How To Choose the Right Sized Area Rug

by Rachel Laurendeau on September 15, 2012

With many people moving away from wall to wall carpeting towards wood, cork, bamboo and tile, there is an ever-growing need for area rugs to add warmth, texture, color and style to our homes. Whether choosing an antique rug, oriental rug, reproduction or modern manufactured rug, the biggest question is, how do you choose the right sized area rug for your space? The most common mistake that people make is choosing a rug that is too small for the area so it seems dwarfed or out of proportion. Follow our room by room tips to find out the best ways to measure for your home.

General Rule of Thumb
Generally, I think the most fun is to be had at the end of a home remodeling, when all of the finishing touches are being added. If you are trying to figure out the maximum-size rug that will fit in a room, subtract three feet from the room’s width and length, which will create a frame of flooring between the rug and the walls. (Source: Style At Home)

Dining Room
I am personally not a big fan of rugs in the dining room, probably because I am messy and accident-prone and know that any rug in my eating area will be stained within a few days. If you are more daring and tidier than I am and want to include an area rug in your dining room, I strongly recommend a dark or patterned rug.

When sizing an area rug for your dining area, you will want to measure the dining room table and then add 48” to 54” to the length and width so that the chairs stay on the rug when moved in and out.

I love stepping out of bed onto a warm plush surface rather than onto chilly hardwood, so I do like the use of carpet or area rugs in the bedroom. Measure the bed and add 24” to each side that is not against the wall.

Living Room and Family Room
Typically, area rugs are used to ground a grouping of furniture such as chairs, sofa and tables. Measure the outside edges or your entire furniture grouping and deduct 24” from the length and width. The front legs of the sofa and chairs will be placed on the rug so they all feel anchored together. If your grouping faces the TV or fireplace, then measure from the perimeter to the end of the coffee table. There is no need to subtract anything. (Source: My Design Secrets)

If you choose to place a runner in your hallway or to direct traffic flow in a large open-concept room, you would measure the hallway or pathway and deduct 12” from the length and width, which will give you a 6” border of flooring all around.

Whether you have just completed a large-scale home remodeling or are simply redecorating as a fun home improvement project, choosing the right style, color and size for your area rug will give you the crowning glory that your beautiful floors deserve.

Resource: Style At Home and My Design Secrets

Related post: Versatility of Carpet Tile

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