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How to Layer Rugs: Design Tips for Styling Layered Rugs

Layered rugs. You’ve seen the look on all your favorite design blogs. You’ve pinned images and dreamed of having this casual but considered look in your own home. But you might be feeling stumped as to how to actually pull off this look.

Rug layering is a design trick that makes your space seem extra thoughtful, well-designed, and curated. It gives your space a more nuanced look and adds a dose of coziness. And here’s the good news: there’s actually no one right way to approach layered rugs. But there are a few best practices!

Want to know how to ace the layered rug look in your space? Keep reading for our best tips and ideas for how to layer rugs in rooms throughout your home!

how to layer rugsWoven + Patterned Rugs

Use your layered rugs to anchor a cozy, conversational seating area in your living room, with your coffee table centered over two layered rugs. An old-world patterned rug layered over a chunky wool and jute rug adds color and texture to the space.

Why It Works

This layering, similar to the bedroom example above, adds depth and a pop of color to your decor scheme. Plus, it helps to expand the seating area perimeter so there’s a little more breathing room between furniture while still having enough floor coverage.

Where To Use It

This is a great approach for large living rooms. It allows all of your sitting area furniture to be on the rug without a singular large rug. Check out our living room rug size guide if you want extra help with sizing.

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Jute + Traditional Rugs

Here’s a no-fail way to think about layering rugs. Use a large jute rug as your base, then layer a bold-print or traditional patterned rug on top for some color and pattern. This is a perfect approach for if you have a smaller vintage or statement rug that wouldn’t be the right size on its own. But layer it over a larger rug and it works with the space!

Why It Works

This layering technique adds dimension and stylistic layers to your space—and just gives it a polished look! We love the combo of the different textures that help bring a space to life. Wondering why jute rugs make such a great base rug? Read our guide to natural fiber rugs to learn more.

Where To Use It

This is great for bedrooms, or anywhere that you want extra cushion underfoot. We love that the jute rug gives ample floor covering and the top rug pulls in colors from the rest of the room while adding a softer layer to the floor.

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how to layer rugsJute + Shag Rugs

To get a lot of floor coverage, start with a jute rug as your base, then layer a shag rug on top for an extra-cozy layer. This is a great way to utilize a rug that’s too small on its own but that you really want to showcase!

Why It Works

The jute rug covers a lot of the floor. (This one is 9.5×13.5!) Meanwhile, the shag rug adds color and a fun pattern to the space while also creating a super soft surface.

Where To Use It

This is great for kids spaces, so you kids can comfortably play on the floor. (Bonus: add a sheepskin in a reading nook for an extra cozy third layer!) But really, the idea works anywhere you want extra cushion—from a living room to a bedroom or office. Pro tip: Indoor-outdoor rugs are also great kid and pet-friendly rug options!

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how to layer rugs

Flat-Weave + Hide Rugs

Love the idea of a bold accent but prefer a neutral color palette? Pop a hide rug (real or faux) over a flatweave area rug to accentuate part of your space. Want an extra splash of boldness? Opt for a hide rug with flecks of gold, like the one pictured above.

Why It Works

A hide rug adds a hint of pattern and texture without overwhelming the space. And its organic shape adds visual interest when layered over the simple flat-weave rug.

Where To Use It

Use this layering technique in small or awkward spaces. Here, we used it in a bedroom, in the narrower space between the bed and the wall, accentuating the space that is there.

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how to layer rugs

Hide + Circular Rugs

Here’s a totally different take on layering rugs. In this space, we’ve paired two irregular-shaped rugs, just slightly overlapping, for a funky and unique look.

Why It Works

Since both of these rugs lack hard edges and corners, you can easily move them around and layer them differently for a versatile and varied layout and arrangement. The organic shapes means there are no hard and fast rules about where to place them.

Where To Use It

This is a great set-up for small or oddly shaped rooms, where a large rectangular area rug might not fit or would make the space feel cramped.

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how to layer rugsJute + Round Rugs

To create a distinct zone within a larger space, layer a round accent rug on top of a large jute, rattan, or even sisal rug. The jute rug will give you the floor coverage you need, while the round rug will help section off part of the room into its own space.

Why It Works

Not only is this a fun way to layer rugs and mix shapes, colors, and patterns—but it also helps you accentuate a special area of a room, whether that’s a full reading corner or just a way to highlight a unique chair.

Where To Use It

In the room above, we used this layering technique to create a reading and sitting area within a home office. But the same idea would work in a bedroom, or even for a second seating area within a large living room!

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how to layer rugsBase + Small Accent Rugs

Do you have a small accent rug that you love, but you also like the idea of a large area rug in your bedroom for more coverage and comfort underfoot? Go for both! By layering a special “landing” rug over a base rug with a pattern, you’ll create a cozy and plush spot when stepping out of bed. And don’t be afraid of pattern on pattern—in fact, you can choose two rugs that have similar patterns and hues or are totally contrasting.

Why It Works

This layering technique adds an extra pop of color to your space and accentuates the bedside area. The layered patterns add visual interest to an otherwise simple bedroom.

Where To Use It

This approach is best used in a bedroom, on one or both sides of your bed. Not sure what size of area rug to get for the base? Check out our bedroom rug size guide.

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how to layer rugsRunners + Accent Rugs

Layer long and narrow rugs together to add pattern and softness underfoot. These can be runners, with their ends overlapping, or you can mix small rugs with runners, or even smaller area rugs depending on the space. Layer them at angles in a way that looks casual but considered.

Why It Works

Layering rugs of different sizes and patterns gives an elegant and eclectic look to any space. Just make sure the rugs overlap some to lessen the tripping hazard!

Where To Use It

This is a perfect approach for a long and narrow space, like a hallway, galley kitchen, or even a long and narrow living room.

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The Ultimate Living Room Rug Guide: How to Find the Right Rug Size for Your Living Space

A living room is one of the most important rooms in your house. It’s where you drink your morning coffee, relax after work, gather for movie and game nights. As one of the most used rooms in your home, it’s important to make it cozy and comfortable. And a big part of that is grounding the space with a rug!

But it can be difficult to know the right rug size for your space. There are so many variables and living room design ideas to consider—your room shape and size, the furniture in your space, and the overall layout. And then there are the inevitable questions of, “Why are rugs so expensive?” and “Should I skimp or splurge on a rug?”

But today, we’re hoping to simplify the process. Let this blog post be your guide to walk you through living rooms with rugs—from the various living room rug size options to ways to design them within your space—so you can determine which is right for you.

What Rug Sizes To Consider

First, let’s talk about rug sizes. In most cases, you’ll be choosing between a 6×9, 8×10, or 9×12 area rug. You might think that the size you choose depends on the size of your living room—but as we’ll show you below, you can actually opt for any of these sizes in the same room. But each size will have a different look and feel.

A 6×9 area rug, being the smallest area rug size you’d want to go for, will typically sit in front of your furniture—or, at most, you’ll just have two legs of an accent chair sitting on top of the rug. Since you want it covering as much visible floor space as possible, you won’t want this sitting under the front legs of your sofa. This is a great option if you have a special vintage or heirloom rug that you want to showcase and not partially cover up with furniture. You could also layer a 6×9 rug over a larger flat-weave rug if you want more surface area covered. (Here’s our guide to natural fiber rugs if you want to explore that option.)

An 8×10 area rug is the most common rug size used in a home. It gives you the dimensions you need to create some overlap with your sofa and other furniture, which gives a cozier vibe than a 6×9 rug. And, since it’s the most common size throughout homes, it also offers the versatility of being able to swap rugs to different spaces throughout your home when and if you want to switch up your look!

Since a 9×12 is one of the largest rug sizes, it’s also going to be the most expensive choice.

However, if you have the square footage and budget for it, this is a great option for covering and protecting large floor areas. It also gives you lots of room for lounging or for your kids to play on the rug! (Kids love the coziness of a plush rug.)

Ready to see these different rug sizes come to life in a living room layout so you can find the right rug size for your living room? We designed one room three ways, and showed how each of these three different rug sizes would work in each design. (Hopefully it will also be a spark of inspiration for how to decorate a living room beyond just your choice of rug.) Keep reading to see how you can use each of these rug sizes with a regular sofa, a sofa with a chaise, and an L-shaped sectional!

The Living Room With a Sofa

A traditional sofa with one or two accent chairs is probably the most common living room layout out there. But, depending on the rug size, style, and overall layout you go for, this look is anything but common. We opted to skip a coffee table in this look and used a pouf instead, which gives added flexibility to this arrangement.

6×9 Rug With a Sofa + Chair

With a 6×9 area rug, the rug will sit partially under the accent chair, but it won’t sit under the sofa at all. Give the rug about an inch of space between the sofa. The pouf, however, since it can be a makeshift coffee table, should be fully on the rug. This layout is great for small spaces, as it allows you to maximize the square footage of a small rug and lets you create an open space between the sofa and chairs, which is especially great if you have kids!

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8×10 Rug With a Sofa + Chair

Using an 8×10 area rug with a sofa and accent chair means the rug will go about six inches under the sofa and three-fourths of the way under the chair. The sides of the rug will also go beyond the sofa; you can either center the sofa on the rug or let one side be longer for an asymmetrical look! With this size and layout, your seating arrangement can be less compact, giving you space to spread out on the rug and allowing for more walkthrough space.

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9×12 Rug With a Sofa + Chair

Want maximum floor playing and lounging space? Opt for a 9×12 area rug. With this layout, the rug sits halfway under the sofa and the chair is almost fully on the rug. You can also place the side table and lamp either partially or fully on the rug. This rug size also means you can easily add extra chairs, another pouf, or an actual coffee table without sacrificing space for spreading out, as you have a lot of ground coverage to work with.

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The Living Room With a Sofa Chaise

Opting for a sofa with a chaise gives you extra room for lounging compared to a regular sofa. We paired it with an accent chair for conversational seating, along with a round coffee table that can tuck within the angle of the chaise.

6×9 Rug With a Chaise Sofa + Accent Chair

Using a 6×9 area rug with a chaise sofa and accent chair is a set-up that’s geared toward conversation. In this arrangement, the rug sits under the front legs of the accent chair and the feet of the chaise—but not under the main part of the sofa. This is a great option if you want your furniture to sit closer together, creating a more intimate seating arrangement. It’s also good for small spaces where you don’t have much room to work with past the furniture, since the whole arrangement is more compact.

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8×10 Rug With a Chaise Sofa + Accent Chair

When pairing an 8×10 area rug with a chaise sofa and accent chair, have the rug go about six inches under the sectional and about three-fourths of the way under the accent chair. And make sure the rug is centered under the sofa, so it goes evenly beyond each side of the sofa! This is great for those who desire a conversational seating arrangement but want the option to spread out a bit more.

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9×12 Rug With a Chaise Sofa + Accent Chair

With a 9×12 area rug, the rug will sit almost fully under the accent chair and six to twelve inches under the sofa. The side table and lamp can also be placed on the rug. This is a flexible layout, as it gives you the option of adding more chairs or a pouf for an extra seating option, and you could also upgrade the size of your coffee table with this layout.

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The Living Room With a Sectional

In this layout, we’re using an L-shaped sectional as the main piece of furniture in the living room. We’ve paired it with a round coffee table that tucks within the L-shape, and also used two leather poufs as additional seating options.

6×9 Rug With a Sectional

Since a 6×9 area rug is on the smaller side, the rug doesn’t sit under the sectional sofa in this layout—but it does cover the floor where your feet hit the ground while sitting on the sofa. For this arrangement, you’ll place the short side of the rug within the corner of the sectional, and let the long side stretch out toward the wall. You can then balance out the length with a pair of poufs at the end of the rug, or you could even add armchairs off the rug, perpendicular to the sofa and poufs, if you want extra seating options. The idea here is that none of the seating touches the rug, which lets you see—and showcase—all of the rug.

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8×10 Rug With a Sectional

In this arrangement, the front of the sectional just barely sits over the rug—about six inches of overlap. This is great for a more grounded and cozy look, since there’s overlap on two corners of the rug. This size also gives you some lounging space on the rug, compared to the more compact arrangement in the previous design!

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9×12 Rug With a Sectional

With a 9×12 area rug and the L-shaped sectional, the rug sits one half to three-fourths of the way under the sectional. This gives you lots of great space for lounging on the rug. (Kids love this!) And with the extra coverage, you can easily add extra chairs or poufs, or a larger coffee table since you have extra ground coverage.

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Still feeling stuck? Try on rugs in a 3D version of your room with Modsy’s design services! We’ll help you figure out what rug size and layout is best for you. Plus, we’ll help you find the right rug material, pattern, and color for your space as well! We’ll work with you to find the right fit so that when you finally pull the trigger on buying one, you can feel confident of how it will look in your home!

Want to find the perfect rug for your living room?

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Style Ideas: 3 Ways to Layer Cowhide Rugs

Love it, hate it, or not sure what to make of it – the cowhide rug trend has proven itself to be enduringly popular.

We are among the lovers. We love it on its own, but we really love is a cowhide rug layered on top of other rugs. And in this warm, rich cream color, what’s not to love?

Here are 3 ways to layer cowhide rugs in your home.

 

1. Escape From the Norm

Let’s face it, design options in a typical bedroom can be pretty limited. Rectangles abound –  room shape, bed, rug, dresser, bench – everything except maybe the bedside lamp! But place a curvy cowhide rug so it spills toward one corner, and all those straight lines are instantly relaxed, just like a bedroom should be.

layer Cowhide rugslayer Cowhide rugs

2. Mess With Perfection

Add a touch of devil-may-care to a space by stepping outside the restraints of symmetry. The fluid and organic shape of a cowhide rug, added to an otherwise precisely balanced space, says “Hey, loosen up.”

Layering with Cowhide Rugs: 3 Ways

3. Extend Your Reach

Take advantage of every square foot of your space by using a cowhide rug to reach areas where traditionally shaped rugs don’t work. In this living room, this layering trick creates a connection between the two seating areas making the space feel larger and less choppy.
Layering with Cowhide Rugs: 3 Ways layer Cowhide rugs


Holy Cow! More Cowhide Rugs!

nuLOOM-Hand-picked-Brazilian-White-Devour-Cowhide-Rug-5-x-7-6a812418-f76c-4625-95a3-21dca98cd319_600Nuloom Cowhide Rug
Overstock, $356.00
layer cowhide rugs


Cowhide Espresso Rug
Crate & Barrel, $299


more cowhideWhite Cowhide Rug
Cowhide Imports, $650