Expert Tips For Decorating With Multiple Area Rugs

Today's featured video is by Eric Guenther, an Interior Designer from California.  He's telling you to bold up and stop being so scared to mix things up a bit in the pattern department.  

In this video you will learn...
  • Why you should be brave when making rug selections
  • What rugs should have in common when decorating with 2 or more
  • What to avoid when decorating with 2 or more rugs.

Mixing Patterned Rugs and Fabrics

Park Fears Aside

As a designer, I am not afraid of the prospect of mixing a patterned rug with patterned furniture and even pattered drapery.  But rather welcome that because the complexity and the texture that you can weave into the room the opportunity is much greater if there's that bravery in making selections.  

Create Links Through Color

Just to drive that point home further is the beauty of strong color and how it combines two different elements together as long as they have that color ingredient in common.  In selecting this first rug, which has only 3 main colors to it, and creates a very strong foundation for the space.  

To illustrate that, the second rug, which of course has a much more complex color pallet, sits beautifully with it.  Whether it's as an entry rug, or an adjacent dining room, or just as a companion to this.  The fact that that strong element of orange that is in the first rug and found in the second allows all these all these other shades to work beautifully together.  

The fact that the rug is well designed, and there is a composition of color that the tomato color works so beautifully with all the shades of green; and even the touch of pink and white.  Holds true not to just the rug thats on top, but the fact that that same relationship of green to tomato carries it along and lets it sit happily next to or on top of the rug that's underneath it.

One really wonderful element in a rug that is an unusual color combination as this is is that the companion pieces are joined together by their color association.  

Avoid Using Two Rugs of the Same Pattern

There is absolutely no need to feel compelled to find a second rug that's going to be used in the room either under a dining room table or a runner or whatever the purpose is; to have a second rug; to feel that they have to be miniature versions of one another.  As a matter of fact, I would personally suggest that rather than using a small and large version of the exact same pattern that you take a leap and use a stripe or another kind of geometry.  It's the colors that will bond those two rugs together and make them part of a whole that is the room rather than the similarity of design.

Tips for decorating with 2 or more rugs

Assure Durability by Buying Quality

A worry about living with rugs with pets and children; and sometimes with adults.  Rugs if they are made correctly with the finest quality materials are not nearly as fragile as one might think.  I'm often asked as I love to use needle points that they seem so lightweight and thin and I'm asked bout the durability.  My experience with accidents and pets is that the rugs are extremely durable.  It's always a great idea to have the appropriate kind of cleaning solution handy for that occasional accident but to know that these rugs have been in homes for sometimes 50, 60 or 100 years and the same thing is true of one that is well made today.  

As a matter of fact, the color fastness of our dies and the better quality of the wool that is used means that the rug will actually last longer.  So live with your rug and enjoy it; that's what it's all about.  If you find yourself so fearful of walking on your rug that your not comfortable in the room than we've missed our job and that is o make sure that the rug brings a comforting element to the room; not one that says don't come in here and don't walk on me.  That seems foolish.

 Eric Guenther's work includes both large and small scale custom residential projects. His portfolio consists of projects located on the East coast, West coast, Indonesia, Hong Kong and the Hawaiian Islands.

Eric offers some great advice on decorating with rugs.  I love the advice on being bold and mixing up patterns.  We have a social tendency to want to play it safe and get matching rugs.  It's a social behavior that we are taught very early on in life. But the stand out designs are always the ones that stray away from the norm and blow us away with out of this world style.  

  • Be bold to add complexity and texture to a space.
  • Use color as a common thread when decorating with multiple rugs
  • Do NOT use different sizes of the same rug pattern; instead find geometric variations of similar colors
  • Go for quality verses price if a long rug life is important

What do you think?  Be bold or play it safe?  Leave us a comment.
Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.