Area rugs serve many purposes: to protect the floor underneath, to define a space, and to enhance and update your decor. Protecting the floor is a no-brainer, however, always make sure the backing of the rug and/or the rug pad will not harm the floor. Some rug backings can permanently discolor a vinyl floor, and certain rug pads can cause significant damage to hardwood floors. To be safe always buy your rug pads from your favorite flooring store and not at a discount or dollar store.
How does an area rug define a space? An area rug says, "This group of furniture belongs together." It unifies whatever furnishings are placed upon it. In open floor plans or multipurpose rooms, an area rug can help you designate between functional zones, as in, "this rug defines the family room and this rug defines the dining area." The size of an area rug also helps to define a space---the larger your area rug, the larger your room feels (and vice versa).
How can an area rug enhance your decor? It's an opportunity to bring in colors or patterns that coordinate with the rest of your furnishings. An area rug is one of those details that makes your room's decor feel "finished." It can also help warm up or soften hard surfaces like wood and tile flooring, which can come off looking and feeling cold underfoot.
So now that we know why you need an area rug, let's talk DOs and DON'Ts!
DON'T leave wood or tile flooring bare. Yes, having a rug makes your living room seating arrangement look better. And sound better. And feel better. As mentioned earlier, a rug is one of those don't-miss details that makes a room look finished. Rugs absorb sound and therefore make a room quieter-a hugely important factor for those of you with kiddos running around at high decibels. Rugs also feel warmer underfoot than wood or tile, and feel cushier if you're lounging on the floor. Even if you already have carpet, you can still add a rug---there are rugs pads available for rugs-over-carpet.
DO use appropriately-sized area rugs. As noted above, the size of your rug is immensely important, because it conveys the approximate size of the room. How do you know what size to get? Let's use a living room as an example. Some designers advocate having all of your furniture sitting within the outer perimeter of a rug, but most recommend having just the front legs of your seating pieces on top of the rug. By letting the rug run beneath the furniture, the implication in your mind's eye is that the rug continues indefinitely, and therefore, your space feels larger.
In a master bedroom, the typical placement of the rug is to run it beneath the bottom two-thirds of the bed, perpendicular to the bed. You want your area rug to be large enough that you can step down onto it when you get out of bed.
TIP: The vast majority of living rooms, dining rooms and master bedrooms will require an 8'x10' rug.
DON'T bring home the wrong-sized rug. Do your homework first (pun intended!). Machine made rugs come in very specific sizes. The generic sizes are approximately 2' x 8' (runner), 4' x 6', 6' x 9', 8' x 11', 10' x 13' and 12' x 15'. Start by measuring your room and determine the closest rug size that is at least two feet shorter than the length and width of the room. Next measure the size you think you need in your room and place a piece of paper on each corner. This will give you an idea of where the rug will be placed. If none of these sizes work for your room, you can have a rug custom made.
DON'T use a "postage stamp" rug. An area rug is not meant to anchor a coffee table. It's meant to anchor an entire living room furniture arrangement. So when you use an itty-bitty rug in a large seating group, it will look dwarfed in its surroundings.
DO think about what areas may be obscured by your furniture if you're considering a patterned rug. If you want to use a rug with an all-over repeat pattern, you're pretty safe, as there will be a consistent view of the pattern peeking out from around the furniture. The trick to using a rug with a larger, more asymmetrical design is to use it with furniture that has a more delicate or open/airy frame. DON'T hide special parts of your rug with big, bulky furniture.
DON'T shy away from custom options. Square and round shaped rugs are hard to find, as are off-standard sized rugs. If you think you have to settle for a too-small or too-large rug in your space, think again. We can create an area rug for you from any carpet in the showroom.
DO select your seating before your rug. As a general rule, you'll keep your sofa and chairs far longer than any rug, so they take priority in the purchasing cycle. Make sure you have those pieces nailed down before you start looking for rugs. There are an infinite number of rugs in the world but only a few sofas you will actually want in your home that fit within your space and budget. Once you know what those pieces are going to look like, you can move on to things like rugs and window treatments.
DON'T forget about a rug pad. The rug pad keeps the rug from moving and also protects the floor underneath. Rug pads also provide comfort underfoot and help the rug wear and perform better.
DO mix patterns of different proportions. If your curtains or a chair in the space features a print, you can absolutely still have a patterned rug. You just want to pick a rug with a pattern that is obviously different in scale than the other textiles sitting on or around it.
Need help finding the perfect rug for your home? Come in and see the beautiful rugs that Enhance Floors & More has in stock that you can take home today. See nothing that works? Browse through our catalogs or website to see thousands of area rugs, or consider a custom rug designed by you. Relax----we're here to help!
With Heavy Hearts
Many of you long-time clients will remember Sandra Smith. She worked with us for 22 years, first as the Manager of our Maid Service and later as a Design Consultant in the showroom. She also did in-home estimates with her "work husband" Jim Blake. Sandra retired from Enhance Floors & More in 2011. We are sad to tell you that Sandra passed away last week from complications from pneumonia. She will be greatly missed by everyone that loved her----family, friends and her Enhance family.
Thanksgiving Is Fast Approaching
If you're hosting Thanksgiving dinner for family and friends this year, advanced planning is a must. Don't let a long Thanksgiving to-do list overwhelm you at the last minute; here are some things to do this week to keep your to-do list under control.
Look for sales at the grocery store and stock up on staple items like paper products and decorations. Purchase some inexpensive toys for the kids in your family (there are some great buys at the dollar store!) to help calm the commotion on Thanksgiving Day.
Assess all your cooking and serving equipment. Do you have enough serving spoons, bowls, pot holders, trivets, etc.? Buy or borrow what you'll need on Thanksgiving Day.
Create your menu, make a master grocery list and print it out. Keep in mind the amount of cooking surfaces that you have and cooking times when planning your menu. Plan a few dishes that can be made ahead of time. If any of your guests are bringing food, double check or assign food dishes during the next step.
Create your guest list for Thanksgiving dinner. Check with your invitees to find out if they are bringing guests with them and what food (if any) that everyone is bringing.
Survey your home for any needed minor repairs.
If you'll be having overnight guests during Thanksgiving, inspect your guest room and other guest accommodations to make sure you have enough pillows, blankets, etc.
Clean your house from top to bottom. Wash the serving platters, china and polish the silver. Buy a few live Holiday plants and give your houseplants a little TLC.
If you plan to have any food catered or prepared elsewhere for pick-up, place your orders this week.
Pull out and inspect all linens and guest towels that will be in use on Thanksgiving. Launder, press or dry clean if needed. Prepare any food that can be frozen. Sharpen all knives. Purge the refrigerator. Place a new bag in the vacuum cleaner and charge the battery on the hand vacuum. Keep your home de-cluttered. Stock up the beverages you'll be serving and select the music you'll be playing. Purchase inexpensive plastic food containers for leftover food or for your guests to take food home in.