Rug Buying Guide

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Rug Buying Guide

Posted by RC Willey Community on October 17, 2022

3 Steps to Finding the Perfect Rug 

Nothing pulls a room together better than the right area rug. Versatile in design and function, area rugs are a natural focal point that helps set the mood of a space. However, we understand that it can be overwhelming to find the *right one.* But have no fear! RC Willey is here to help you on your journey of saying yes to the perfect rug. Follow these three steps:

Step 1: Start with Rug Sizing 

This one is pretty straightforward. Decide first what room/space you’re wanting a rug for, and we’ll go from there. Keep in mind that as a general rule, you’ll want to leave a minimum of 6 inches and a maximum of 18 inches of space between the edge of your rug and the walls to give your room the best aesthetic.  

Picking the Right Living Room Rug

  • In the living room, you’ll want the rug to be an anchor for your furniture setup. We recommend that all front legs stay on the rug to help blend the room nicely. 
  • Standard sizes such as 5 x 8 or 6 x 9 are great for smaller setups (i.e., loveseats, armchairs, small sofas) with front legs on the rug.  
  • Standard sizes such as 8 x 10 and 9 x 12 are more appropriate for mid-sized and larger setups (i.e., sectionals, chaise sofas, and multiple standard sofas). With these setups, place the rug under the furniture with just the front legs or all four legs on top. 

Shop Living Room Rugs

Picking the Right Dining Room Rug

  • Rugs are such a great addition to the dining area. Not only do they protect your floors from sliding chairs, but they also make the room more inviting by visually anchoring your dining furniture. 
  • For sizing, measure your table and add about 3 feet to both height and width. This provides enough room for chairs to stay on the rug when slid out from under the table.
  • If you have an expandable table, keep the expanded size in mind when choosing your rug. 

Shop Dining Room Rugs

Picking the Right Bedroom Rug 

  • Placing an area rug in your bedroom will help define the space and tie your bedroom décor together. If you have hard flooring, an area rug can also help protect your floors from scratches.  
  • For twin or full-size beds, we recommend placing a 5 x 8 or 6 x 9 area rug in your room. For queen or king-size beds, we would recommend an 8 x 10 or 9 x 12 area rug. 
  • Generally, it’s a good idea to place your rug under the front two-thirds of the bed and the front two legs of the nightstands; or under the entire furniture setup depending on the size of your room.  
  • Measure your bed and add about 3 feet on both sides for design purposes and to give enough room for your feet to walk on in the morning. 

Shop Bedroom Rugs

Picking the Right Outdoor Rug

Outdoor rugs can really add so much charm to your porch, patio, or deck! Machine-woven synthetic fibers such as polyester easily withstand the elements and are a dream to clean. Leaves, dirt, or mud covering your rug? No problem. Pressure wash or spray it down with a hose and let it dry out in the sun. It’s fade-resistant by nature, so you can rest easy knowing that it’ll withstand the test of time! 

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Step 2: Consider Material & Construction 

You want your rug to last and look good, too. Believe it or not, the right material and construction can make a big difference in the placement and durability of your rug!  

In the living room, we would recommend a low-pile, easy-to-clean wool or polyester rug due to its fade and stain-resistant qualities. Sometimes people think that rugs made from these materials are “scratchy” and “unappealing.” We’d like to show you how they are not only a gorgeous addition to your home but also comfortable, inviting, and durable. Take a look!

Shop Polyester Rugs

Want to create a personal haven for your room? Add a high-pile, hand-tufted thick shag rug with neutral soothing tones. Imagine waking up and stepping onto a soft, warm pillow... Yeah, it’s time to add that rug to your room. We usually like polypropylene and polyester rugs for this space – but because this room usually doesn’t deal with dirt or high traffic, focus more on the pile height that suits your fancy. 

Washable Rugs

Messes, crumbs, and spills! Should I even put a rug in the kitchen? If you’re wanting to cozy up the space or add some accent colors, we absolutely love how a rug can accomplish just that. Whether in the dining room or kitchen, hand-knotted wool or flat-weave jute rug can easily be maintained through their durable nature and their ability to absorb spills. You’ll definitely want something that is simple to clean, so we would also recommend our machine-washable area rugs (we’re not biased or anything, but we’re kind of in love with these). 

Step 3: Decide on Style, Pattern, and Design 


This can be the most intimidating part of finding that perfect area rug! It can be difficult to know how to find a rug that not only mirrors your personality but also meshes well with existing furniture and décor. Thankfully, there are some tried and true rules you can follow when determining what style is best for you. 

Rugs are like a “work of art” for your floor! Don’t be afraid to choose vibrant colors and abstract patterns, especially if the room is full of solid-colored furniture. If your room already has a ton of color veer towards a more neutral pattern and tone. When choosing which color, it’s best to decide what you’d like for the overall feel of the room. Darker, moody colors such as cool purples, blues, blacks, and grays will create a more intimate setting and potentially make the room smaller. Whereas light whites, pinks, oranges, and other neutrals can visually open up and brighten the space. Starting out with this in mind can help you in your search! We’ll go over the different styles you can choose from to understand how this correlates with existing decor. RC Willey has furniture and accessories for every style, taste, and budget.

These styles can feature abstract, floral, geometric, vintage, or other patterns for your specific taste! And we're going to let you in on a secret... We have a really easy way of finding the exact style and pattern for your rug. Just adjust the filters for your search and voila!  

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need a rug pad? 

Designers will always recommend a rug pad, no matter what rug you buy or where you place it! Not only does it hold your rug in place to prevent sliding, but it can also prolong the life of the rug by absorbing the impact of your footsteps – thus protecting the fibers from being damaged by constant floor traffic. If you have hard floors, this is a must as it adds warmth with the extra insulation from the pad. Having a rug is nice, but if you’re constantly having to readjust the position and lay it flat after some good rough-housing from the kids, you’ll most likely end up regretting adding that perfect splash of color to your room. Trust us, we speak from experience when we say - don’t make this mistake! 

You’ll want something breathable and comfortable, especially with hard floors. If hard flooring doesn’t get enough air, it tends to become discolored. Your rug pad should be an inch or two smaller than the rug. Be sure to verify the size of your rug and rug pad to ensure you purchase one that fits accurately. You may need to trim the pad with scissors or a razor to get an accurate fit. Visit our page for more information! 

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Can I Vacuum My Rug?

Yes, you can vacuum your rug! 

By removing the dust and dirt buildup that naturally occurs over time with a vacuum, you’re extending the life of your rug. However, vacuums are getting more and more powerful as the years go on, so make sure you do it the right way to protect your rug. Some newer vacuums have a specific “low-pile, area rug” option which will work for most rugs. If your vacuum does not have this feature, we recommend removing the beater bar as it can easily loosen or tear rug fibers. Using the gentle rug attachments is great and can also help remove dust on the binding of the rug as well. It is noteworthy to mention that some shedding is normal in the first few months of receiving your rug, so there is no cause for concern if this is happening.  

Shop Vacuums

How Do I Clean Spills?

Mud spots, milk spills, and smashed food... we get it! Life happens. That’s why spot-cleaning your rug is the best way to minimize stains. Most manufacturers recommend spot cleaning with mild soap and water using a clean, white cloth. Remember to only blot the stain, never rub it in. Treat the rug on both sides with the mixture, blot it with a dry cloth, and repeat until the stain fades away. If the stain is not coming out, it may warrant a trip to be professionally cleaned (we suggest doing this anyway every one to two years). 

How do I Extend the Life of my Rug?

The Yearly Rotation 

As a rule, rotate your rug a full 180 degrees every year. Doing so specific spots from fading or wearing more than others. Set that reminder up on your r up in your phone and forget about it! 

Use the Rug Pad 

Here’s our friendly reminder to get that rug pad! We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again... A rug pad provides extra cushioning and prevents slips by keeping the rug in one place. Your rug will have a better chance of survival from continual foot traffic by having the rug pad absorb the friction and pressure. 

Enjoy your New Rug!

Find the perfect rug for you and your home at RC Willey! Visit your local RC Willey or shop online 24/7 and add beauty, style, and texture to your living space!


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