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Decorating & Furniture/how to decorate with area rugs for open floor plan


We have a home that as you enter there is a large foyer - to the right the dining room and to the left the living room - all hardwood floors.  How to I choose my area rugs for these rooms as they are totally open to each other - open floor plan.  Also, what texture should these rugs be - this is a traditional home.  Thank you

2 rugs, 1 room
2 rugs, 1 room  
Hi Anna,

Since all your rooms are open to each other, you will have to be careful with what you choose.  

I'm going to suggest at least three rugs - one for each space.  Your rugs don't need to be exactly the same, but there needs to be a uniting factor to them; be it colour or pattern.

You might want to try matching rugs in the living room and dining room and a different rug (maybe something quite eye-catching) in the foyer to act as a focal point.  If you can find rugs with lots of different colours, perhaps on a cream or neutral background, it will give you a good base to pull other colours from to create a palette for your LR and DR.

Make sure the rug in the DR is large enough that all your dining room furniture is on it - and that the chairs are still on it when pushed back.  You can use a room sized rug too, leaving 8-10" or hardwood showing around the perimeter of the room.

In the living room, your seating arrangement should all be at least touching the rug, but best is to be fully on it.  A rug with a medallion in the center looks great under a glass coffee table.  You can also use a room sized rug here, or several rugs if you have more than one furniture grouping.

Wool rugs are a great choice, but are pricey, especially if you need more than one.  Oriental rugs will work too, in a traditional home, and come in a variety of patterns and colours.  Buy the best you can afford so it will stand the test of time.  If you like to change your decor often, try HomeSense, Home Depot or other big box stores - they can have beautiful rugs at very reasonable prices.

Another idea is to go to a carpet store and see what remnants they have.  A simple berber in a neutral colour will work with pretty much any style of furniture or decor.  Have the remnant bound with a contrasting band of colour and you've got an inexpensive, high-quality, "custom" rug.

Hope that helps!  Good luck!


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Sarah Kidder


Ask me anything! I'm a formally trained decorator, am passionate about decorating and design and am pretty well rounded in all areas.


I'm a Certified Interior Decorator with a diploma in Interior Decorating from Algonquin College in Ottawa, Ontario. I'm a member in good standing of the Canadian Decorator's Association (CDECA). I've been active in the design industry for about 7 years. I've been working with private clients for the past 5 years while running my own decorating company.

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