Skinny on Rugs

“Details are not the details. They make the design.”   – Charles Eames -

The Skinny on Rugs! The rules, the facts and the options…..

Where to begin?  The first step is to assess what fiber best suits your needs.  If the rug is meant for a high traffic area that is at risk for spills and stains, then you will require a low maintenance, easy clean option.  Once this is determined, the world is your oyster. See below for the skinny on all things rugs…..

The rules:

Rule #1 Buy what you love; let the rug inspire the space!  Choose a pattern or a colour scheme that can set the mood
Rule #2 Scale – measure your space before you buy.  A small rug in a large space tends to visually shrink the room
Rule #3 Always! Always! Always!  Use a quality underpad. Not only does it add to the longevity of the rug, it cushions your steps; helps insulate the room as well as aids in noise reduction
Rule #4 Furniture should either fit the rug perimeter and or overlap the edge
Rule #5 Be open!  Be flexible!  Choose a rug with life.  Entertain the possibilities.  A rug that may look a little wild or bold in a monochromatic space can be a fabulous piece of art
Rule #6 Remember broadloom can be cut and bound for an inexpensive coordinate. You can choose the exact size you require vs. using the standards

The facts:

A simple guide to outline the various differentiators fiber/cost/useage/cleanability:

Cotton The least expensive, easy to clean, fibers are natural and soft.  Usually used as throw rugs and/or in low traffic areas such as bedrooms and baths
Wool Mid-to-high price points; requires professional cleaning. Often used in living rooms and/or common low traffic areas
Nylon- The strongest synthetic fiber; easy to clean.  High static probability; therefore not recommended for commercial use or for an office.  Great for basements, family rooms, kitchens and dining areas.  Pricing varies, more than cotton, comparable to some wool
Polyester Less expensive than nylon and wool. They are static resistant, very durable, and easy to clean
Olefin Mid price; often used for indoor/outdoor application.  They can withstand moisture and are very durable.  Static resistant.  Perfect for patios, dining areas, front porches and even offices

The options:

Loop They are just that – loops of fiber.  The most common example is Berber.  Very durable; however, a caution to pet owners, claws can damage the loops
Cut pile/
Low pile
Rug threads are trimmed, cut pile is soft, and plush.  Quite durable. Downside is the pile can be crushed and flattened.
Shag Plush long threads, a great textural application.  Very comfortable.  A little high maintenance although it hides a multitude of sins
Natural fibers.  Stains are a challenge.  Wears quickly.  They are not soft underfoot.  They offer amazing textural opportunities. 

NOTE** If you love this look there are fabulous synthetic versions available

Flat weave The weave is flat without pile. They are very durable and can be used in high traffic areas. (Example: A braided rug)

As you can see, there is no shortage of information relating to purchasing the rug of your dreams or finding a temporary inexpensive solution.

Do your homework.

Know what you are buying.

Love what you choose!

Happy shopping and enjoy!

Join us tomorrow for a fab post on out with the old, in with the new- some renovation tidbits!

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  1. Jennifer says:

    Very nice and organized post Jenn! Great job…..information we can all use:)

  2. Great info Jennifer, loving that blue stripe :) So nautical & fun!