February 2023

Rug 101 | Laying down the basics

Revamping your space? A swift update to your floor coverings can wield an IMMENSE impact. One common query we encounter from clients is, “Which rug would best suit my space? What type, size, or style should I choose? Can I go bold or plush?” The questions—and choices—seem endless. So, I’ve crafted a little RUG 101 to guide you through this labyrinth.

Let’s dive in.

Topics We’ll Explore:

1. Loop Pile vs. Cut Pile vs. Weave
2. Different Wool Mixes
3. Choosing the Right Rug for Your Space

One fabulous thing to note is the choice is wonderfully endless.

An array of opulent and magnificent options exists across various budgets. Aesthetics, warmth, convenience, sustainability, wellness impact, acoustic insulation, durability, and maintenance ease—all factors to contemplate.

Virtually all rugs and carpets fall into two categories: Machine-made and handcrafted. While machine-made creations are gaining traction due to advanced techniques yielding more luxurious versions, we still hold a preference for traditional handcrafting. Nothing quite matches the allure of artisanal practices and the sheer uniqueness and beauty each piece possesses.

Breaking it down

1/ Loop Pile: A rug with a loop pile retains fibers that ARE NOT CUT. This type of carpet, constructed from several loops of carpet fiber, maintains its woven shape. Variations in loop fiber height can also form a patterned loop.

The appeal of a loop pile lies in its ability to obscure vacuum lines and footprints while being slightly less soft/plush underfoot. Berber and sisal stand out as two of the most popular varieties within the loop pile category.

Source: Pinterest [Berber/Boucle rug]


Source: Pinterest [Sisal rug]

2/ Cut pile: In cut pile carpets, the fiber loops are precisely CUT. This process exposes the ends of the carpet fiber, resulting in an upright pile. Cut pile rugs are generally softer than loop pile varieties and boast an array of lengths and thicknesses. Among the most favored cut pile styles are Saxony and Frieze.

Saxony cut piles are known for their plush and uniform appearance, ideal for areas with low traffic due to their susceptibility to showing footprints and vacuum marks. On the other hand, Frieze cut piles flaunt a more textured and casual appearance, their twisted fibers rendering them more resilient against matting and crushing.

Source: Pinterest [Saxony rug]

Source: Pinterest [Frieze rug]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3/ Weave: Woven carpets represent a premium product predominantly crafted from wool or a wool-based blend. Adopting a traditional rug-making method, these carpets are meticulously woven using a loom. The individual carpet strands are tightly woven into the backing, resulting in a sturdy and long-lasting piece. The durability of its structure means that a woven carpet can endure up to three times longer than a tufted carpet, making it a remarkable investment for long-term use.

The intricate weaving process grants woven carpets their exceptional strength and resilience, making them well-suited for areas with high foot traffic. Their remarkable endurance and classic appearance make woven carpets an elegant and enduring addition to any space.

For centuries, wool carpets have maintained a stellar reputation for their exceptional quality and resilience. Even in contemporary times, they remain a popular choice not only for residential spaces but also in the construction and hospitality industries due to their inherent luxuriousness. Wool, being a robust natural fiber, possesses remarkable aesthetic appeal and retention qualities. With proper care, wool carpets exhibit impressive durability, making them a worthwhile investment when considering an upgrade for your flooring.

Wool carpets typically come in two primary types: 100% wool carpets and those comprising an 80/20 wool mix. Both variations offer versatility in their usage, adaptable as either area rugs or in the broadloom style, which extends seamlessly from wall to wall. The flexibility in configuration allows for tailored solutions, catering to diverse preferences and functional requirements in various spaces.

Source: nuLoom

100% Wool Carpet:
100% wool carpet, often referred to as natural or New Zealand wool, distinguishes itself by its softness and lighter shade, particularly suitable for neutral or lighter color schemes. In contrast, British wool is denser, sturdier, and possesses a unique texture. Merino wool sourced from New Zealand is widely regarded for its superior quality. Apart from sheep wool, natural wool carpets can be crafted from various animals with similarly textured coats like llamas, alpacas, goats, and camels.

80/20 Wool Carpet / Wool Mix Carpet:
While wool inherently exhibits strength and performance, in certain scenarios, manufacturers blend it with other fibers, commonly synthetics, resulting in 80/20 wool carpets or wool blends. These blends are preferred to enhance fiber flexibility, stain resistance, and durability. They also simplify dyeing and printing processes. The combination of 80% wool with 20% synthetic fibers, such as nylon or polyester, has gained popularity due to the enhanced qualities it brings to wool-based carpets.

New Addition: Carpet Tiles

Carpet tiles are small swatches of broadloom carpet, designed to be laid and combined in diverse artistic arrangements. Often termed “modular carpets” or “carpet squares,” these tiles typically come in square shapes, including sizes like 48×48, 50×50, 60×60, and 96x96cm. Additionally, some manufacturers offer rectangular planks, providing a range of creative options.

In recent times, carpets have emerged as prominent elements in distinctive interior designs, gaining popularity for their ability to introduce color, comfort, and warmth. While modern designs often lean towards hard surfaces and sleek tiles, carpets offer designers extensive creative liberty. Carpet tiles, bridging this gap, amalgamate versatility in design and ease of installation, striking a balance between aesthetics and practicality.

Source: Flor

Breaking it down by space

For the Living Room
The living room stands as the heart of a home. When selecting a rug for this space, multiple elements should intertwine to express your individuality, infuse character into the space, and cater to the daily love the floor receives.

Choosing According to Design Style

Area rugs wield the power to completely transform a living space, setting the tone for furniture, artwork, and decor. They greatly influence the room’s formality and style, serving as a foundational piece.

Color and Materials

Consider the practicality of rug colors and materials. Darker hues and resilient fibers like wool are advisable for homes with pets or young children, offering durability and easy maintenance. For comfort enthusiasts, opt for luxuriant bamboo silk or the velvety richness of silk rugs, providing a sumptuous underfoot experience. Hosting frequent gatherings? Prioritize easy-to-clean materials to alleviate post-party stress.

Size and Functionality

The size of the rug plays a pivotal role. A small rug may diminish in significance amidst other décor, while an excessively large one might engulf the space, causing it to feel cramped. To strike a balance, let furniture guide your decision-making process. Alternatively, allowing the rug to end a few inches before the sofa can create a proportional and spacious feel. An ideal-sized and colored rug can become a captivating focal point, sparking conversations effortlessly.

Textures and Maintenance

While a plush velvet or shaggy rug might appeal aesthetically, they are better suited for spaces with minimal foot traffic, requiring additional care and upkeep. Consider the rug’s interaction with lighting; for instance, viscose material reflects light differently, altering its appearance based on natural and internal lighting. Its sheen may vary depending on the light, adding dynamic visual depth to your living space.

 

Source: Nordic knots

 

Rugs for dining

In many modern homes featuring open-plan layouts, the absence of a distinct dining room necessitates a clear demarcation of this space.

The ideal dining room rug serves a multifaceted purpose. Not only does it safeguard the flooring, but it also acts as an anchor, defining the dining area and contributing significantly to the desired aesthetic—be it formal, relaxed, or a bold statement piece.

Opt for rugs that make a bold impact while considering the functionality of the space. Pale-colored rugs might not be the most practical choice for areas prone to spills or messes, so it’s crucial to balance aesthetic appeal with practicality and usability in a dining setting.

 

Size of the Rug in Relation to Room Dimensions
In the dining room, the central feature is undoubtedly the dining table. Hence, accurately measuring the table becomes crucial before selecting a suitable rug.

To ensure a well-balanced and visually appealing setting, leave an even space on each side of the table, preferably around 65-70 cm larger than the table’s perimeter. For more spacious dining areas with ample room between furniture and walls, opting for a larger rug is advisable. Ideally, every furniture leg should rest on the rug to create a cohesive look. Additionally, selecting a rug that mirrors the shape of your dining table—whether round, oval, or rectangular—can further enhance the aesthetic appeal of the space.

Materials
Considering the substantial weight of furniture, frequent chair movement, and daily use, dining room rugs demand robust and durable materials. Opt for materials like wool—a resilient and sturdy natural fiber that is well-suited to endure the demands of this high-traffic area. Though durable rugs might have a higher initial cost, they are indeed a long-term investment that ensures longevity and reliability for years to come.


Source: RA’N interior design                                                                           Source: The house of silver lining

 

Rugs for the Bedroom: A Comforting Touch

Selecting a rug for your bedroom is more than a decorative choice; it’s an integral part of creating a cozy and inviting space where comfort meets aesthetics. The rug in your bedroom should be a reflection of your personal style while also providing functionality and warmth.

Begin with Precision in Measurements:

The starting point for finding the perfect bedroom rug is accurate measurement. Consider measuring the size of your bed to determine the ideal rug dimensions. Allow around 60-70 centimeters of space on either side of the bed, extending beyond the bed’s edges, to maintain proportion and balance in the room.

Embrace Size for Impact:

Considering the size of the bedroom itself is crucial. Interior designers often recommend having the rug extend approximately 25 centimeters off each wall, accentuating the room’s spaciousness and adding an inviting allure.

When in Doubt, Opt for Larger:

If unsure about sizing, it’s better to choose a larger rug. A larger rug creates a sense of luxury and coziness, complementing the room’s ambiance. An adequately sized rug envelops the space, enhancing the overall aesthetics and functionality of the room.

Functionality Matters:

In a bedroom, functionality intertwines with style. For a child’s bedroom, consider a rug with a greater surface area, providing a plush and soft surface. Is the rug intended to cover an existing floor you’re not fond of? In that case, opt for a size that adequately conceals the flooring you wish to downplay.

Placement is Key:

The rug’s placement in the bedroom is pivotal. Placing the rug perpendicular to the bed is a classic approach that frames the furniture and creates a focal point. It should feel like a natural extension of the room rather than just an add-on.

Adapting to Different Floor Types:

For bedrooms with hardwood floors, a strategically placed smaller rug can provide a soft landing for your feet as you get in and out of bed. The intention here is to add warmth and comfort without overpowering the room.

The bedroom rug serves as more than just a floor covering; it’s a foundational element that ties the room together, offering comfort, style, and a touch of luxury to your personal sanctuary.


Source: Pinterest

 

Rug Placement Tips

Living Room: The placement of a rug in the living room often depends on the room’s size and furniture arrangement. In smaller spaces, a larger rug that accommodates all furniture can create a unifying effect, positioned to float within the furniture arrangement, possibly under the coffee table. Conversely, larger rooms benefit from a larger rug that frames the space. Using multiple rugs can define distinct sections within the room, offering a unique touch and breaking up the space creatively.

Dining Room: Rug placement in the dining room primarily caters to the dining experience. Ensure the rug is sufficiently large to encompass all chairs comfortably around the dining table, even when pulled out for seating. It’s crucial to avoid chairs straddling the rug’s edge when pulled out. To ensure a perfect fit, measure the area once the chairs are moved away from the table.

Bedroom: The bed’s size determines the optimal placement of a rug in the bedroom. One common method is to partially tuck the rug under the bed, aligning it parallel to the bed’s frame and sliding it underneath, stopping just short of the nightstands. This positioning places roughly half the rug under the bed, with the bed centrally aligned. When positioning rugs in any room, take advantage of their ability to create visual illusions that enhance the overall aesthetic appeal of the space.

 

Each room’s unique layout and furniture arrangement offer opportunities to use rugs to define areas, add visual interest, and complement the overall design. Tailoring the rug placement to suit the function of each room optimizes the space while adding comfort and style.

Source: Fengshui by Bridget

 

Few elements within a home possess the decor-enhancing capabilities of a rug. It holds the unmatched potential to infuse a space with intrigue, charm, and personality, whether it serves as the room’s focal point, the final flourish, or as a spatial divider.

When seeking the perfect rug, consider its intended use, anticipated foot traffic, the appropriate size, suitable materials, and whether investing a bit more for durability and stain resistance is worthwhile. Your choice will undoubtedly impact the room’s ambiance and practicality.

We hope this information has offered some clarity. Stay tuned for the second part of this blog, where we delve into rugs for various spaces and explore effective maintenance tips.

 

Enjoy your rug journey.

 

Big love,

Aisha xox

Source: Good house keeping

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