Area Rug Glossary
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Where Area Rugs Are Made
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Understanding Rug Names
Parts of a Rug Design
The History of Rugs
Decorating with Colors
Asian |French Provencal |Lodge & Rustic |Country |Transitional/Contemporary
Modern |Traditional |Victorian |Arts & Crafts |Art Nouveau |Art Deco |Rug Shapes

Decorating with Style

As you formulate your decorating plans, each wall of your home is a canvas to express your individuality. The colors you choose, art you hang and fabric you drape on each wall will come together to create a completed room. Paint, murals and wallpapers are used to add dimension to the ceiling, also known as the "fifth wall." The “sixth wall,” then, can be found directly under your feet. Beautiful flooring options such as wood and marble add depth to a room. Your floor also presents a wonderful opportunity to display woven artwork in a quality area rug.

Often, buying a rug can seem an overwhelming task simply because the colors do not fit in with an existing home décor. Whether the pattern in the wallpaper or upholstery is too busy with the rug design or the paint on the wall just isn’t right with the colors in the rug, making a color choice can be difficult.

Since rugs are important pieces of art, one home decorating idea is to consider choosing the rug you love first, and then design the room around it as a focal point. It is easier to pick a small print for accent pillows and curtains or decide on a neutral design for the sofa and chairs so they that don’t compete visually. Rugs can, and possibly should, be a priority in interior design, and not an afterthought.

Certain décor styles fit best with specific rug designs and color combinations. Try to decide which of the following fits your style and match it with coordinating carpet designs.

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Asian Decor

Simple lines grace furniture, using reds, black and metallics. Grass cloth wall coverings and bamboo traditionally accent Asian décor. Plum branch, maple leaf, cherry blossom, Buddha and bird motifs are often featured in the design of Asian-style rugs. Japanese woodblock prints, painted screens and lanterns also help carry out the effect.

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French Provencal Decorating

This is a country style that originated in France. Provencal, also known as French country decorating, features bright colors, floral prints and painted wood furniture. The vivid colors of artists Vincent van Gough, Claude Monet, Paul Gaugin are set off nicely by this style.

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Lodge and Rustic Decor

The lodge style is perfect for cabins, second homes and rustic retreats. The lodge look is simple and focuses on plants and animals in nature.

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Country Decorating

The country look mixed rustic furniture and pretty fabrics to form a shabby chic look that has been popular for the last decade in the United States. Because American settlers on the frontier first made them, braided rugs go well with this style. Natural fiber rugs like jute or sisal also go well because of their rustic charm and natural feel.

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Transitional/Contemporary Decor

The transitional style features the decorating trends of the moment. If you enjoy living in the moment and love all the new trends you see on HGTV, then this is probably your favorite decorating style. Leather couches, big comfy sofas, duvet covers, large, straight-lined furniture and vintage advertising prints all fit that description. Rugs that tend to go with that style include natural fiber floor coverings, Flokati rugs, Kilims and Durries that feature two or three colors. Floral or geometric patterns can both fit into this style.

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Modern Decor

Modern décor typically has a futuristic feel to it no matter which decade it was produced in. Sleek Danish furniture of the 1970s, chrome furnishings of the 1950s and avante guard 1920s art deco style all fit in this category. Picasso, Dali and Matisse prints all go well with modern décor. Rugs that go well with this style typically feature geometric patterns in either subdued or brilliant colors.

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Traditional Decor

If you like traditional decorating styles, then you probably favor the past over the present, like to collect antiques and find yourself looking for vintage finds at local estate sales. Curvilinear patterns and floral designs in rich, deep tones are typical of this style.

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Victorian Style

Victorian era decorating features ornate carvings in furniture and architecture from the mid-1800s. Heavily printed floral drapes, upholstery and rugs are used. Deep blues, mauves, burgundy, pinks and purples are colors of the period. Herati motifs in carpets were favored during this time.

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Arts and Crafts Decorating

Arts and Crafts was a decorating style that flourished from the late 1800s to the 1920s in Europe and America. Because the look features clean lines and straightforward style, furnishings and textiles feature simple motifs in a nature-inspired color palette of subdued greens, yellows, brown, orange and cream. Mission-style furniture of the period has regained popularity over the last decade. William Morris, Charles Rennie Machintosh, Gustav Stickley and Frank Lloyd Wright were leading artists and architects of this period.

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Art Nouveau Decor

Art Nouveau is a style from the 1920s that featured curved lines and lavish ornamentation in art and textiles. Deep pinks, turquoise, green purples and yellows were the favored color combinations. Toulouse Lautrec, Gustav Klimt, Alphonse Mucha were leading artists of the time.

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Art Deco Style

In the timeline of decorating styles, Art Deco followed Art Nouveau and featured clean lines in cleanly stylized furnishings. Black, silver, pink, green and red were colors associated with this period.

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Decorating with Rug Shapes

Another interior decorating idea that will add interest to the sixth wall, or floor, is to use a rug that has an uncommon shape. Although rectangles are by far the most common shape of rug, a square area rug, circle, half-moon, octagon or oval area rug may be better with your furniture configuration. For instance, a half-moon shape would work well in front of a door, kitchen sink or gas fireplace.

Create visual interest by mixing different shapes of furniture with different shapes of rugs. For instance, try placing a round table on top of a square area rug, or vice versa. A rectangular coffee table on top of an oval area rug also creates an extra bit of visual interest.

Rug shapes also can be fun in children's bedrooms and playrooms. Purchase multiple small round rugs that allow children to move them around and use them in other creative ways.

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Read aboutBraided and Cotton Rugs next.

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