Over the last f=years or so, one of the hot decorating trends has been the look of layering rugs on top of each other. While I personally love the look, I also recognize that there are a few PROS and CONS and RULES OF THUMB when it come to designing with layered rugs.
RULES OF THUMB:
* Layering works best when the patterned rug is on top of a solid colored rug.
* Layered rugs function best when the under rug has a pile of 1/2″ or less.
* Layered rugs look best when the textures compliment each other rather than fight each other.
* To get the best look from your layered rug, pick a rug at least 18″ to 24″ larger than the rug that will sit on top of it. The under rug will help frame the smaller rug.
* To layer multiple rugs with different patterns…seek the help of a professional designer. This look is really had to pull off and in most cases will look like a mistake.
* In large rooms, layered rugs can help to literally and visually warm up the space. Think of it just as you would clothing in the winter….layers add warmth and a coziness!
* In high traffic areas or main living spaces, layering a rug over wall to wall carpeting can be a great way to protect it from spills and stains.
* If you happened to have concrete or tile floors, layered rugs will add cushion and make living in the space more comfortable.
* Layered rugs can help define living space and create a focal point with large open rooms.
* Layered rugs can add that punch of pattern and/or color that’s needed to bring a room to life.
* Layering rugs can save your money. Rather than splurge on a large oriental or patterned rug, use a solid colored sisal or jute rug as the under layer and add a smaller version of your patterned rug on top. You’ll still get the benefit of the design without the added cost.
* Layering over higher pile rugs can cause the top rug to buckle and not lay flat…a trippng hazard!
* In some rooms that get lots of natural sunlight, the exposed space of the under rug can fade over time and create a contrast with the rug space that has been covered up by the top rug.
* Layering multiple patterns together can create that “I ran out of rug” look if not done correctly!
Here are a few awesome examples of layering done right and one example of that I think is not such a great look.
Enjoy and be inspired to layer!
Don’t always think that the top rug has to be laid the same direction as the bottom rug. Angle that top rug to add an eclectic feel.
I love the two textures mixed together…subtle but complimentary.
This is a great example of using that top rug to bring in a little color and pattern. The larger rug fills the space and frames the smaller rug perfectly.
Not only does the layering of these rugs help to defined the space but the placement and sizes used connect the two seating areas together making the space feel as one!
Another great example of using a layered rug to help define a small space within a larger room.
Without the top rug, the bottom rug would just blend in with the wall color. The addition of the patterned rug on top adds the right amount of interest and personality!
Cowhide or Zebra rugs (real or faux) are a really popular option of layering not only because they add a shape contrast but because they add an element of style.
This look is a great example of when two patterned rugs work together when layered. The bottom rug is a larger, open and geometric pattern while the zebra rug plays up the same colors but with a more defined, intricate pattern. The contrast works in harmony.
And then this look…multiple patterns and colors that just don’t seem to work well together. I get wanting to create an eclectic look for the space but it comes off looking like a jumbled mess in my book.
So what do you think….is the layered look for you or not?
If you’re not quite sure yet, here’s some advice from two of Americas top designers that might sway you.
“I like the warm, deep-comfort look of smaller rugs laid right on top of wall-to-wall carpet. The smaller rug could be a bigger-scale pattern…or a needlepoint, or a beautiful Oriental,” said Billy Baldwin (1903-1984), in Billy Baldwin Decorates (1972).
Layering rugs, like layering clothes, adds texture, color, and dimension. The effect is “calm and warm,” says interior designer Suzanne Rheinstein, owner of Hollyhock, a Los Angeles home store.