Determining Your Ideal Size

Knowing your ideal size is one of the most important pieces of information you will have when starting to look for the perfect oriental rug.  Most oriental rug dealers have their stock organized by size.  Simply browsing a dealer’s stock can give you some great ideas as far as possible colors and designs you may like, but when you are ready to buy, you must know your size needs accurately.

A reputable dealer will ask you a series of questions that can help you determine the best size rug for you.  Most of the questions will be based upon the type of room that you are decorating.  The most common rooms we find rugs in are living rooms, dining rooms, and bedrooms.  Check out the information below for some great tips on determining the perfect size for each respective room.

LIVING ROOM

A living room is one of the most common places to find an oriental rug.  There are many possibilities for how rugs will be placed, but the majority of settings involve a single rug anchoring a setting of furniture.  The rug will essentially define the seating area.  If selected and placed properly, the setting will feel complete and balanced.  If designed incorrectly (such as selecting a rug that is too small) the setting will feel cluttered and imbalanced. (We often hear that this causes furniture to look less like a seating area, and more like a group of “stuff.”)

There are three ways you can place the rug in the room:  Furniture completely off the rug, upholstered pieces with front legs on the rug, or furniture all on the rug.  The choice here is determined by the size of your room and the amount of furniture placed in it.

You want to avoid the rug going underneath any furniture that is placed on a wall such as an entertainment center or sideboard.  These pieces are usually very heavy and adjusting and cleaning a rug underneath is very difficult.  If these heavy pieces are not completely balanced, it can also cause problems such as sticking doors or drawers. You also want to avoid the rug coming to close to the walls.  Try to keep at least 4” to 6” on floor showing in order to keep the room balanced and to avoid the rug overwhelming the room.  Never allow a rug to cover any air vents or returns.

If you have a simple sofa setting such as a sofa and maybe 1-2 chairs and ottomans, you can often leave the furniture off of the rug or simply place the front legs on the rug.  This allows you to select a slightly smaller rug while still getting the feeling of a much larger piece.  This will also keep the setting balanced.  For these types of settings an 8x10 rug or a 9x12 size rug will usually work well.

Placing the front legs of a sofa or accompanying chairs will define the setting as a seating area without overwhelming the room.  The rug will often look larger when surrounded by furniture, an optical illusion that can save you on unnecessary square footage costs.

For larger settings, such as multiple sofas, or sofas with multiple chairs and ottomans, the setting may often require a large size rug such as a 10x14 or 12x15 size rug.  If you would like to place the entire furniture setting all the way on the rug, the setting will automatically require a larger size piece, such as a 10x14, 12x15, or 12x18.

DINING ROOM

Dining rooms are the second most common place to find an oriental rug.  Again, there are multiple ways to place the rug, but for the most part you simply need to find a compromise between two factors- room size and table size.

To determine the rug size needed for your dining table, first begin by pulling all of the chairs out from the table as if you were preparing to sit down.  Now, measure around this perimeter leaving 2-4 inches of spare area.  This ensures that the chair legs will always be on the rug and will not scratch your floors or catch on the rug edges.  Be sure that you also take into account any extra chairs or table leave when deciding on your ideal size.

If you do not use the dining table often, many people will use a slightly smaller rug that allows all chair legs to remain on the rug when pushed up to the table even though they may come off of the rug when pulled back to sit down.

For a rectangular dining table with 4 chairs, and 8x10 rug is commonly used.  For a rectangular table with 6 chairs, a 9x12 or 10x14 is commonly used.  Rectangular tables with 8 or more chairs require 10x14s or larger.  These sizes allow for useable function of the table.

Round tables follow the same measurement directions.  The standard size round rugs come in 6ft, 8ft, 10ft, and sometimes 12ft diameters.  Plan on your rug being 4-6 feet larger in diameter than the top of your table.

When accommodating for your dining room, remember to avoid any floor registers, and try to avoid placing the rug underneath any other furniture pieces such as sideboards or china cabinets.  This will keep the setting balanced and will also keep china cabinets, servers and other heavy pieces of furniture level.

BEDROOM

The beauty of an oriental rug in a bedroom is not limited to visual aesthetics.  You truly understand how beautiful they can be when your feet hit a plush, warm rug first thing in the morning instead of a cold, hard floor.  There are a few different ways that you can arrange your room to accommodate your needs and wants for your oriental rugs.

The first and most common arrangement involves placing your oriental rug completely under the bed, leaving a border of rug on three sides of the bed.  We recommend that you leave the rug in front of any nightstands.  This will not only keep the rug off of the wall, but will also keep you from paying for extra square footage that is not functional.  With this arrangement the length of the rug is usually run parallel to the headboard and footboard of the bed.  For a queen size bed and 8x10 or 9x12 is often used.  For a king size bed, 9x12s or 10x14s are the most commonly used sizes.  Keep in mind that the size of the rug must be a balance between the bed and the room size.  Again, you want to try to avoid placing any furniture that would normally be on a wall such as a dresser or armoire on the rug.

If your room calls for placing the rug with the width running parallel to the headboard and footboard, you will need a larger rug to gain enough covered area on the sides of you bed.  For a standard king or queen bed, a 10x14 rug will be the minimum size necessary.

To create a more modern or “magazine” look in your bedroom, try placing the rug on an angle facing the main entrance.  This arrangement will create “motion” in the room, giving a new look to your existing style.  The advantage of this arrangement is that a smaller rug can be used to achieve the desired look.  The main disadvantage is that much of your floor will not actually be covered by the rug.  For standard king and queen size beds an 8x10 rug is the most commonly used size for this style of setting.

If you would like to place the rug only at the foot of the bed, you want to try to find a rug size that is at least the width of the footboard and preferably slightly longer.  For this arrangement a 6x9 will often fill the need, though 8x10s are often used to help fill the space between the foot of the bed and any walls or furniture.

Another common way that people will use oriental rugs in a bedroom does not require placing any square footage under the bed at all.  This method involves placing three rugs in the room at the side and the foot of the bed.  The rugs on the side are generally smaller pieces such as 4x6’s or 3x5’s.  The rug at the foot of the bed can be anywhere from a 4x6 to an 8x10 depending upon how much space in the room needs to be covered.

If you have any other rooms that you would like help placing oriental rugs in, please do not hesitate to contact us.  Our on-staff designers will be glad to help you or answer any questions you may have.