How An Area Rug Can Change Your Home In A Big Way

Photo: Courtesy of Claire Esparros/Homepolish.
We're always on the lookout for the magical tricks that will make our homes look bigger or brighter, cozier or airier. Many of our clients have sacrificed space or sunlight for location, so we get a lot of questions about insider furnishing secrets that will improve upon small floor plans.

There are a million and one tactics for tricking yourself (and your guests) into thinking that your space is something more than it is. With that idea in mind, we polled our designers on their favorite area-rug tactics. From angles to layering, there are a multitude of ways to improve your room(s) with different kinds of rugs.

Click through the slideshow for suggestions.
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Photo: Courtesy of Matt Merrell/Tessa Neustadt/Homepolish.
This apartment enlists pattern in a subtle way. Though the orange-red rug is bright, it matches the chairs, works with the floor, and makes the white walls feel open and airy.

Designer: Matt Merrell.


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Photo: Courtesy of Claire Esparros/Homepolish.
Animal hides are not for everyone, but they are an undeniably old-school design addition. Fake ones add the same amount of cool detail to a room as the real kind. The concentrated pattern and uneven edges work well in rooms that are dictated by lots of straight edges.

Designer: Noa Santos.
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Photo: Courtesy of Emily Sidoti/Homepolish.
Patterned rugs can add subtle visual direction to a room. See how this rectangular one stretches the space?
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Photo: Courtesy of Claire Esparros/Homepolish.
Have too many rugs? Layer them on top of each other! A sisal rug under something plush makes for a comfortable, beach-house vibe.



Related: A Dreamy Backyard House
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Photo: Courtesy of Dustin Halleck/Homepolish.
Along with the art, ottoman, and pillows, this patterned rug adds another (literal) layer of depth to the living room. (If the sofa and armchairs were also patterned, we'd probably all feel a little dizzy after a while, but the solid-colored furniture keeps the space grounded.)

Designer: Bonnie Gonsior.
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Photo: Courtesy of Dustin Halleck/Homepolish.
When it comes to adding color to your walls or floors, rentals can be quite limiting. Luckily, pattern and hue options for rugs are limitless! Use your floor decor to add all the visual stimulation you want.
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Photo: Courtesy of Samantha Goh/Homepolish.
Our designer Matthew Cane is a big fan of runners and their impact on entryways. Under long spaces like desks and consoles, they add visual interest without taking up too much floor space.
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Photo: Courtesy of Dustin Halleck/Homepolish.
We love this striped rug. Match your floor decor to your furniture color ways, and the space will automatically feel cohesive. Don't get too matchy, though, or you'll end up with Semi-Homemade With Sandra Lee kitchen.

Related: An NYC Apartment With Musical And Moroccan Influences
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Photo: Courtesy of Claire Esparros/Homepolish.
Here's another great example of the layered-rug look. In a nursery, sheepskin on the floor creates a lush, airy feeling.
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Photo: Courtesy of Dustin Halleck/Homepolish.
Don't forget about your outdoor area! Many brands make indoor/outdoor options that withstand the elements. Make your deck an even more popular place by outfitting it with sweet patterned rugs.


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Photo: Courtesy of Kara Mercer/Homepolish.
Your bank account might start complaining if you decorate every room with 9x12 rugs, so remember that impact can be made with small, well-placed guys like this one. Create vignettes around interesting architectural elements in your home.
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Photo: Courtesy of Emily Sidoti/Homepolish.
Complement your wallpaper with your rug! In this project, our designer Matthew chose a rug with colors that worked with the gold-patterned wallpaper to create cohesion between floor and walls.
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Photo: Courtesy of Samantha Goh/Homepolish.
Area rugs help to differentiate between different — wait for it — areas. Use them to create individual spaces within an open floor plan. Here, a rug creates an "office space" sans actual walls.

Next: An Editor's Masculine & Sophisticated SoHo Home
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