Geoffrey Bradfield

16 World Famous Interior Designers’ Tips on Area Rugs

After working on hundreds of projects, designers are full of practical advice on choosing area rugs.   As one of the largest pieces in any room, rugs will immediately make or break the space and everything you layer in afterward. That’s why many designers, like Martyn Lawrence Bullard, won’t start working on a space until they’ve selected the rug.

Here’s a selection of their best tips:

On Lifestyle

“An area rug for a single female client is very different from that for a family with 5 kids, 2 dogs, and a cat. I always seek out area rugs that are durable and beautiful. Durability and cleanability are two factors that are always important to me.” (Roderick Shade via Architectural Digest)

“Carpet affects the acoustics of the room: in spaces that need a little dampening, the fullest, deepest carpet will quiet the space.” (Wallace Cunningham via Architectural Digest)

“First of all I look into the climate (tropical, mountain, cold, etc) before choosing material and design.” (Juan Montoya via Architectural Digest)

Juan Montoya

Juan Montoya

On Style

“Carpets can state something very personal about a person’s history and interests, as well as making political and religious statements. Carpets also reflect history and culture (one could literally tour the globe and discover its history by looking at carpets). Carpets can be art.”  (Wallace Cunningham via Architectural Digest)

“I look for character when choosing or designing an area rug.” (William Georgis via Architectural Digest)

William T Georgis

William T Georgis

“My rooms are architectural and spare so I prefer to use antique area rugs as accents. I don’t like to waste them under beds or couches.” (Karin Blake via Architectural Digest)

On Color

“A good rug is the anchor for any room’s decorative scheme. I usually build my colors around the rug, pulling from the most random threads in the rug as accessory colors for pillows and lamp shades.” (Martyn Lawrence-Bullard via Architectural Digest)

Martyn Lawrence Bullard

Martyn Lawrence Bullard

“Always a quiet elegance — a shouting rug is never grounding to the spirit of one’s soul.”  (Suzanne Lovell via Architectural Digest)

“The perfect area rug should be of the right mix of colors to sit comfortably on the floor. After all, it is the equivalent of the ground we walk on. Pastels and white carpets should be left to the occasional-use room, and even then feel like any minute a disaster might occur.” (Mariette Himes Gomez via Architectural Digest)

On Materials

“I must confess that we don’t use standard rugs on our projects. Custom rugs are a signature in our interiors. However, we do use sisal rugs, which are not expensive.” (Geoffrey Bradfield via Architectural Digest)

Geoffrey Bradfield

Geoffrey Bradfield

“Wool—not nylon!” (William Hodgins via Architectural Digest)

“I look for area rugs that are high quality hand knotted with both wool and silk.” (Donna Livingston via Architectural Digest)

Donna Livingston

Donna Livingston

“Make sure it’s made from natural materials.” (Laura Hunt via Architectural Digest)

On Size

“When choosing your rug size make sure your furniture fits onto the rug.  Sofas always look better on a rug rather than off or worse still half on and half off.” (Martyn Lawrence Bullard via Architectural Digest)

 

Elaine Griffin

Elaine Griffin

“For bedrooms, a good rule of thumb for size is to leave approximately 12″ of floor space between the edge of the rug and the base molding. For living rooms rugs, we would leave about 18″-24″ off the wall depending on the size of the room and whether or not the room is shaped or if there is a hearthstone.” (Ellie Cullman via Architectural Digest)

Cullman & Kravis Associates

Cullman & Kravis Associates

“The shape of the carpet is entirely dependent upon the shape of the room and the layout of the furniture. Sometimes you like the carpet to appear as an island in a hard space, supporting the furniture, and sometimes you like it to fill the entire space.” (Wallace Cunningham via Architectural Digest)

To view more area rugs, click here.

 

 

 

 

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