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Help and Advice Centre

Measuring for a Rug

Before buying a rug, being able to visualise it in your home is essential, including how it fits in a space. You may have an idea of the colour, shape and style you’d like, but how do you find out if it fits the unusual shape of your room?

Whether you’re looking for an area rug for your living room or a corridor rug for your hallway, knowing how it’ll fit your home is essential. So, to help you make the right choices before buying, we’ve prepared a handy guide on how to measure and fit a new rug.

Step 1: Consider the usage of the rug

Before making the final decision about which rug is right for your home, it’s a good idea to consider where and how it will be used. For instance, differing levels of foot-traffic will affect the longevity of a rug.

We’d recommend that you pick a heavyweight, thick (or dense) pile rug for areas like hallways, stairs, and landings because these see the most wear and tear over time.

Step 2: Measuring a room

Very few rooms are purely quadrilateral, so measuring correctly is an important step when picking out a rug.

When measuring your room for an area rug, where you’re covering as much space as possible, take into account any alcoves or areas where the walls angle off. However, do make sure you disregard these until you’re left with a quadrilateral dimension (i.e. four walls).

Once you have the width and length of your room in metres, you can multiply the two together to get your room size in square metres. From here, you’re in a great position to decide exactly how large you’d like your new rug to be.

Specifically measuring for each room

Living room: Of course, living rooms come in all shapes and sizes so matching a rug with its floorplan can be tough. Although, as a rule of thumb, there are three different types of living room: large, medium and small.

For a large living space, you will have furniture floating in the middle of the room, so the ideal rug will encompass all the features without feeling too cramped.

In a medium-sized living room, you’ll find the furniture is pressed against the wall, so a rug that covers half of each piece of furniture will make it feel larger.

Finally, for small living spaces, centring the rug so none of it falls under any furniture will draw emphasis to the centre of the room. In this case, a coffee table is likely to be highlighted.

Dining room: In a dining room, it’s quite clear where people’s eyes are drawn to – the dining room table. This, in a nutshell, is exactly the function of a dining room rug; it creates a border around the table to highlight the centrepiece and the chairs around it. Remember to allow for 24” of room behind the chairs to avoid any accidents.

Bedroom: Like the dining room table, the bed is the centrepiece of its respective room. More often than not a rug will create a frame around a bed which highlights its colour and features. Usually, a 36” border around the bed is the ideal landing area for feet while the area at the top of the bed can be extended depending on the dimensions of the room.

Kitchen: This all depends on the layout of your kitchen. If it’s a thin and narrow shape, then a rug acting as a centre island will extend the kitchen visually and take the brunt of the footfall. If you have a large kitchen with a lot of space underfoot, a rug just in front of the sink will absorb a lot of the foot traffic.

Hallway/Stairway: Usually kept one side with furniture the other, a hallway rug takes a great deal of the upstairs foot traffic and can be a stylish addition to a home. Dimensions of 3x8x12” is a standard size for a majority of hallway rugs. A stairway rug partially fitted to a wooden staircase can also add real style and is a more obvious fit.

Different types of rugs actually have specific dimensions

Rugs come in all shapes and sizes, but did you know each category of rug has its own dimensions? This is important to consider when matching a rug with a specific room.

Area Rugs: The largest of all the rugs, ranging from 4.5x7 to 5x7 feet. Area rugs are mainly used to fill a living room without being a carpet.

Runners (Corridor rugs): Measuring 3 feet wide and between 7-20 feet in length, the runner rugs are utilised on staircases and in hallways.

Mat: Finally, we have the mat measuring in at 2x3 feet, which is often used for small spaces across a house and invariably in front of the sink.

Remember to consider size of underlay

One step that many new rug buyers forget about is rug underlay. This is handy for multiple reasons, including the prevention of slippage for the rug, and added thermal insulation. It’s really easy to size up underlay so that it can’t be seen, and it’s especially useful if your rug is going to be placed onto smooth floor coverings such as laminate and wood.

In this case, we’d always recommend that addition of rug underlay if only to prevent the rug from slipping – which could potentially pose a risk of injury.