A guide to the perfect rug

Trying to shop for the perfect new rug can be really tricky. What size should it be? What colour? Wool or cotton? Will my dog ruin it? And how do I even keep a rug clean?

We know the feeling and, as textile experts, we’ve got the answers to all your rug questions.

Rugs are good for so much more than just keeping your hardwood floors from being scratched by stiletto heels. They add that touch of warmth and homeliness and can even visually enlarge a room. Some rug designs are true works of art and make a great eyecatcher among neutral tones. If the colour scheme of your living room is rather sleek with a lot of whites and beiges, why not add a bright blue, tufted rug for that refreshing pop of colour?

But big or small, round or square? Don’t make the most common mistake by buying a rug that’s too small for your room. Your rug will look out of place and visually dwarf your room – and unless you live in Buckingham Palace, that’s really not something you want.

We’ll tell you which rug sizes, colours and materials will make the most of your home. If your rug question isn’t answered below, simply call our textile experts on 0800 77 97 527 to get free advice.


What size should my rug be?

It’s a knee jerk reaction to want to furnish a small room with a small rug, hoping it will make the space appear larger. But doing so may in fact have the opposite effect, and could visually dwarf the room. We suggest to always go for a bigger rug, if unsure.

The key to choosing the perfect size for any room is to make sure that the foremost legs of the furniture – whether a sofa, armchairs, or a bed – are overlapping on rug’s edge.

A big rug is a must for blogger A Pinch of Style

Ask yourself too how you want to use the space. A rug can help to separate areas within a large room. Place the biggest rug in the “focus” area of the room to highlight this space.

In your living room you should first measure the length of your sofa and then add about 60 cm, this will give you the ideal length for a rug. Place your sofa with the front legs on the rug.

The rug in your dining room should always be placed under the dining room table and chairs. This reduces the noise level in the room. The rug should be about 70 cm longer than the table on all sides, so that you do not stand on the rug’s edge when moving the chairs. If you have a round dining room table, the rug should also be round.

In the bedroom you could either place your bed on a very large rug, which should exceed all sides of the bed. But you can also place two long runners to the right and left of the bed to visually frame the room.

Runners are usually ideal for the hallway. Always leave about 15 cm between the wall and rug and of course enough space for the front door to open seamlessly. Avoid placing any furniture on your runner in the hall.

What colour should my rug be?

Light, warm colours are cozy and welcoming, while dark warm tones can visually dwarf a space and often appear too busy. Cool tones can be refreshing and calm. Dark cool tones should, however, always be complemented with light, neutral tones.

Of course, the entrance area in particular should be welcoming which makes bright, warm colours perfect for this space. Hallways often don’t have windows, which is why a bright yellow can make up for the lack of sunlight.

Your living room should be an area to relax and feel particularly homely. A rug in soft, earthy colours or vibrant green can create a mellow atmosphere that invites you to stay.

Bedrooms need calming colours. Bright reds or yellows are out of place here, as they disrupt the peaceful nature of bedrooms. A big rug in a soft blue will create a tranquil atmosphere in your bedroom.

Which rugs are suitable for pets?

Whether you have a dog, a cat or an iguana – a flat-woven cotton rug will be your best friend. This type of rug will reduce the risk of your pet’s claws getting caught in the thread. Cotton rugs are also very durable and can even be placed in the washing machine if they’re the right size.

If you’d rather not vacuum every day, you might want to consider buying a rug in a similar colour to your pet’s fur, too. That way, if your fluffy friend sheds fur, it won’t be too visible on your rug.


Wool or cotton: which is better?

Wool rugs absorb moisture and odours very well. The natural oils in the sheep’s wool make these rugs less sensitive to stains. The material repels dirt and water very well and also has antistatic properties, which prevents dust from settling quickly.

Wool is naturally a very warm material and therefore contributes to a cozy atmosphere in your home. Wool rugs insulate warmth, by storing air between the fibres.
Wool is of course a renewable resource and therefore a popular choice among environmentally conscious customers.
Wool rugs should not be kept in bathrooms as constant moisture can damage the material.

Cotton & wool

Cotton rugs are a true classic among natural fibre rugs. Similar to wool, this material absorbs moisture, giving the rug thermo-regulating properties. However, cotton is generally lighter and more comfortable during summer months. A cotton rug is also unsuitable for permanent use in the bathroom.

Cotton is very durable and always the first choice for customers suffering from allergies.

The material is easy to dye which increases the variety of colours and patterns. Colourful cotton rugs make for a great children’s bedroom accessory. Cotton is very easy to maintain and smaller runners can even be placed the washing machine.

There are also materials such as jute rugs or viscose which live up to both wool and cotton, if neither wool nor cotton appeals.

Viscose is extremely soft underfoot and can be tufted like wool, though is a little more static. Jute is brilliant for temporary outdoor use, and is an extremely durable, earthy fibre. Jute rugs also have a low environmental footprint.











Which rugs are especially soft?

Viscose is incomparably soft on the skin. The material is often referred to as “bamboo silk”.

Wool rugs are also soft, but depending on the type of wool, can be a more rough than cotton, for example. The sheep’s living environment actually makes a significant difference in the softness of the wool. Sheep living in the highlands have particularly resistant and bristly fur, while that of sheep grazing in lowland areas is uniquely soft.

Cotton rugs are typically very soft, despite their durability. A lot of our clothes are made of cotton due to these properties. The material is lighter and more airy than wool and therefore offers less warmth.

Which rugs don’t give off fluff?

Especially new wool rugs give off fluff. This is, however, a completely normal feature of these rugs. If you’d prefer to skip the frequent vacuuming, there are several other options.
Cotton rugs can also give off fluff when they’re new, as loose fibres slowly come off. No need to worry though, as this will stop after vacuuming your rug a few times.

Viscose rugs typically don’t give off fluff or very little. Jute rugs are also not typically affected by lint, as the plant fiber is very firm and the fibres don’t tend to loosen.


What does weaved, tufted and knotted actually mean?


In the weaving process, two thread systems are crossed at right angles. The vertical threads are called warp and the transverse threads are called weft.


A knotted rug requires a skeleton of warp threads that the pile yarn, for example wool, is knotted into, row by row.


The pile yarn is sewn into a skeleton of fabric. Before the needle is pulled back, “grippers” hold the yarn tightly, causing loops. These loops can then be cut open to create a tufted rug.

Blogger A Pinch of Style happily lets her kids play on our rugs.

Handmade or machine-made rugs: which is better?

We exclusively produce hand woven, -tufted and -knotted rugs. By supporting the traditional craftsmanship of weavers around the world, we provide working opportunities for artisans in regions where rug weaving has a rich history. Due to the unique artistry of each weaver, each rug is a singley-made piece of art… that machine-made rugs simply can’t live up to.

Are URBANARA’s rugs safe for children? What treatments do they undergo?

Each and every one of our rugs is made according to strict European standards. In fact, the vast majority of our rugs are even certified by independent certification bodies.

The 100% natural fibres we use to make our rugs are cured and washed using safe, European-approved treatments. This process removes any pollutants or pathogens. That way, we can guarantee that a safe and risk-free rug is moving into your home.

Sometimes, the rugs may have lingering scents from these treatments, but don’t worry: they’re safe for the whole family, and the odour will quickly disappear once you lay it out.


How do I clean my rug?

Wool is a naturally dirt-resistant fibre, and therefore repels most liquids and conceal stains well. If you do spill liquid on your rug, softly dab the liquid with a paper towel. Soap or detergent are not advised, as the chemicals dissolve the natural oils in wool, removing the rug’s protective layer. Dry stains can be easily brushed off.

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A cotton rug can usually be sufficiently cleaned with a vacuum cleaner because the pile is malleable. Remove deeper stains with a dry powder (natural ones are available) which you rub into the rug and then vacuum off. Small runners can even be placed in the washing machine – simply skip the spin cycle.

To remove odours and give your rug a bit of a refresh, sprinkle baking soda on the surface, leave for a couple of hours, then vacuum off. For a deep, comprehensive clean, you can always have your rug professionally cleaned.

Will a rug damage my hardwood flooring?

Not with a rug underlay!

It’s true that, with heavy or prolonged use, rugs can dull polished or oiled surfaces, particularly wooden floorboards or parquetry.

Flooring unconcealed by rugs, and so exposed to natural light and air circulation, can also darken over time: by using a rug underlay, however, air can circulate more freely, helping to keep both your rug and floor in good condition.

It also prevents colour or dye transferring onto your flooring, which can occur over time. In addition, they also provide a soft layer that will prevent dulling or scuffing of flooring, and will help keep the rug from slipping, holding it in place. Rug underlays are worth every cent.