How to Select the Perfect Rug

Choosing the right rug can feel a little overwhelming at first. Not only are there thousands of designs and colors to choose from, but selecting the perfect shape and size for your home can be a little daunting. Here is our handy guide to help you navigate your rug selections! You'll learn tips on how to select the ideal rug for you! We will also cover design, construction, and tips on how to care for your new rugs too! Keep reading!

Consider Traffic and Mood

As you are choosing your rugs, keep in mind how much traffic the rug will be experiencing. Rugs with condensed, or repeating patterns, with darker colors will show less dirt and wear over time. Rugs create the mood, or theme, for your rooms. For example, a lighter, softer shaded rug can make a room feel more open and brighten the area. Darker shades have the opposite effect and tend to create a more intimate, secluded feel to a room.

Choosing a Rug Size

It is important to think about the room your rug is going to be in. Your rug choice should compliment the size, furniture, and layout of the room as a whole. Whether you choose a rectangle, square, or round rug - the size and shape of the rug is just as important as the pattern or colors. The perfect rug can accent a particular group of furniture, define the area, and set the tone. Using multiple rugs can draw the eye from one room, or area of a room, to another.

Rug Size vs Room Size

Choosing the right size of area rug is just as important as selecting a pattern or color. Whether rectangle, square or round, the perfect size and shape of rug is critical to achieving the right look within the proportions and design of your room. See the image to the left as an example of our Floor & Rug plan.

Rugs often look bigger on the rack. It is a good idea to place a display rug on the floor to get a better idea of it's actual length. This may seem tedious but that is what we are here to help with! And it is always easier to take a little extra time in the store, than needing to exchange your purchase for a different size, later.

Choosing a Rug Color

When trying to match the colors of a room, we recommend using a secondary (or even third) color or design element to match the family of color. For example, it would be next to impossible to match the exact red found in a pillow - so instead, use a secondary color, a tan, or brown, and use that as the connecting color of the room. This can also be done with patterns. If you are using a striped design then use different sizes of stripes.


Traditional area rugs are typically modern-day representations of more formal, time-honoured European and Asian designs reminiscent of either Oriental or Persian motifs. Today's traditional designs typically incorporate current color pallets and sometimes an all-over geometric pattern with linear components for a more simplistic design as opposed to Oriental or Persian motifs. On the other hand, traditional designs can include pictorials illustrating elements from nature such as floral patterns.

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Contemporary designs are characterized by stark contrasts, bold use of color and sharp geometric design elements. "Modern" designs tend to be more architectural in feeling, such as art deco designs. They tend to be assertive and bold, offering a strong statement to a room's decor. On the other hand, "retro" designs hearken back to styles that were first popular in the 60's and early 70's. They take advantage of a free-form concept, rarely having any rhyme or reason to the flow of the design.

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Casual / Transitional

Transitional designs are a blend of contemporary and traditional. Sometimes referred to as "casual" they tend to be utilized to create the elegance of a traditional design without the formality they often project. Most transitional designs are characterized through the use of open spaces containing a sparse assortment of design components - sometimes traditional and sometimes contemporary.

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Southwestern / Tribal

This style is characterized by those design elements common to a specific culture or ethnic group. They typically combine earth tones such as yellow, gold, red and brown in very structured designs that offer their own interpretation. Southwest or Tribals lend themselves well to rooms that take on specific themes, offering a unique way to tie the common elements of a particular space together.

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Traditional vs Contemporary

As you shop for perfect rugs for your home, it is important to make selections that will compliment your current home design. What style does your home currently have? Is it elegant, contemporary, hip? How much lighting do you use? What colors do you use? Focus on the answers to these questions as you pick out your rugs. You want to ensure your rug selections will blend in with the decor, instead of distracting from it.

Pattern on Pattern

It is possible to combine several patterns within the same room, but it must be done correctly for positive results. Curtains, upholstery and pillows with small patterns can be best complemented with a rug featuring a large pattern, and vice versa. For example: A rug chosen with a large floral design would compliment a curtain with a small floral design. The same is true for plaids, stripes, and other patterns. As long as the patterns have coordinating colors, the distinctly different pattern size can match nicely.

Adding Depth with Texture

As you browse through rugs I'm sure you have noticed that some are flat and smooth, and others have looped piles of yarns. The different types of rug textures are yet another way to create interesting layers of design within your home. For example, a thick rug with loops of yarn looks stunning when placed on a hardwood floor. Despite their contrasting patterns the textures compliment each other very well. If you have a question about what kind of rug would look best on your flooring, feel free to give us a call or stop in!

Types of Rug Fibers

There are three basic types of rug fiber -Polypropylene, nylon and wool. All create beautifully colored, rich designs in a soft, thick, luxurious pile for unsurpassed style, quality and value.


Polypropylene is a petroleum-based fiber formed into yarns by a process of extrusion, whereby pre-dyed polypropylene pellets are melted down and extruded into a continuous fiber. Strong and colorfast with a soft wool-like feel,polypropylene resists wear and stains. It is value driven and the predominant machine-woven synthetic fiber with the power to compete with the best wool rugs.


Like Polypropylene, Nylon is extremely durable, stain resistant and low in moisture absorbency. Nylon fibers feature a soft luxurious texture and rich, lustrous appearance.


Wool is noted for luxury and softness, wool has a high build of all natural fiber. In fact, it’s natural ability to repel water and resistance to breaking and compressing makes it a very popular material for higher-end rugs.

A great advantage of polypropylene and nylon rugs is that these non-porous fibers are essentially stain-proof and resistant to soiling from almost any chemical. Also, both types produce little if any shedding and, being synthetic they are less likely to affect those who struggle with allergies.

Rug Terminology

Border The border of the rug is the design that forms the outside edge. It frames the rest of the rug and protects the weave.
Fringe Fringe is an extension of the warp threads on two opposite ends of the rug.
Hand The level of softness when you feel a rug, as well as the texture.
Hand-Knotted Tying or knotting pile yarns around woven backing fibers. The resulting face of the rugs is then sheared to a predetermined height to give the pile uniformity. The more knots per square foot the more valuable the rug.
Hand-Tufted Using a tufting gun, pile yarns are forced through a primary backing material known as a scrim. This process forms a looped pile, and if left uncut the rug is referred to as hand-hooked. If the loops are sheared off to create a cut-pile look, it is referred to as hand-tufted.
Hand-Carved The finishing touch for select rugs involves cutting or carving lines or design patterns into the surface of a rug. This process creates a rich texture and adds dimension, which also adds to the rug’s value.
Heat Set The ensure joining of many yarn fibers, they can be twisted together and then heated. This allows for greater design flexibility, and appearance retention.
Knots The knot refers to the portion of yarn that is attached, or knotted, to the backing of the rug. If the rug is a machine-made area rug, the knots are composed of two points, and one knot. To determine the number of knots in a rug, simply divide the number of points by two, and vice versa.
Pile The term pile refers to the nap, or amount of fiber that makes up the face of the rug.
Pile Height The pile height is the amount of yarn visible from the top of the rug to the back. Pile height is usually only measured on cut pile area rugs.
Points A point is the tip end of a pile yarn, and refers to the number of yarns that make up an area rug. The more points per square meter (or foot) the denser the construction and detailed the rug. An average area rug will have a minimum of 250,000 points per square meter.
Ply One or more yarns twisted together to form a larger piece of yarn. The Ply count indicates the number of single pieces that have been twisted together. For example: two-ply or three-ply.
Medallion The Medallion is the large, enclosed portion of your rug design. Usually in the center of the rug field and using a common shape such as an octagon, hexagon, and/or diamond.