In the market for a new rug? With so many styles and patterns to choose from, how do you know which rug will best suit every room in your home? Do you want something lightweight and suitable for the outdoors, or something plush and cozy that you can sink your feet into? Let’s take a look at the best colors, patterns, and materials for your potential new decor piece. After all, rugs are the centerpiece of your living space, and you want to make sure the one (or multiple) you choose brings the entire room together.

Measuring Your Room and Furniture

The most important aspect of purchasing a new rug is the size of your room. Have you ever found the perfect piece of furniture online and ordered it only to find out it was much smaller or bigger than you imagined? Rug sizes are especially important as a too-big rug in a bold color can overwhelm your room, whereas an intricately decorated rug that is too small can be easily missed and underappreciated. First, take measurements of the room’s overall length and width. Next, consider the size of the furniture that already exists in the room, such as a table, chairs, or a bed. According to Apartment Therapy, if you have a large bedroom, for instance, you should find a rug big enough to span across your bed and any nightstands. If you have a smaller bedroom, just make sure your rug covers one-third of the length of the bed. 

Choosing a Color and Pattern 

If you already have a room theme or color scheme in mind, you may want to consider starting your rug shopping journey by matching your rug to your room’s theme. If your room is minimalist or boho with lots of light wood and furniture, you might consider a more neutral rug or something made of an all-natural material like jute or hemp. Even if you prefer a room with a more clean, muted color palette, your rug doesn’t have to be completely plain. There are plenty of patterned, traditional-style rugs in more earthy colors like beige and brown. This will give your clutter-free room just a touch of visual interest.

If your room has a more contemporary or modern style, maybe you’re looking for a rug that offers a pop of color or a bold pattern. Geometric and Midcentury modern rugs with stripes, squares, and other shapes can add a sense of movement to a room without making it too busy. Bold and bright colors like orange, red, and blue are a great way to liven up a room, especially in rooms that already have a lot of black and white, such as a kitchen. 

Of course, floral and traditionally patterned rugs are always classic too. These feel warm and cozy, and are especially great in living rooms and dining rooms.

How to Choose a Rug Material

Choosing a rug material can be a very personal choice depending on your lifestyle and ability to care for a rug. If you prefer your bedroom, living room, or other space to have a luxurious feel, you might opt for a vintage wool or silk rug. While these do generally require more upkeep, they can really improve a space. If you’re looking to place your rug outside or in a place with a lot of moisture, such as a kitchen or bathroom, and prefer something more lightweight and modern (that’s easily washable), you might prefer cotton or even a synthetic rug. If sustainability factors into your rug choice, don’t worry—while vintage wool pieces tend to be the most sustainable, there are also plenty of polyester and nylon rugs that make use of recycled plastic in an attempt to help the Earth.

If you have a preference for rugs of the plush and fuzzy variety, you might even consider pile thickness. High-pile rugs, like shag rugs, tend to be more comfortable and luxurious than low-pile rugs.

Purchase a Rug Pad

Did you know that almost all rugs require the use of a rug pad? Rugs made of synthetic fibers may not require them, but it’s always best to place a rug pad underneath cotton, wool, shag, and any heavy rugs. Rug pads help keep rugs from slipping and prevent hardwood floors from sustaining damage. They can also provide insulation and noise reduction.

Take an Online Quiz!

If you don’t have a specific rug in mind, try taking a personalized rug quiz. Why not let a professional do the interior decorating work for you? Rug quizzes can help you identify which rug will best suit the style and size of your room. You could even potentially seek out a virtual reality feature that will allow you to virtually place a rug in its designated room before you buy it. If you’re having trouble finding a rug to accommodate a uniquely sized or designed room, some rug retailers even offer customizable patterns and sizing.