Standard Rug Sizes: The Right Sized Rug for Every Room
Complete guide to standard rug sizes for living rooms, dining rooms, entryways, bedrooms, home offices, hallways, kitchens, and more!
Choosing the right sized rug for your space can be daunting if you don’t know what you’re doing. But this simple guide will take all the guess work out of it.
Standard Rug Sizes
As you begin the search for the perfect rug, you’ll find that they generally come in four basic shapes: rectangles (by far the most common), squares, circles, and ovals. And you’ll also notice that they come in somewhat standard sizes.
While you may not find every rug available in exactly a 5’x7′ rectangle, you’ll notice that most area rugs come in a size that’s approximately 5’x7′, give or take a few inches. And a variance of two or three inches isn’t going to make much difference in most rooms, so I’ll use approximate sizes.
General Area Rug Size Guidelines
- Leave a border of bare floor around the edges. Ideally you want the edges of an area rug in any given room be be at least one foot away from the walls.
- Bigger is usually better. It’s tempting to go with a smaller sized rug to save money. But a larger rug that fills more of the space will almost always look better.
- Measure it out. When in doubt, get out a tape measure and a roll of masking tape and mark the outline of the rug size you’re considering on the floor.
We’ll start with rectangular rugs, since they are the most popular and easiest to find in a variety of colors, patterns, and materials. You’ll also find the most size options in this shape.
The three smallest rugs on the chart below really fall into the “accent rugs” category, and they shouldn’t be considered for most living rooms, bedrooms, etc. We’ll discuss accent rugs more below.
The larger sizes, beginning with the 5’x7′ rug, are considered area rugs. These are the sizes to consider for living rooms, dining rooms, bedrooms, and home offices.
Square rugs are much less common than rectangles, but you can find them in many different styles and patterns. Again, the four smallest sizes on the chart below are accent rugs, suitable for bathrooms, entryways, kitchens, etc. But any larger space will need a larger area rug. A 7′ square rug is the very smallest I would go for a living room, but larger is almost always better.
Round rugs can be a little more difficult to find in multiple sizes, but they are often great options for living rooms/family rooms, dining rooms, and bedrooms.
Why choose a round rug?
Interior spaces tend to have a lot of square corners and straight lines, both in the architecture and furniture. So it’s nice to break up the monotony with something round, whether it’s a coffee table or a large area rug.
Round rugs are also great for living rooms and family rooms, since the furniture tends to be arranged in a group with the different pieces facing one another. A round rug provides an island to arrange a seating group around.
And finally, many homes built in the past 30 years have diagonal corner fireplaces. This can present a problem for a rectangular or square rug. But a circle can fit the space easily.
Oval rugs are the most difficult to find, but they can work great in rooms for many of the same reasons circles work well.
Runner rugs are long, narrow rectangular rugs. They’re designed for hallways, entryways, kitchens, laundry rooms, mudrooms, and sometimes bathrooms. While all the area rugs we’ve discussed so far are intended to have large pieces of furniture sitting on them and holding them in place, runners usually stand alone.
Here’s a list of my favorite inexpensive modern runners you can order online.
2′ wide runner rugs are the most common, and you’ll see them available in many different sizes. The next size up is approximately 2 feet 5 inches wide, and again these are relatively common. If you have a wider hallway or entryway, you’ll want to look for a wider 4′ runner rug to fill the space, or you may need to order a custom sized runner.
Accent rugs are small rugs that fit into smaller spaces. Like runner rugs, they usually do not have furniture sitting on them, so unless they come with a rubber backing, they need to be kept from sliding around with a rug pad or rug grippers.
Accent rugs make great welcome mats, and you may also want to use one or more in the kitchen, bathrooms, laundry room, mudroom, and entryway. Just remember that more rugs equal more tripping hazards, so it’s generally better to have fewer larger rugs than a lot of small ones.
What sizes do accent rugs come in?
The most common accent rug sizes are 2’x3′ and 3’x5′. The other sizes and shapes on the chart below are out there, but you’ll have to search a little harder for them.
Here’s a list of my favorite inexpensive accent rugs.
Standard Living Room Rug Sizes
What are standard living room rug sizes?
The most common living rooms rugs are 8’x10′ and 9’x12′ rectangles. A square, round, or oval rug can also work well in a living or family room, as long as the front legs of the important seating furniture all sit on the rug.
I would definitely not go smaller than a 6’x9′ rug for a living room or family room.
Here’s my more in-depth guide to choosing the right size and shape of rug specifically for a living, family, or TV room: Living Room Rug Placement: The Ultimate Guide.
Standard Bedroom Rug Sizes
The most popular bedroom rug sizes are 8’x10′ and 9’x12′. But the size of the rug should ultimately be determined by the size of the room and the bed.
A rectangular rug should generally be placed perpendicular to the bed, and it should be large enough that it sticks out at least a couple of feet on either side of the bed so when you get up in the morning your feet don’t hit the cold floor.
Here are examples of sizes that work well under a king sized bed, and a couple that are not great.
Dining Room Rug Sizes
The biggest mistake I see people make when choosing a dining room rug is getting one that’s too small. Anytime you have chairs that need to be moved around (in this case dining chairs), it’s important to make sure they can be pulled out from the table and pushed back in without the back legs getting caught on the edge of the rug.
Here’s the rule of thumb for a rug under a dining table: The rug should extend at least two feet all the way around the dining table. So take the dimensions of your table and add 48 inches to each to get the minimum size for the rug.
Home Office Rug Sizes
Since home offices come in many different shapes & sizes, there are no hard and fast rules for standard rug sizes. But there are still a few things to consider:
Since desk chairs need to be pulled in and out and they’re often on casters, it’s important to be sure the chair is either completely on the rug or completely off the rug. Otherwise the wheels or legs will get caught and rumple up the rug every time you go to sit down.
Notice how the area rug in the home office below is large enough to go under both the desk and the task chair, with plenty of room for the chair to move around?
And in this office, the larger area rug isn’t large enough to go completely under the desks, so a smaller round rug has been placed under each task chair.
You may find it easier to go without a rug under the desk chair. If this is the case, you’ll still want at least an accent rug to warm up the hard floors, but you can place it elsewhere in the room. That’s what I chose to do in my last home office:
I hope you found this guide helpful! If you have questions I didn’t answer, feel free to leave them in the comments below. Happy rug shopping!
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