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  • Writer's pictureFloors Depot Team

Rugs For The Living Room: Which Type Is Right For You?

Rugs For The Living Room

The right choice of an area rug can be the perfect accent for a room, bringing in needed personality and colour without hiding the flooring (great for those with a hardwood floor). Compared with wall-to-wall carpeting, area rugs are a more versatile choice; they can be moved and mixed and matched with ease. Because they’re easier to move, area rugs are also easier and cheaper to clean than wall-to-wall carpeting. Lastly, an area rug can travel with you as you move homes, and with the right care can be kept safely in storage until you need it.

However, choosing the right area rug for a room can be very challenging! With wall-to-wall carpeting, you simply need to pick the material and style, but area rugs also demand you pick types of carpets as well. Because they’re smaller, area rugs also come in wilder designs than wall-to-wall carpeting – this makes for a lot of variety!

To help you make this important choice, we’re going to run down the most common sizes and shapes of area rugs.

Styles And Sizes Of Area Rugs

One of the simplest ways to classify styles and sizes of area rugs is by style and size. Here are some of the most common shapes for area rugs:

  • Rectangular: The most common rug shape, the rectangular rug is traditional and still very popular today. Certain specific rectangular shapes are very common and tend to go by their own names.

  • Square: Square rugs are a very popular shape and a great choice for area rugs for living or dining rooms.

  • Runner: Another perennial favourite, a runner is a carpet shape that is much longer than it is wide. Runners are a common choice for hallways.

  • Round: Round and oval rugs are a great way to make a statement or highlight a round table or room.

Of course, this is just a start – there are rugs available in almost any shape you can imagine!

With the standard shapes come standard sizes. For a living room, standard area rug sizes are:

  • 6 x 9 feet

  • 8 x 10 feet

  • 9 x 12 feet

  • 10 x 14 feet

These are for rectangular rugs – popular square rugs for the same room might be 6 x 6, 8 x 8 and 10 x 10 feet, and the diameter of a round rug might be between 6 and 9 feet.

How To Choose A Rug For A Living Room?

While it can often feel like there is an overwhelming variety of rugs to choose from, for most rooms in most homes it’s easy to narrow it down. There are a few basic principles you can keep in mind – here are some tips for choosing a rug for a living room.

For a living room, most will opt for a rectangular rug with the same rough shape as the room – the longer side running parallel to the longer wall. A common rule of thumb is to pick a rug that is two feet shorter than the shortest wall in your space. This means that for a 10 x 12 foot living room, you might want a 6 x 8 foot rug.

Next, you’ll need to consider how the space in your living room is actually being used. For example, you might have a sofa, a chair, and a coffee table in your space – most advice would be for your rug to fit securely under the entirety of the furniture. Alternatively, you might pick a smaller rug that is larger than the coffee table but small enough not to touch the sofas and chairs.

Finally, you’ll need to consider how your space will be used. Is your living room high traffic or low traffic? Do you rearrange the furniture regularly? Do you have pets? These will help you determine the material, thickness, and other attributes of the rug you’ll finally pick.

Best Ways To Place A Rug In Living Room

Once you’ve picked out a rug, we can consider the best way to put your rug in your living room. Depending on your living room area rug size, you’ll have a few options.

The first thing to consider is centring the space. This doesn’t necessarily mean that your rug should be dead center in the room, but that you should pay attention to the geometry of your space to place your rug appropriately around the “center” of the space as you actually use it. For example, in a large living room with abundant open space at one end and a sofa and seating at the other, a rug should be placed with the seating area as the “center” of the space.

Next, you need to consider how your rug interacts with furniture. The main rule here is consistency. The best case is to have a rug large enough to fit under all the legs of all the furniture in your space. If this can’t be done, you should at least be confident – for example, fitting all of the front legs of the furniture on the rug, with the back legs off.


Area rugs can be a fantastic, versatile choice for adding carpet to your home. A properly placed rug can add a bright touch of colour and design. By properly selecting the size and shape of your carpet to offset the shape of your room and furniture arrangement, you can easily select a great carpet for your living room or any other space.

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