How to choose the right rug size is something I talk to design clients and friends ALL the time. Knowing how to chose the right rug size will totally help you design a room like a pro. It is hands down one of the best tips that you can have up your arsenal, that will take any room from drab to fab. And trust me when I tell you, most people get this wrong, way wrong. So, what’s the right rug size? Simply said, when purchasing a rug, larger is better!
You see that!? That’s what you don’t want! Even Architectural Digest makes this mistake! What!???? It’s not uncommon. AD aside, for most people, it’s tempting to go for a smaller size rug because ultimately they are considerably cheaper. Once you look at 9 by 12 or 12 by 15 ft rugs, you’re talking a significant amount of your design budget. But, the result is well worth it.
And I hate pointing at this room, because Emily Henderson is a pro, but I think she admitted later that this room works so much better with the larger rug below. And thus, she re-did it! And voila!
Better save your pennies and splurge on the correct size rug, than visually shrink your room with a smaller rug. Unless you’re living in a small Manhattan apartment, most likely, even an 8 by 10 ft rug (which is the largest that most conventional retailers carry) might be too small for your room. So how do you decide what’s the right rug size for your room?
Start by measuring size of your seating area. Then you want to go a size up from there. An area rug is there to ground the space, not to chop it up. When your furniture is lying comfortably on the rug, then you’ve achieved that. A rug that is too small for the space shrinks your room. Make sure your rug is 6-10″ wider than your sofa! If your rug’s width is the width as your sofa, then the room will look too small. Aim for all the furniture to go on the rug, especially if your furniture is floating in a room. If your sofa is against the wall, you can get away with having just the front legs of the sofa on the rug, (ie. there is still some rug under the sofa), but be sure the rug is wide enough and you can have the rest of your furniture legs on the rug as well.
These below are images of my really good friend, Albertina’s old living room, featured in Little Green Notebook before she started blogging at Mimosa Lane. And yes, that is a rug size done right!
Hopefully, I’ve given you enough ideas of what I mean, and you can see that this applies no matter what style of design we’re talking about. As you can see in the pictures, all these rooms are very different in terms of style, but the rug size always worked.
Do you notice how the rug pulls together the entire space in each of these rooms? That’s what you accomplish with the right size rug.
Now, what if you have a smaller rug that you love, passed down by your grandmother or you found at an estate sale and the colors were just right? Stay tuned for next week’s post, where I’ll tell you how to best navigate that problem.
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