a rug made with natural fibers such as sisal or abaca is often a top choice.
Then, add a smaller statement rug on top that’s low pile and provides a juxtaposition in either color or texture – a hide rug, with its natural shape and striking texture, works especially well.
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