The Ultimate Area Rug Size and Placement Guide
Choosing the right area rug can be a challenging process. But don’t worry, we’ve got all you need to know to get it just right! We’re here to help you find the perfect rug to highlight your decor and bring harmony to your interior design for a welcoming space.
Common Rug Sizes Chart
Before you start shopping, you need to know two things: how to choose right rug size and how to place your rug. The perfect rug can breathe life into a room and unify your furnishings, especially in an open-concept space.
How to Measure and Place an Area Rug
Taking rug measurements will help you narrow down your choices so it’s easier to start sifting through styles and colors. To visualize how an area rug will look in your space, use masking tape to create a border on the floor. Maintain at least 18 inches of bare floor all the way around to frame the room’s layout and create pathways. Leave 8 inches of space if the room is smaller. Give yourself a 2-inch margin of error to avoid picking the wrong area rug size. You should also take the borders of a larger area rug size into consideration when measuring for an outdoor rug.
Once you have the tape placed exactly where you want it, use those dimensions to help you choose from the standard sizes for rugs. Find a fit that is closest to your desired measurements. If the size of your favorite rug isn’t within budget, layer a smaller version over a cheap, solid flatweave.
Don't Cheapen Your Living Room With the Wrong Rug Size
As a general rule, your area rug should be about the size of your living room’s seating area to ground the conversation space. To avoid looking awkward, your rug should be at least a foot wider than your sofa on either side. Rather than placing your area rug at the room’s center, use the setup of your seating to determine the best placement.
If you’re working with larger furniture, such as a sectional or furniture that is not placed against a wall, orient the rug with the shape of the room to help create visual flow and make the room appear larger.
Rug Placement for a Bigger, Better Living Room
All Legs On
Create a unified look in your living room with an area rug large enough to accommodate all of your furniture. The key to styling your seating area on top of a large rug is to maintain at least a few inches of space beyond where your sofa and chairs sit. The rug size helps organize the seating area and create distinction in the room.
Front Legs On
You can still create a cohesive look without the cost of a room-size rug. If your seating configuration doesn’t allow for all your living room furniture to be placed on the rug, tuck it just under the front legs of your sofa and chairs to keep your seating area unified.
All Legs Off
While not usually recommended, sometimes a small rug can be a budget-friendly option and still add style and comfort to your living room. If you’re working with a smaller room, consider a small rug that floats in the center of your seating arrangement. So long as it’s properly centered among your furniture, a smaller area rug will look intentional and well-styled.
For an unconventional option, choose a large round rug to distinguish your sitting area. Opt for a standard-size rug that is large enough to accommodate all of your furniture with a few inches to spare, or at least large enough to accommodate the front legs of each piece.
Cozy Up Your Bedroom With the Right Size Rug
They can provide a soft cushion underfoot and create a central focus for your room. Your budget will help you narrow down the options, but the layout of your bed and end tables should primarily influence the rug size you choose. For more rug buying tips, read our guide on Choosing an Area Rug for Your Bedroom.
Where to Put Your Bedroom Rug to Wake Up Refreshed
All Furniture On
If you’re working with a large master bedroom, consider a rug size large enough to fit your bed and both nightstands when it’s placed perpendicular to them. For a larger room, an 8- by 10-foot rug is the perfect size to accommodate a king- or queen-size bed and end tables.
Just the Bed On
If you have attractive flooring but want to add more comfort, then tuck a 6- by 9-foot rug under the bed just up to the nightstands to provide soft cushioning where it matters most. Smaller rugs are more cost effective and won’t completely hide your beautiful flooring.
Flanking the Bed
One great budget-friendly way to achieve the comfort of a larger rug is to place a runner rug on either side of the bed. Runner rugs and 2- by 6-foot rugs will give you the soft underfoot feel when getting in and out of bed for a fraction of the cost of a bigger rug size.
Foot of the Bed
If you have wall-to-wall carpeting, then you probably aren’t looking for a rug to provide comfort – but you can still get the style and panache of an area rug by placing it just under the foot of the bed. This technique can give you space in front of the bed to create a seating arrangement with accent chairs or a bench, adding more functionality to your room. Look for a 5- by 8-foot rug to achieve this contemporary look.
Size Your Dining Rug to Your Family Table
Laying down a rug is an easy, stylish way to warm up your dining room and protect your flooring. Here are a few tips to consider when choosing the right size rug for your dining room.
First, it’s important to keep in mind that whatever rug size you choose, it should extend at least 24 inches beyond the chairs to accommodate guests moving in and out from the dining table. When in doubt, go for the larger size. Aside from size, shape is also a key factor when shopping for the right area rug for your dining room. Consider the shape of your dinner table to help determine the size of your seating area.
Catch Crumbs With the Perfectly Placed Dining Room Rug
Match the Table Shape
Rectangular dining tables look best centered over rectangular rugs. If there is a generous gap between the edges of the rug and your other dining room furniture, like a buffet or bar cart, then consider sizing up to get the most coverage possible under your dining chairs.
The shape of the room can help determine the rug shape you choose. If you’re working with a square room for instance, then a square rug will emphasize its shape and enhance the look of you room, regardless of the shape of your dining table.
Contrast the Table Shape
Square dining tables are commonly paired with rectangular or square rugs to reinforce the overall silhouette of the table and room. However, if you’re looking for a more playful design, you can pair a square table with an oversized round rug for a bold look.
Similar to square tables, round dining tables can be complemented by both square and round area rugs. A round rug works with the shape of your dining table to create a cohesive visual statement. If you want to create a look that’s unexpected, opt for a square rug.
Get the Skinny on Runner Rug Size
Using a runner rug helps guide the eye. Placing it in a high traffic area keeps your style flowing throughout your home. Not only do runner rugs look beautiful, but they’ll also protect your flooring from excessive wear and tear. Use a rug pad to prevent your runner from scratching hardwood floors. To measure for right size of rug pad, read our full Rug Pad Guide.
Arrange a Runner Rug to Lead a Room With Style
Placing a runner in your kitchen enhances style and comfort underfoot during daily routines such as cooking and washing dishes. Add warmth to the space by arranging a non-slip runner between the counter and aisle or under the kitchen table. For help picking a rug with a cleanable weave, read our Tips on Choosing a Kitchen Rug.
Hall and Entryways
Don’t forget about your hallways and entryways when choosing rugs for your home. Entryway rugs help create a welcoming ambiance when guests pass through your front door. Not only are they a practical option for protecting floors from tracked-in dirt, but they’re an immediate introduction to your home’s style. Center your runner in front of doorways create a clear path from one room to the next, or place it opposite of hallway furniture, such as a console table.
24 by 60 inches is the standard rug size for a bath runner, but whether you have a half bath or master bath, the rug should be placed in front of the tub or shower to help you avoid slipping. For help picking a rug material that’s durable, antibacterial, and water resistant, read our guide on How To Choose Bath Rugs and Mats.
Got a picture of your rug in mind? Now that you’ve conquered the tedious portion of finding the right rug size, you can have fun choosing the best pattern, color, and style for your home. Check out our guide on Rug Styles to get inspired and find the perfect rug for you.
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