Determining the appropriate area rug size and placement for your space can be challenging — a rug that’s too big can make the space look bare, while a rug that’s too small can make a space look crowded. And since rugs are often an investment, you want to get the sizing just right. Here’s our three-step formula for choosing the appropriately sized rug for your space – plus a few tips for area rug placement to use along the way!
For most spaces, there are typically two or three different ways to go about it.
Option 1: Everything on
All pieces of furniture will fit entirely on the rug. For living rooms, the rug should extend around all pieces of furniture by at least six inches on all sides. This can be a good solution for large living rooms with open floor plans, as well as dining rooms. The rug should extend around your dining room table and chairs by at least 24 inches so that dining chairs also fit on the rug, even when pulled out.
*Dining room tip: Shop for rugs that are the same shape as your dining table.
Option 2: Partially on
Used primarily in living spaces and bedrooms, the furniture legs will be partially on the rug (but not entirely). In a living room, the front legs of your couch, chairs, and end tables should fit on the rug. This can be a good option if your couch is against a wall or if your space is smaller, as it can give the same feeling of coziness without being too cramped. In a bedroom, the bed will be the focal point — so a rug should cover no less than half the length of the bed.
*Bedroom tip: An 8×10 rug typically works well for partially-on area rug placement with a queen-sized bed, and a 9×12 works well for a king-sized bed.
Option 3: Coffee table only
Useful only in living spaces, this can be a good option when working with a smaller space. Opt for area rug placement with only the coffee table directly on the rug, and pull all other pieces away from the rug.
Once you’ve decided the furniture configuration and area rug placement in your space, determining the size of rug is simple. Using painter’s tape, mark off the area you wish to cover with rug. A standard rug size probably won’t fit the space perfectly, but if you’re between sizes, always size up. Once you actually purchase a rug, you can shift furniture to appropriately fill the space.
Now for the fun part — shopping! Look for rugs that match the color scheme and aesthetic that you want to achieve in your space. Consider things like texture or pops of color to accent, and for high-traffic areas, be on the lookout for rugs that won’t easily show much wear and tear. Since you already know which rug will fit your space, don’t be afraid to shop for rugs online! (Just be sure to read the reviews and study up on the retailer’s return policy, just in case).