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Choose The Right Rug Size For Any Room in Your Home

Choosing the right rug size can be very confusing. It’s also something that you don’t want to get wrong because that can be an expensive mistake. Today I will take you through every room in your home and show you how to choose the right rug size for you.

Grab a tape measure and let’s get going!

The first big rule is don’t have a rug so large that it goes from wall to wall. You might as well install permanent carpeting then. You need to leave at least 6 inches around the perimeter of the room, I prefer to leave at least 12 inches.

Another thing to keep in mind is that an 8X10 rug isn’t usually exactly 8X10. Sometimes it’s 7’9″ by 9’10” or something like that. So when placing an order online or buying in-store make sure you get the exact dimensions of the area rug you want to buy to be certain it will fit your space.

Table of Contents

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The Right Rug Size for a Living Room

There are two rules of thumb for a living room.

First, you can choose a rug that goes under all upholstered furniture. Keep in mind that you don’t want a wall-to-wall carpet look. Leave about a foot between the rug and the wall.

Second, choose a rug that goes under just the front legs of the furniture. Let me show you a picture of what I mean.

A drawing of a living room and where you should place a rug.
This is perfect. There is room between the rug and wall, and the rug sits under the front legs of the upholstered furniture.

The rug doesn’t have to go under the tv stand. It can, but it doesn’t have to.

Do not have a rug that doesn’t touch any of the furniture in the living room except the coffee table. This is a big no-no. Let me show you a picture of what I mean.

A drawing of a living room and a rug that is too small for the room.
This is a no-no. The rug needs to touch the legs of the upholstered furniture.

Take your tape measure and measure the space under your upholstered furniture to the other furniture in your room.

The Right Rug Size for a Dining Room

The big rule for the dining room is to make sure the rug goes under the table and the dining chairs, even when the chair is pulled out from the table.

If you pull the chair out and the legs fall off the rug, it’s not big enough.

A drawing of a dining room with a round table and chairs with an appropriate sized rug.
A drawing of a rectangular table and chairs with an appropriate sized rug.

These images below show what not to do.

A drawing of a round table and chairs with a rug that is too small.
A drawing of a rectangular table with a too small rug.

You need to measure the room, how big your table is, and how large a rug you need when chairs are pulled out.

The Right Rug Size for a Bedroom

Bedrooms are a little more forgiving. Typically the rule of thumb is to put a large rug under the bed so when you step out of bed you are on the rug and when you walk around the bottom of the bed you will be on the rug.

This image shows what I mean.

A drawing of a bedroom with an appropriate rug.

The rug doesn’t have to go under the nightstands or the dresser.

Another option is to put runners (long narrow rugs) on either side of the bed. That way when you step out of bed you are on a rug, no one likes to get out of bed and step on a cold floor first thing in the morning!

Kitchens and Bathrooms

You can put small area rugs right in front of work areas. For example, I have a small rug in front of my kitchen sink and refrigerator.

I also typically put a rug in front of the bathroom sink. In my last house, I had a long counter and I put a runner in front of the bathroom vanity to cover both mine and my husband’s sink.

Another option is to put a rug in the middle of the room if you have the floor space. If you have an island this might not work but if you have a U-shaped kitchen it would. Same thing in a bathroom, assuming you have the floor space. In this case, you can choose a round or square rug or a small rectangle.

This is an example of a rug in the middle of the bathroom. This is from the popular show Fixer Upper.

Other posts on Rugs:

The Best Place to Buy Rugs Online

Sisal And Jute Rugs: The Difference and if they are Right for You

A pin for Pinterest on how to choose the right rug size.

I hope you feel more comfortable choosing a rug for any room in your home. Just remember that if you love it, then no rules matter. All that matters is your opinion!

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