A little known fact is that rugs are actually social creatures. They work better when they’re allowed to mix, match, and mingle with runners or accent rugs, adding a variety of tones, textures, and depth to your space. In the world of interior design, this is called rug layering. If you’re a little unsure about how to find the perfect partner for your rug, we’ve put together our best tips on how to layer rugs.
But first… why?
Why layer rugs? Good question. Rug layering is a smart design choice for rooms in your house that are big on space, but short on furniture. Beyond adding an extra degree of coziness, rug layering can boost the visual interest in any space. It’s also an original choice in an age of wall-to-wall carpeting or empty laminate floors, allowing you to bring out the personality of your home.
Mix sizes and shapes
If you’re like most people, your living room probably doesn’t need three massive area rugs. Think of the largest rug as a clean base layer for your space. From there, you can layer on round, rectangular, or even a capsule rug. This will help break up the monotony of a single rug, adding visual interest to the space. At the same time, you want to make sure that each layer is visible enough to create a distinct border around the edges. If an accent rug gets lost under an area rug, it may not make the statement you’re looking for.
Create contrast with color
If your colors aren’t playing well with one another, they might need to be in separate rooms. At the same time, rug layering is about finding the harmony between different elements. Blend earth tones to accent the design of your living room or add a sophisticated touch to your bedroom with neutrals. This contrast will add depth and dimension to any space, making it feel more vibrant and inviting.
Use your patterns wisely
If you’re thinking about putting a pattern over a pattern, proceed with caution. In our (humble) opinion, some of the best rug layering involves laying down a rich, intricate pattern over a neutral base. This kind of rug layering creates a kind of blank canvas for eye-catching patterns to really pop. A lot of patterns in one space can feel like they’re competing for your attention — and no one likes that. However, if you have a vision and your heart is set on a bit of pattern play, go for it.
One texture is never enough
Rug layering is all about texture. Pair an accent rug with a different material, pile height, or weave to deliver an extra dose of drama. Jute rugs, such as the Urvi, are a perfect choice for any room of your home. A great pairing for soft wool rugs, they add a warm color and natural textures that create a cozy, warm atmosphere. Need a pop of cozy? Layer on a sheepskin accent rug.
Consider your space
Bedroom rug layering is not necessarily the same as living room rug layering. The principles are the same, but the spaces (and the way we use them) are fairly different. If you’re styling a living room, you’ll want a rug that can handle a lot of traffic, such as our Artha. A guest room, on the other hand, could be the perfect place for the incredibly soft textures of our Lalita. Check out our full rug collection to find the best rug for your specific room.
Start with what you have
Our best advice on how to layer rugs? Start with what you have. The best part about rug layering is that a piece that doesn’t work in one room can find a second chance in another. A piece that doesn’t pop might just need a supporting act to help make a statement. Let the rugs that you have inspire you to refresh your space.