What Size Area Rug do you Need?

Area rugs are the answer to many flooring and decorating problems.  Have a large great room that needs some cozy appeal?  Need to define seating areas?  Looking to add color and texture to a minimalist room?  Area rugs are a budget-friendly option for many decorating issues and budget makeovers. 

Choosing the right area rug is not the easiest task for the harried homeowner  - how do you know what size area rug to buy for your room?  It’s not as easy a question as you may think.  There are scale considerations for area rugs and their purposes.  Try this cheat sheet when deciding on the right size for your area rug:

Dining Rooms

You will need at least 8 feet in width.  Your biggest concern is making sure the rug is wide enough to not only fit the dining room table comfortable, but to make sure all the chairs, and all four legs of your chairs will fit on the rug.  When someone is seated at the table and pushes their chair back, they shouldn’t fall off the rug and break their neck.  Measure the width to ensure that your rug will be wide enough.

To determine the length, add 48 inches to the length of your dining room table.  On average, a dining room area rug will be at least 4 feet wider and longer than the length and width of the dining room table.

Room Sized Area Rugs

Most rooms on average will use an 8 x 11 foot area rug.  Try to leave an equal amount of space exposed on all sides of the rug so it doesn’t look off-centered.

Leave at least 12 inches between the rug and the wall, more if you have decent hardwood floors to show off.

You can allow the sofa or chairs that are against walls to have their back legs resting off the area rugs – just make sure it doesn’t make the furniture uneven looking – there are pieces you can add to the bottom of the legs to make them even – just make sure they’re stable as well.

Coffee Tables

To choose an area rug to go directly under the coffee table, of course you need to make sure all four legs of your coffee table rest on the rug.

Area rugs that are 4 x 6 feet or 6 x 9 feet are generally suitable for using under coffee tables.  Don’t be too funky and try to use round rugs with square tables – leave that to the experts – use a rectangular rug with rectangular coffee table and a round or oval area rug with a round or oval coffee table.

Leave exposed flooring showing between the area rug and the surrounding furniture.

Seating Areas

If you’re using an area rug to define a seating area or conversation grouping, use an 8 x 10 foot rug.  For smaller rooms and smaller groupings, you may be able to get away with using a 6 x 9.

Over 40% of ‘designing women’ (and men) are considering area rugs when redecorating their home, hope they follow these guidelines when considering what size area rug they need!