5 Tips For Decorating With Rugs

Shoes on blue rug.Rugs add so much personality to a room. What was once just bare hardwood or yucky rental apartment carpet instantly gets a design makeover just by spreading a rug across the floor. I’ve lived in my share of dingily-carpeted apartments. Rugs added some much-needed visual spice to a room (and covered up at least a portion of the drab carpet.) If you have hardwood floors, which I do now, rugs bring coziness and a pop of color to plain flooring. They can do far more than just these decorating tricks, though. Here are five more practical and pretty ways to use rugs in your home.

1. Rugs separate areas

Rugs work wonders at visually separating a room. If you have a room that functions as both a living room and a dining room, for example, then you can use rugs to create divisions. Place one rug in your living area, you know, under your couch, coffee table and armchairs. And, lay another rug under your dining room table to visually separate the two sections. Without these visual cues the large room will just sort of meld together.

I used this same idea in my oddly-shaped bedroom. My bedroom functions as both my sleeping area and my office. Before I placed a rug in my “desk area” of the bedroom, the room just felt like everything was everywhere at once without any separation. Now, with the addition of the rug, my room actually feels bigger and more like the two areas are distinct.

Bedroom rug and radiator.

I know, I didn’t actually show the desk area in the picture. I’m in the process of redoing my desk and I didn’t want to show you the desk before it was complete. I’m a perfectionist, okay? Instead, you get an up-close-and-personal shot of the old school radiator in my room. (Talk about a decorating challenge.) You’ll just have to use your imagination and envision my desk to the left and my bed to the right.

2. Rugs build layers

Rugs add dimension to a room. I call it adding “layers”. Lots of items can add layers to a space. Think art on the walls, curtains around a bare window or a throw pillow on an armchair. These small touches add texture, and rugs more than any. Rugs make a room feel cozy and inviting. (Am, I obsessed much?)

3. Rugs add style

When you love that geometric patterned wallpaper….When you’re crushing on that couch in a unique textile…When you want to paint your living room a bright color….but you just can’t commit. That’s when you buy a rug. Choosing a rug in the same funky color or pattern you like gives you the option to incorporate it into your space without committing more permanently. It’s also a great option for renters!

4. Rugs create a focal point

When you don’t have an amazing stone fireplace or a “wow”-worthy bed headboard, you can use a rug to create a focal point in a room. Rugs in interesting colors, patterns or shapes can add drama to a space. Highlight your neutral bed with a vivid rug placed underneath it. Call attention to your sitting area with a circular rug. Or, pump up your dining space with a rug in an unexpected color.

5. Rugs make it cozy

Besides their visual appeal, rugs serve a practical purpose as well. They add warmth! My drafty bedroom stays seriously warmer after the addition of a rug. And, my toes aren’t so chilly all the time. There’s just something about a rug that adds comfort and makes a home more inviting.

Do you use rugs in your home? I’d love to here about how you use them in the comments…Also, feel free to post a link to your blog if you have pictures of your own favorite rugs!

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Follow Red Leaf Style author Kirsten Hudson on Twitter @kirsten_hudsonGoogle+ and Pinterest.


  1. […] I write about, every do-it-yourself project, decorating idea and thrift store find, is because it’s something that made my home feel just a little bit […]

  2. DeeDee Menzock
    August 31, 2016

    Love the use of rugs & they do make it more cozy! Can I ask what you put over your heat radiator? DeeDee

    1. Red Leaf Style
      September 1, 2016

      Hi DeeDee,

      The radiator covering was actually there when I moved in. (It was a rental.) So, I’m actually not sure what it is. But it was very handy for adding a bit of extra storage space.


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