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Do You Need a Small Rug Under Your Coffee Table?

A small rug under your coffee table has some great uses and benefits. Learn more about how a small rug can change the appearance of your coffee table.
Photo of Natasha Johnson
By Natasha Johnson
Photo of Joel Taylor
Reviewed by Joel Taylor

Updated January 23, 2023.

The short answer to whether you should put a small rug under your coffee table is—definitely yes!

A small area rug under a coffee table has really great uses and is incredibly beneficial. However, when buying a small rug to place under your coffee table, consider your decorating style to ensure you choose the right rug for your living room.

This will help you see whether you need a rug under the coffee table only and decide what kind of rug to pick. For example, a round rug under your table adds balance to a square space, making the room appear larger and more spacious. On a more practical note, a small rug under your coffee table will protect the floor underneath, hide scratches or stains, and keep your feet warm and cozy.

» Looking for the perfect coffee table rug? These small rugs will elevate your space

How Far Should Your Rug Extend Beyond Your Coffee Table?

Decorating experts find it a good rule of thumb to measure how far your rug should extend beyond your coffee table. To choose the right rug size for a coffee table, add about 25 inches around your coffee table to allow the rug to sit neatly under the table, as well as under the front two legs of your sofa. Bear in mind that a very small rug can make your space feel smaller too.

No matter the rug you choose, the way you decide to place it with regard to your coffee table can play a big role in bringing a different perspective to your space.

1. Place the Rug Partially Under the Coffee Table

Small coffee table rug placement

The layout above shows having only two legs of your coffee table on the rug. Although it might feel a bit asymmetrical to the eye, this will allow your rug to serve as a focal point, especially if you're pairing the rug with a sectional in your living room. This placement allows the rug to create a good sense of proportion and space.

2. Put the Entire Rug Under the Coffee Table

Small coffee table rug placement

In the above example, the area rug is larger than the coffee table and placed entirely underneath it. This can offer an appealing feel and a lovely look to the space. The rug placed in front of the seats also defines the seating arrangement and brings full structure to the space, making your living room will look well put together.

3. Separate the Rug from the Coffee Table

Small coffee table rug placement

Not having any coffee table legs on the rug sounds like a wild idea, but sometimes rules are meant to be broken—especially if they can offer a whole new aesthetic to a space. This layout allows the patterns of your rug to stand out, creating a completely different look and allowing the room to feel more spacious.

» Need more rug placement guidance? See how to place an area rug in your living room

Change the Appearance of Your Coffee Table With a Small Rug

As it adds a splash of personality while enhancing your living room décor, you definitely need a small rug under your coffee table. And if your rug is smaller than you'd like, fret not—there are ways to work with a smaller size, like layering up and combining it with a larger rug.

Adding rugs under your coffee table will undoubtedly pull the room together, changing the appearance of your coffee table while showcasing your individual style. Whether you opt for runners or round rugs, a small rug under the coffee table will add something unique to your living room and define your coffee table space.

» Need a small rug for your living room? Take a look at our small rug offer and find one that will vamp up the appearance of your coffee table!

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