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The art of layering rugs

The art of layering rugs

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Rugs are an integral part of any room. They add comfort, warmth, and style to every space, making it a great way to warm up a cold room. Whatever style of rug you prefer, from minimal jute rugs to boldly patterned rugs, they’re central to completing the look of a room. Normally we visualise this as a single large rug on the floor, in place of a carpet, that manages to tie all the details and colours of our room together. But have you ever contemplated layering multiple rugs to create a brand-new look?

We’ve got a host of tips that’ll help you become a legend in the art of layering rugs – from colour combos to the different layering techniques you can use in different rooms. Here are some of the ways you can become an expert in rug layering, which is a nod towards Scandi interior design.

How to layer rugs

Before we jump into the fun ideas we want to share, we need to start with some of the basic rules of rug layering to ensure your look is coordinated and stylish and won’t cause any problems like creating a trip hazard.

  1. Always start with your flattest rug – this should be the rug that is either your neutral base colour or the rug that is the flattest. Choose the one with the least texture, so it won’t cause too much instability when you’re layering (if you're unsure, have a read of our guide on how to stop your rug from slipping). Jute and sisal rugs are a great pick here.
  2. Introduce different textures that’ll complement each other – try creating a coordinated look with textures and patterns. For instance, if you have a patterned rug with lines, opt for a plain textured rug with lines, and add another striped rug with opposing lines. This keeps the theme unified and makes the different layers feel related.
  3. Keeping the pile heights similar. That’s a good way to ensure you don’t have any unexpected lumps and bumps in your rugs that could become a trip hazard.
  4. Alternatively, play with texture even more by adding a sheepskin or velvet rug on top of your other rugs. This adds a nice fluffy top layer, ideal in bedrooms for cold winter mornings!
  5. Layering doesn’t have to mean the boho-chic example of rugs at random angles scattered around a room. It can be very minimalist and chic to layer a smaller, thicker rug directly in the middle of a neutral base rug to create new shapes in the room and draw attention to a specific feature.

Layering rugs in living rooms

Living rooms are the place in your home where you want to feel relaxed and settled after a long day, so getting the vibe cosy and intimate is important. A great way to do this is by layering rugs to create an informal feel. Use different textures that are soft to the touch and in a colour palette that reflects your personality.

Living rooms are a great place to experiment with different sensations. Combine a soft tufted rug with a thick wool rug to create a combination of textures that feels enjoyable and relaxing. Layering rugs also works best in a room with little clutter – if your living room has a lot of furniture, then you might be better off working with a simple large area rug instead. Rugs are a great way to add detail and additional texture to a room, but unless you’re aiming for maximalism, layering is best kept to minimal spaces.

If you really want to lean into the bohemian decor vibe though, creating a patchwork of different rugs is a great alternative to carpeting your flooring, and you can create a unique style by overlapping the edges and filling the entire floor.

Layering rugs in kitchens

Practicality is key in a family kitchen – after all, so many messy life activities happen in the kitchen, that having flooring that is stain and water-resistant is pretty crucial! However, you don’t have to compromise on the style that you want with your layered rugs.

For this reason, you’ll want to look for rugs that are made from synthetic materials like polypropylene. These materials are extremely durable and can stand up to the toughest things life can throw at them.

There are a lot of synthetic rugs that can look a lot like natural rugs – you can find stain-resistant alternatives to jute rugs and machine washable decorative runners that are great for galley kitchens. Layering these rugs can create a natural and warming feel in a kitchen.

Layering rugs in bedrooms

Creating a decadent space where you’re comfortable sleeping, changing, starting, and ending your day is really important for your sanity! Making your bedroom a haven is about more than just the decorations; you need to bring in all the senses. Think about your favourite colour or pattern, then the touch of your favourite texture. Using soft rugs is a great way to make yourself feel physically relaxed and pampered.

Sheepskin rugs are a great choice for bedrooms, thanks to their relaxed appearance and velvety softness, and are a nod to the recent 1970s interior design resurgance. They look very stylish layered on top of other rugs in neutral tones. Layering your rugs underneath the bed can also make a room look bigger and you can also choose a spot you want to highlight in the room, such as a vanity or dressing area with a rug in a pop of colour or texture.

Rug layering ideas

Here are some quickfire rug layering ideas you can experiment with in your home:

  • Mix up your patterns – don’t be afraid to combine a zebra print with a black and white striped rug! Remember that this is done well when you use neutral colours like beiges, blacks, and whites.
  • Combine different shapes – placing a circle rug underneath a coffee table on top of a larger area rug can help to make more of a statement and show off a unique area of the room.
  • Go bold with all your rugs – a really exciting way of layering rugs is to have a combination of several different patterns or colours that all complement each other e.g., a Turkish rug and a black and white striped rug can dramatically offset each other.
  • Have fun – try experimenting with lots of different rugs and layouts until you find the style that you love the most.

Alternatively, if you're thinking of another way you can accessorise your rugs, why not read our guide on how to hang a rug on the wall?

If you’d like to have a custom-made rug from any of the carpets you’ve seen and loved at Tapi, why not pop down to your local Tapi store and speak to one of our knowledgeable Floorologists about our carpet whipping service? Alternatively, check out our Ideas Hub for even more styling advice and inspiration you can use to style your home perfectly.

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Published: 19-08-2022