rug 101: Which Rug Shapes & Sizes Work Best For Your Space?


Have you recently moved into a new home and are wondering which rug to choose? Or perhaps you’re looking to upgrade your existing rug. In either case, selecting the right rug is essential for completing the look of your living space.

For starters, when choosing a rug size for your home decor, you’ll want to consider the shape of your room, the furniture that will be placed on top of it, and any doors or pathways that need to remain clear. In general, the rule is to select a rug large enough to fit under all the furniture in your seating area.

Once you’ve chosen your size, it’s time to determine the shape. Rectangular, square, round or oval — how do you decide? The answer comes down to personal preference and what will complement the design of your living space. Then there’s the color and pattern — choosing one that enhances your room’s color scheme and style.

Whether you’re an interior designer helping clients select rugs or a homeowner shopping for something new for your own home, understanding how to choose the right shape & size for your living space is important. In this blog post I’ll cover all things related to making an informed decision about purchasing a rug!

Understanding the Layout of Your Living Space

When it comes to choosing the right area rug for your living space, the first thing you need to consider is the layout of each room. Start by measuring the length and width of each room and sofa arrangement. If you want all your furniture sitting atop the rug, you’ll need one large enough to fit under all of it. A general rule of thumb is that a rug should be at least as wide as any furniture it sits beneath.

In addition to size, pay attention to the shape of each rug. Do you want a rectangular, square, round, or oval shape? Keep in mind that the rug’s shape should complement your furniture and contribute to a balanced composition. For example, try keeping an oval coffee table atop an oval-shaped rug. Make sure to factor in any doors or pathways that need to remain clear when determining the exact size and shape of your rug.

Identifying the Different Rug Shapes

Once the size of the rug is determined, it’s important to pick one that’s the right shape. Generally, you want a rug that complements the shape of your furniture. For example, pair a round rug with a round table or an oval table and rectangle rugs for rectangular tables. This will help define the conversation area and add an element of balance to the room.

It’s also important to consider any pathways or doors in your room that need to be kept clear. It would be frustrating if you bought a large rug only to find that it blocks off your bathroom door or is too close to your entryway. Consider where people will need to walk and what furniture they’ll need to access, while still keeping everything balanced and elegant.

Calculating the Right Size for Your Rug

When it comes to choosing the right size for your rug, the most important thing to consider is how much space you need around your furniture. You want the rug to be large enough so that your furniture will sit on top of it comfortably and the overall look is balanced.

A general rule of thumb is to choose a rug that is large enough to accommodate all the pieces in your seating area. For example, if you have a sectional sofa in an L-shape, you’ll want a rug large enough to fit all parts of the sectional on it. You should also make sure that your rug is at least 6 inches wider (8 inches is ideal) than your sofa on both sides.

In order to determine what size will work best for you, it’s important to measure not only the room but also any furniture that will be placed on top of the rug. This will help you decide which shape and size works best for your needs.

Next, factor in any doors or pathways that need to be kept clear and make sure there’s enough room for people or pets to move through easily. You don’t want a large rug blocking off these areas as it can create an uncomfortable traffic flow in your space.

Once you have an idea of the size, shape, and layout that best suits you, consider what type of color or pattern would work best in the room. Choose a design that complements your color scheme and enhances the overall style of your living space.

Selecting a Color & Pattern That Fits Your Decor

Once you know the size and shape of the rug that fits your room, it’s time to decide on a color and pattern. Just like with size and shape, rug colors and patterns can completely change the look of a room. So it’s important to make sure you choose the right one.

There are a few key things to keep in mind when selecting a color and pattern:

  1. Fabric: The fabric of your rug is essential as this will dictate how it looks and feels in your home. Consider softer fabrics such as wool or cotton, or durable synthetic materials such as polyester or olefin.
  2. Color: Choose a color that ties in with elements already existing in your home such as wall colors, furniture pieces, bedding or curtains. You can also opt for a neutral shade to create an understated look, or go bold with brighter hues to really make a statement.
  3. Pattern: The pattern should be chosen based on how much visual interest you want to bring into the room. Choose from subtle prints like stripes or chevrons for less impact, or opt for larger patterns for more intense design statements such as geometric shapes, animal prints and more intricate designs.

Finally, remember that the rug isn’t just about the esthetics; it should also be comfortable for lounging and entertaining guests! With these important tips in mind, you’ll be able to choose the perfect rug for your living space!

Tips to Maximize Comfort & Style With the Right Rug

When shopping for a rug, there are some crucial considerations to keep in mind. One of the most important is the size. You want to choose a size that defines the space, but also allows for the furniture on top of it. The general rule is that your rug should be large enough to fit under all the furniture in your seating area.

For example, for a living room, aim for a rug that’s at least 8×10 feet. For smaller rooms, measure the space and consider how much of it you want covered with a rug—it can be any size from 4×6 feet or even smaller. Think about any doors or pathways that need to be clear as well; if you have an open floor plan with multiple entryways, a round or oval shape might work better than rectangular or square rugs.

Finally, choose the right color and pattern that will complement your room’s color scheme and enhance its overall style. Look at photos online as inspiration and don’t be afraid to experiment with different materials—wool will last longer and feel softer than cotton, while jute is great if you’re looking for an inexpensive but durable option.


When it comes to choosing the perfect rug for your space, you have to consider the size and shape of the room, what kind of furniture will be on top of it, and the overall look and feel you’re trying to create. By taking the time to measure the room and the furniture, choosing the right shape and size, and selecting a rug color and pattern that complements your room’s color scheme and enhances the overall style, you can find the perfect rug to make your home look and feel the way you want it to. No matter what type of rug you choose, you can rest assured it will provide you with comfort and style that will last for years to come.

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