Decorating with Oriental Rugs and Persian Carpets, Part 2

by Lisa Stewart 15 Oct 2012

(See part 1 of this 2-part series)

This Persian carpet sets the mood for this suburban New York living room. Its color palette brings balance to the mix of antiques and modern furniture. While the iron coffee table and the screen create fun and a certain edginess, the rug adds needed punch and warmth.

If you’re thinking of buying a carpet you might find helpful these words of wisdom I’ve accumulated over the years:

- If possible purchase your carpet first and let everything else magically fall into place. With carpet “foundation” set it’s much easier to build the room’s color palette, and choose fabrics and furnishings.
- Take your time and fall in love with your rug like it were a piece of art for the floor. Find a rug you can live with forever. It is always easier to find paint colors and fabrics to match your rug, compared to finding a rug to match existing colors and fabrics. 
- Choose a rug that suites your lifestyle. How do you plan on using the room? Solid color rugs show all spots and stains while ones with big, busy patterns can hide a multitude of sins. Be practical. 
- Select the right size. Perhaps pull the room together by placing a single, large rug under every major piece of furniture. Or create clean lines by positioning the rug nearly touching the pieces in the seating area. Usually it’s not a good idea to place some pieces on the rug while and others off. It’s normally best to be all on or all off.
- When placing a rug under a dining table, remember to leave enough room so the chair legs remain on the carpet when pulled out. About two and a half feet beyond each dimension of the table should leave enough room.
- Once you find a carpet you like ask where and how it was made if you can. Know what you’re purchasing.  
- Take a few rugs home on trial. The light of your home may affect the color. Walk around the rug and note if the tones change as you move from side to side. Some change very dramatically.

Are you ready take a ride on a magic carpet and let the decorating begin? 

(See part 1 of this 2-part series)

Lisa Stewart is an Interior Designer in Raleigh, NC.