How To Choose The Best Rug

Did you know that the rug you choose for your space can instantly make your room look larger or smaller?

That’s why it’s so important to get this one element right.

With the endless amount of rug options available, selecting the perfect rug for your space can seem like an intimidating task.

This guide will take all of the stress out of rug shopping by teaching you easy tips and best practices for choosing a rug!

Arianne Bellizaire Interiors

There are two main things to consider when making your rug selection: size, shape and style.


Selecting the right size rug for your space is so important because it affects how large or small your space will appear.

When choosing a rug for the living room, a good rule of thumb is to make sure the rug is large enough to under the sofa.

If the sofa is against a wall, make sure that at least the front legs of the all the furniture pieces are on the rug.

If the seating area is not against any walls and is arranged in the middle of the room, select a rug that is large enough for all of the furniture to fully fit on the rug.

In dining spaces, choose a rug that has plenty of space to fit your table, chairs, and even space to pull out the chairs from under the table.

This rule applies for round, square, and rectangular rugs under a dining table.

This ensures the no one will trip on the edge of the rug and prevents chairs from hitting the edge of the rug when they are pulled out.

In the bedroom, you want to choose a rug that will allow you to be able to feel the rug under your feet when you step out of bed. There are several ways to achieve this.

If you have a spacious bedroom, select a rug that is large enough to underneath your entire bed and both of your nightstands.

If your room is not large enough for that, then choose a rug that will go under your bed and up to the front of your nightstands.

Another option for tiny bedroom spaces or spaces with the side of the bed against a wall is to choose a runner rug that will go alongside the bed and under the nightstand. Always avoid putting a small rug in front of the foot of your bed.

Smaller rugs can be used in one large room to create defined zones. Rugs do a great job of separating and defining spaces.

If you are decorating a large room with several different spaces, rugs can be a great tool to break up the space.


The size of your room and the layout of the furniture will determine which rug shape will work best for your space.

Typically, round rugs work best in BOTH square and round rooms.


Round rugs also work great under round tables such as under a round dining table.

Style at Home / Tanya Krpan

Rectangular rugs work best in rectangular rooms.

Decorist / AVE Styles


Now that you know what shape and size rug will work best in your space, it’s time for the fun part: choosing the right style.

The color will depend on the overall scheme of your room. Consider what colors are present in your space as well as the color of your floor.

You want to be sure the rug with contrast with the color of your floors in a pleasing way. A colorful rug would add a nice pop of color, while neutral colored rug can complement the colors already present in the space.

The texture of the rug will depend on how you want the rug to feel as well as how you want it to appear visually.

Arianne Bellizaire Interiors

The material of the rug is important and should be determined by the use of the space.

  • Wool rugs are great for high-traffic spaces because they have a sturdy pile.
  • Natural Fiber rugs such as jute and sisal have a rougher, durable texture which can be great for casual, relaxed spaces.  
  • For formal, luxurious spaces, opt for something soft such as a wool or silk rug.  

With so many patterns, textures, and color options, you will be sure to find something that fits your space perfectly!


Many people ask whether or not rug pads are necessary.

The answer is always YES for several reasons.

  1. The first and possibly most important reason is safety! Rug pads prevent rugs from shifting, moving, and bunching while walking.This is a problem that occurs especially on hard floor surfaces such as wood, concrete, and tile flooring.
  2. The second reason is cleanliness! The ridges in rug pads trap and collect dirt and dust particles from your rug. They also protect your floor from spills that may happen on your rug.
  3. The next reason is that they increase the life of your rug and the life of your floor! The rug pad reduces friction on the bottom of your rug that could cause it to age quickly. It protects your floor by protecting it from a collection of dirt and particles that could potentially scratch your floor or add too much wear and tear to the carpet.
  4. The last reason rug pads are important is because they provide a more comfortable and cushioned surface to walk on!

Rug maintenance is crucial in order to keep your rug looking good over the years.

To keep your rug in great condition, consider these 3 tips:

  • Rotate your rug especially if sunlight hits one particular area more than others
  • Spot clean immediately to avoid stains
  • Again, use a pad to protect the rug from developing uneven grooves due to furniture placement or frequent walking patterns.

Hope you found these tips helpful! Let us know what your “aha” moment was when reading this post in the comments below!

If you loved this post, check out the other posts in our Design 101 series:

Design 101: How to Hang Curtains

Design 101: Bathroom Heights

Design 101: How to Hang a Great Gallery Wall

Design 101: How to Pick The Perfect Bedside Table

Design 101: Creating a Luxe Bed

Design 101: Deciding on the Best Rug

5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Designing Your Space

How To Hire Your Dream Contractor

Want some ideas on how to refresh some bargain finds? Check out this video!

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Author: Arianne Bellizaire

Interior designer, blogger, and public speaker Arianne Bellizaire creates spaces that are beautiful yet highly functional for her clients. She served as one of only nine 2015 High Point Market Authority Style Spotters, and she has been featured in Rue Magazine, House Beautiful Online, GoodHousekeeping, EditorAtLarge, U.S. News & World Report, Roomhints,, USA Today, and MyFitItUpLife!

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