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Top Ten Tips Before Buying a Floor Rug

The Scattermats Team has put together a list of basic facts and figures to make shopping for a Floor Area Rug or Carpet Runner just that little bit easier! If you are unsure where to start or what to consider before buying any old rug, then this small guide should help you!

Buying the Perfect Rug or Runner

Buying floor rugs can be an overwhelming task with such a large selection and multiple locations to choose from. But before you start spending money, you should first figure out exactly where you need it to go and what purpose it will serve. Is it for decoration or going under a dining table? Is it for your lounge or your kitchen? All these things need to be considered, and below we will help you think about that. We have suggested the following points to be the most helpful based on more than 30 years of experience in helping our customers. We also have helpful articles such as, Buying Tips for Rugs Online or In-store or How to Plan Before Buying Floor Rugs to assist in looking for that perfect rug or runner.

Determining the Size, Colour and Type of the Perfect Rug for You

First, consider the area your rug or runner will need to go. Is it going under a pool table or dining table? Is it going next to a couch or being used outside on the patio? This is the easiest step and generally speaking the quickest. Once you have determined where you are going to place your floor rug, you will need to start considering the following:

        1.   What Size Rug do I Buy? Will a Larger Size Rug Fit My Area?

  •  To best determine what size rug to buy, we recommend placing a bed sheet in the chosen rug location and folding it up to the desired size of the space you need filled. This gives you a clear visual of how the floor rug will fit. Move the sheet around to find the best position, such as away from your lounge or against your lounge, until you are absolutely happy with where it sits. We recommend leaving the rug about 40cm away from the edge of your lounge to significantly avoid large amounts of wear and tear. Once you are happy with positioning, measure the length and width of the sheet to find out the size you can accommodate. Trying to use a sheet may not work for all situations, like for a hallway runner for example. In these cases, use a measuring tape or bathroom mats and towels to find the best size and length needed. 

2.   What Design do I Want? Traditional or Modern? 

  •   With a size in mind, next you should consider what kind of design to aim for. Generally, this is dependent on your home decor and your personal taste. If your home and furniture are new and modern, then a modern or contemporary floor rug should be considered first, but sometimes a Persian-styled rug can add great style and contrast. Something else to consider is choosing a rug with no design at all, like a shag. Something simple can often fit a room better than something with a nice design, especially if the surrounding decor is very busy. This leads to a general rule of thumb, which is that if your lounge and curtains have quite a busy pattern, it can be better to go with a fairly simple designed rug. Many shag rugs are plain but not always practical due to the thickness of the pile and the traffic of the area they are put in.

3.   What Colour Rug or Runner do I Need?

  •  Determining the colours of your rug is the next step, and is one of the more important ones that once again boils down to personal preference and home decor. For example, if your room has mainly neutral tones, then a contrast in colour can make the rug really stand out rather than blend in. If the area has feature walls, then we generally suggest a rug with at least one similar tone that matches, so as to not detract from the feature wall itself. With a room that has not yet been decorated, we would recommend finding a rug design and colour of your liking first, then selecting at least one of the hues in this rug as your feature colour to help bring the room together. A good fact to remember is that light coloured rugs make a room feel larger, while dark or deep colours like burgundy creates the impression of being smaller and more cosy.

4.   What if I Have more than One Rug in the Same Area?

  •  If your room is an open plan living space or you can see other rugs from that area, we would recommend that all the rugs be matching with the same design and colour where possible. This prevents them from clashing with each other in a severe way, and generally helps solidify theme in regards to decor. Sometimes this does not work or may not be needed though, and sometimes having two different coloured rugs of the same design can work perfectly fine. Taking into consideration different pile types and heights can help greatly as well. For example, placing a Shag rug and a Persian rug in the same room can still work providing they have similar tones, but they will have very different looks due to the yarn which may change the effect.

5.  How do I Know what Quality I Need?

  •  Have you found a rug that you are in love with, but are worried if it will cope with a high traffic area? The best way to figure out if it will cope is to find out the pile type, density and fibre of the rug, which are all factors that determine overall quality. Rug Pile density is a major factor used to determine the quality of any rug, be it modern, traditional or anything in-between. For example, for high traffic areas it is recommended to have a rug with a medium to thick density of more than 500,000 points per square meter and above. The density of the rug should be easily accessible, but if you are ever unsure you can always talk to any sales representative and they should be able to help you. To further make sure that your rug will cope with a high traffic area, rotate your rugs regularly to help distribute the wear more evenly.

6.   Will the Type of Floor i Have Effect my Choice?

  •  The type of floor on which you place your rug will most definitely effect what kind of rug you may wish to get. If it’s a carpeted or hard floor surface then slippage may be a problem, however, if you use heavier or thicker rugs then movement will be minimised. It is good to keep in mind that cheap rugs are usually thin and light and will most likely move around on carpets and hard floors. If you have found a rug you are absolutely committed to, but are worried it will move on your hard floor, then an easy solution is to buy a rubber anti slip rug underlay and place it under the rug itself to stop it moving around. To stop your beloved rug moving on carpeted floors, you can buy a rug underlay non-slip rug pad and put it under your rug. Both of these products come highly recommended!

7.   How Easy is it to Clean my Rug?

  •  Having thought about every factor above, the Scattermats Team generally recommends you take into consideration maintenance and cleaning of your rug. This is where knowing the quality really helps find the answer. If you have a low quality rug, there is a high chance that it will have very low stain resistance, but might require very little maintenance. Finding out how easy it is to vacuum your rug, as well as any special factors like whether it is static resistant, can be key in making a decision on buying a particular floor area rug. These important details should be available to be easily found on the chosen website, or can be found by calling up the sales representative from your chosen store.

Buying Rugs Online or From a Store?

         8.  Look Around Before you Buy!

  •  With the above factors taken into consideration, you now have a few choices. Firstly, we recommend pre-shopping on an online rug store before buying any rugs or runners, as this will save you time and money rather than having to drive around to different rug shops just to see if they have rugs for sale that you like. On this note, we would suggest bearing in mind that some pictures of rugs and mats online are not always true to life, usually due to different colour settings on different computers and devices. You will also need to check if the online rug store is in your country and located within driving distance if you are going to buy your rug in-store. Trying to get a good indication of what range is actually available from that rug store can be very helpful before heading out to the rug shop in person.          

9.  Make Sure to Check Before you Buy Online!

  •  Before you buy your rug online, it is always a good idea to check if it is an owned and operated business from within your country (there should be in the “about us” section you can check) with a physical rug store location, rather than a fly by night business. The rug website should have a SSL security certificate or something similar, as this is for insurance cover for online theft. If they do not have an SSL certificate, we do not recommend purchasing from them. It can also be wise to check to make sure if they mention free shipping country wide. You can check with them first about this as many only deliver to major CBD areas and charge more for all other areas. Make sure that they have a valid email and phone details so you can check these things, otherwise there is a chance that the website you are ordering from is fraudulent.

10.  Final Steps!

  •  Once you have decided where to buy your rugs from, remember to bring along your measurements and any relevant decor items if needed (photos can be super helpful for your sales representative!). Be sure to check prices in more than one rug store and check their return policy, as well as be sure to ask the sales person about quality and whether the rug would perform well in the area chosen. Remember that they are there to help you make a good informed decision!

We hope this was helpful in your quest to find the perfect rug or runner!