Style? Pur­pose? Un­der fur­ni­ture or not? James Tre­ble helps you find the per­fect fit for your home.

Homes+ (Australia) - - CONTENTS - James Tre­ble is a qual­i­fied colour con­sul­tant/in­te­rior de­signer with over 20 years’ ex­pe­ri­ence within the build­ing and de­sign in­dus­tries.

James Tre­ble ex­plains how to choose the right style and shape for any room.


THERE ARE MANY GREAT REA­SONS to add a rug to your home, from bring­ing warmth and char­ac­ter to dis­guis­ing out­dated tiles or tim­ber. Be­fore buy­ing, look at the style or theme of your home – and if you don’t have one, let the rug be the be­gin­ning of a new look, start­ing from the floor up. Re­mem­ber that pat­tern and tex­ture will still work in years to come, but a bold colour may go out of style.

If you have a pet or young chil­dren, look for eas­ily cleaned styles, like hard­wear­ing jute, which won’t cause al­ler­gies and can be taken out­side for a hose and dry in the sun. And buy the best qual­ity you can, as a great rug will last a life­time and more. Here I’ve out­lined four dif­fer­ent room sce­nar­ios to help you de­cide on the right rug for your home. Where there’s a large sur­face area, the rug be­comes part of the room. These two dif­fer­ent styles of rug (above) work suc­cess­fully to cre­ate zones. The bold striped rug un­der the din­ing table pro­vides drama and makes a state­ment for the din­ing zone, while the liv­ing room rug has sub­tle tex­ture and pat­tern. Dark fur­ni­ture in the liv­ing room bal­ances the dark stripes of the din­ing area rug.

SHAPE Un­der a rec­tan­gle din­ing table, a rec­tan­gu­lar rug is a no-brainer. The stripes add to the feel­ing of width in the room. Choos­ing the same shape in the liv­ing area al­lows the rugs to work har­mo­niously, with­out be­ing “matchy matchy”.

PLACE­MENT The din­ing suite can com­fort­ably sit on top of the am­ply sized rug, even when the chairs are out. The sep­a­rate liv­ing zone is de­fined by the lighter rug, and both rugs run in the same di­rec­tion. A size larger would al­low the front legs of the arm­chair to sit on the rug, but its slen­der legs don’t look out of place di­rectly on the floor.

STYLE Size and shape should re­late to the room size, as well as fur­ni­ture place­ment. Rec­tan­gu­lar rugs suit most room lay­outs, but it’s worth mea­sur­ing liv­ing ar­eas (and hall­ways, en­try and bed­rooms) to en­sure a com­fort­able fit, with some floor ex­posed around the perime­ter. Mix­ing and match­ing rugs adds char­ac­ter, es­pe­cially to an open-plan room.


Adding a rug to a din­ing area cre­ates an invit­ing feel, mak­ing any event spe­cial. The trick is to use a rug that’s in the right pro­por­tion for your din­ing set­ting. This lighter rug (be­low) helps to sep­a­rate the dark rus­tic din­ing table and floor, al­low­ing the tim­bers to match with­out blend­ing into each other.

SHAPE This rec­tan­gu­lar rug works per­fectly for the rec­tan­gle din­ing table, while the wider bor­der adds the feel­ing of width in the room. It could even be slightly longer to ac­com­mo­date the header chairs when peo­ple are seated.

PLACE­MENT The ef­fect of rug and fur­ni­ture place­ment can change the vis­ual di­men­sions of a room with­out mov­ing any walls. Note that this room is longer than it is wide, so plac­ing the table and rug along the wall in­stead of along the win­dow makes the room feel wider. Plac­ing them the op­po­site way would make the room feel longer and nar­rower.

STYLE Re­ally con­sider the style of rug you place un­der a din­ing table, as it’s ob­vi­ously a high-risk food drop area! For ex­am­ple, avoid an ex­pen­sive silk rug – save some­thing like that for a low-traf­fic bed­room.

RUG RULE Po­si­tion­ing the front feet of the sofa on the edge of the rug in­te­grates your space. In the zone Use rugs to map out the dif­fer­ent “rooms” in an open-plan space.

To­gether again

Rugs are great for renters: they bring to­gether old fur­ni­ture in new sur­round­ings. RUG RULE Choose easy-to-clean ma­te­ri­als for un­der the din­ing table.

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