How Big Should Your Area Rug Be? - Beija Flor Answers

How Big Should Your Area Rug Be?

Knowing the right size for your area rug is essential when deciding what to buy. Here are some quick tips to help you choose.

Photo of Natasha Johnson
By Natasha Johnson
Photo of Joel Taylor
Edited by Joel Taylor

Published June 21, 2022.

The perfect rug can completely transform your living area, as it is the focal point that enhances the overall look and feel—so knowing what size your area rug should be is a very important, if not the most important, element when you're ready to invest in the right rug for your living room.

Ideally, furniture should be on your area rug to create a more open feel. In this case, bigger is better! It can feel like a costly venture, but too small of a rug can make your living room feel disjointed and patchy.

That being said, here are some layout options to consider when choosing the right size for your rug.

How Much Floor Should Show With an Area Rug?

As little as possible! A general rule of thumb is to make sure that the rug is 6-8 inches wider than your sofa on all sides and that you still have about 18 inches of exposed floor space around the perimeter of your area rug.

How to Best Measure an Area Rug

The shape of your living room, as well as your furniture, will also help with the size you choose and where to place the rug. This can help make the space feel larger and more cohesively connected (the rug should ideally feel proportional to the living space).

  1. Grab your measuring tape and start with the length of your rug.
  2. Follow with your tape to the opposite end of the rug—make sure your tape is on "zero" and measure along the length.
  3. Keep the tape in line with the rug.
  4. Place the end of the tape to the end of the shorter edge—the width—of your rug.
  5. Again, make sure the end of your measuring tape is in line with the rug.