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How to Choose a Rug | Rug Types Explained

Your choice of rug should enhance or complement your interior space. Read on to discover the types of contemporary design rugs available and how to use them to create a comfortable, chic space.

How To Choose A Rug Size

Choosing the right size rug for your space is essential. Think about the space you are defining with the rug. Are you using a rug to fill a whole room, or are you using it to define a seating or dining area within a larger room? Measure up your space and select the optimal rug size before moving on to your rug’s material, colour and design.

To choose the right rug size for your space:

  1. Grab a measuring tape.
  2. Measure the length and width of your room or space.
  3. Measure a rectangle or square around the outside edge of your furniture.
  4. Note how the furniture is grouped together.

Your rug should be proportional to space and positioned to echo its dimensions. For best results, follow these general principles of good interior design:

  • Large rooms benefit visually from larger rugs.
  • A larger rug can make a room look more spacious if there is 45-60 centimetres or more bare floor exposed by the rug’s edges.
  • Small rooms need smaller rugs.
  • A rug should echo the room’s dimensions and orientation, for example, a rug in a long room should be positioned lengthwise.
  • Use scotch tape to visualise the final look of the rug placement before you purchase.
  • In an open-plan room, a rug can be used to define an area or divide the room up into multiple spaces.

Here are some general rug size recommendations:

  • For a room 13cm x 18cm – Choose a 8 cm x 13 cm rug
  • For a room 18cm x 25cm – Choose a 13 cm x 20 cm rug
  • For a room 25cm x 30cm – Choose a 20 cm x 25 cm rug
  • For a room 28cm x 36cm – Choose a 23 cm x 30 cm rug
  • For a room 35cm x 43cm – Choose a 30 cm x 38 cm rug

How To Choose A Rug Material

Each rug material type has a unique aesthetic. Here are the most popular types of rug materials in Australia and their characteristics:

Nylon Rugs

  • Provide a luxurious look and feel
  • Ideal for almost any part of the home, including high-traffic areas
  • Stain-resistant
  • Come in a huge variety of style, texture and pattern options

Acrylic Rugs

  • The look and feel of wool at a more affordable cost
  • Easy to clean
  • Not susceptible to moth damage
  • Weather resistant
  • Resists static and most stains
  • Ideal for low-traffic areas

Wool Rugs

  • A luxurious natural fibre
  • Comfortable on your feet
  • Holds colour incredibly well over time
  • Naturally flame retardant
  • Stain resistant
  • Odour resistant
  • Very durable

How To Choose A Rug For Different Rooms In Your House

Now that you have a good idea of your ideal rug size and material, it’s time to select the right rug to match your living room or bedroom.

How To Choose A Rug For The Living Room

Open Plan Living Room Rug

To enhance a living room within an open plan living space where the furniture ‘floats’ away from the wall, select a large rug that can spread underneath all of your living room furniture to create a defined seating area. If you choose this layout, make sure the rug extends at least 15 cm out from each side of your sofa legs to achieve a proper scale. This will help ensure your rug is in proportion with the surrounding space and furniture.

Classic Living Room Rug

For a classic living room layout where the furniture rests up against the wall, your rug should be large enough to fit under the front legs of all sofas and lounge chairs. For a more formal look, opt for the legs to be placed off the rug entirely.

Coffee Table Rug

An extension of the formal look described above, you can opt to place your rug neatly beneath your coffee table with 5 centimetres’ space. Round rugs are ideal for round coffee tables or for small corner sofas.

How To Choose A Rug For The Dining Room

To place a rug under a dining table, choose a rug that is wide enough that the chairs are completely on the rug, even when the chairs are pulled out and guests are sitting at the table. Typically, this means the rug should be approximately 120cm wider than your dining table to allow an extra 60cm width on each side.

How To Choose A Rug For The Bedroom

Horizontal Bedroom Rug

Place a rug horizontally under the bed with part of the rug exposed on each side. The rug should be large enough to sit underneath the bed and side tables, leaving around 45-60 centimetres of space without encroaching on a walkway. For a symmetrical look, a 20 x 25 cm rug is best for Queen beds, while a 23cm x 30cm rug is ideal for King beds.

Another option is for the rug to sit underneath the bed, stopping short of the side tables.

In general, a larger rug will make your bedroom appear larger.

Bedroom Runners

This is a great option if two sides of the bed against a wall. Place two long bedroom rugs (or runners) on each side of the bed to anchor each side. This runner should not extend beyond the length of the bed. If you want to create even more coziness, add a large rug at the foot of the bed.

Are you looking for a rug to enhance the look of your home? For all your rug and carpet needs, get in touch with the experts at Bennetts Carpets today on 1300 653 314.


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