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How to Buy a Rug

A rug is a wonderful addition to bedrooms, living rooms, walkways and more. They add warmth, can cool down a hot patio, add style, color, and can also be just plain fun. With so many options on the market rug shopping can be overwhelming, but with a bit of planning you will be able to easily find the rug to suit your needs.

There are a lot of things to determine when purchasing a rug, including the ideal size, style, shape, material, and construction. At ATG Stores we want to make the entire process as easy for you as possible.

Rug Size

Rug Size - As the old adage goes, "measure twice, cut once." The same is true for Area Rugs. The worst possible thing would be to get a rug that is either too big or too small for its intendend use. Fortunately, ATG Stores has tried to make it easy to determine the correct size for your rug. Here are some of our tips, depending on which room you are shopping for your rug.

Dining Room: For the dining room, you'll want to find an Area Rug that fits comfortably under your dining table while leaving plenty of rooms for the legs of the dining chairs. You do not want the back pair of legs to be resting on the floor while the front legs rest on the rug. It will create an uneven and uncomfortable dining experience. A good rule of thumb is to measure your dining room table width and length, and then look for a rug that has an added 54" to the dimension. Ideally your rug is at least 2 feet away from walls and your rug is big enough for dining room chairs to fit on.

Living Room: The rug in your living room will sit neatly in the center of your main furniture such as couch, chairs and coffee table. There is no rule of thumb as to how large or small this rug should be, though generally the bigger the rug, the more it will bring the elements of the room together. To get the correct dimensions, measure from the center of the living room. Remember, it is not a good idea to have your rug extend underneath your entertainment center.

Bedroom Rugs: The best place for a rug in the bedroom is right under the bed. This way when you hop out of bed in the morning your feet don't immediately hit cold floor. You'll need at least an additional 24 inches on each side to provide adequate room for your feet. To add even more softness to your room, consider a larger rug that will extend out to the end of your nightstand.

Runners: Runners are a great way to accent boring hallways or entryways. They are long and narrow rugs that are ideal for front entry ways and hallways. For an entry way runner, measure the width of your door and the length of the entry way. Subtract 12 inches from the length of your entry way and you will have dimension for you runner. For a hallway, measure the length and width of the hallway. Subtract 12 inches from the width and 24 inches from the length for the dimension of the rug.

Kid's Room Rugs: There are a couple different approaches to rugs in kid's rooms. The first is putting a rug under the bed; refer to bedroom for rug how to find the best rug dimensions in this case. Another option is to put a rug in a corner which will set it off as the "play zone". Measure the area that you want to be the "play area," subtract 6 inches from the width and length so the rug isn't pushed right up against the wall and you have the perfect play area.

Rug Style

Traditional/Oriental Rugs replicate the classic patterns, colors, and styles of antique rugs. Below we outline some of the most popular rugs in the traditional style category. Here are the main traditional rugs:

  •   • Persian and oriental rugs feature intricate patterns, including many that specific to particular tribes of weavers. The motifs and patterns used can identify where an ancient rug was made, and who made it.
  •   • Tribal Flat-Weaves - Many tribal flat-weave rugs are also examples of oriental or Persian styles. Styles like kilims and dhurries were woven originally by nomadic peoples to be used as blankets. However, similar weaving styles are also characteristic of Native American and Central American rugs, including rugs that fall under the often misused classification of Navajo rugs.
  •   • Aubusson and Savonnerie - Typically featuring floral medallions in open fields, Aubusson rugs were originally flat-weave rugs. Today the Aubusson patterns have been adapted into more foot-friendly pile rugs. The Aubusson is the model for many contemporary Indian and Persian rug styles.

Transitional Rugs combine both contemporary and traditional design styles into one, creating a look that is both classic and modern. Transitional rugs join contemporary elements like animal prints with traditional borders, simplify antique patterns into clean lines and shapes, and add bright colors to the antique look of traditional rugs.

Contemporary Rugs feature a geometric design; this can include geometric shapes, waves and squiggles, blocks, stripes and bold circles. Contemporary rugs also tend to showcase brighter colors than other styles of rugs. Compared to the subdued colors of casual rugs, contemporary rugs have bright, trendy colors throughout their designs, including bright, monochromatic shades.

  •   • Geometric symbols
  •   • Modern Art
  •   • Zebra Prints
  •   • Checkered/Plaid

Indoor/Outdoor Rugs - Outdoor rugs are the crossover category for rug styles. Outdoor rugs can come in any of the styles above, and they also have the ability to be outdoors and withstand the elements. Outdoor rugs will be resistant to mold and mildew. This is the rug style you should explore if you plan to leave your rug outdoors and unprotected for long periods of time.

Casual rugs have either a basic pattern or no pattern at all. A simple monochromatic rug or a rug with a simple border will be in our "casual rug" category. Casual rugs are crafted of natural materials, including bamboo, simple wool, leather, jute and sisal.

Rag & Braided Rug - A rug made from strips of fabric hooked into or pushed through a base material such as burlap.

Animal Rugs are rugs that are featuring an animal print

Kids Rugs are rugs designed for kids

Shag & Flotaki Rugs is a shag wool rug with a thick loose pile. They look very comfortable.

Southwest/Rustic/Lodge Rugs typically have a more southwestern feel or highlight wildlife.

Rug Construction

Though rugs have been around for hundreds of years, the basic construction techniques have not changed. Hand woven rugs involve considerable time and attention to detail. However, technology has also allowed rugs to become machine made, which while drastically reducing the amount of time and cost involved to producing the rug, uses the same basic techniques. The construction type of rug can play a role in its softness and durability. Below are the common types of construction techniques.

Rug Studio Kids Sculp Flower Power Area Rug

Hand-Knotted - This is the most labor intensive type of rug construction. It requires that master weavers tie individual knots within the yars that make up the length of a rug. The knots form the actual surface, or pile, of the rug. In general, the more knots, the more durable and valuable the rug. Because hand woven knots are created by hand, they are unique and like a snowflake, no two are exactly alike.

Tufted - Tufted rugs are easier to manufacturer, because they are created without knots. To make a tufted rug, loops of yarn are pulled through a rug's backing material, either by machine or by hand. Once completed, the loops are then sheared to create a smooth, cut pile surface. Less work is required with tufted rugs, so they can be created more quickly and easily, but with a high quality. Tufted rugs may shed more than other rugs so may require more vacuuming.

Hooked - Hooked rugs are similar to tufted rugs, though the yarn loops are left intact. With a hooked rug, loops of yarn are pulled through a rug's backing material by machine or with hand-held hooking needle. But instead of being sheared, the loops are left alone, creating a knobby, embroidered look.

Flat-Woven - Unlike the rugs above, flat-weaves do not have a pile. Instead, the rug's vertical yarns (warps) are simply woven through the horizontal yarns (wefts). Flat-woven rugs, such as Kilims and Dhurries, can be produced by hand or machine.

Braided - Braided rugs, like flat-weaves, do no not have a pile and are usually reversible. Yarns are braided into one continuous rope that is then sewn together in a spiral fashion. The result is a very strong, durable piece that holds up in nearly any environment.

Draw Up a Budget

Next determine a budget for your area rug. Rugs are priced from low to high and every point in between. The cost difference is usually in part to the quality of materials used, the way the rug was made (by hand or machine) and the size. Rugs are usually put in high traffic areas making it important to invest in quality materials to be sure that your rug lasts and does not begin to show wear and tear soon after your purchase.

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