Rugs On Carpet? Should You? Yes, You Should!

A commonly asked design question when you have carpet in your home is, “can you put a rug on carpet?” I’m not sure what the designers and decorators say but the answer from me is a big YES! As a serial renter (we’ve lived in nine different rental homes now), I’m a firm believer in using area rugs all over your home, especially in spaces with carpet! Adding a rug to a carpeted room can give your space a little more personality. It also achieves a more upgraded look and is essential when you cannot change major design elements like flooring. There’s no shame in adding area rugs to your home. In fact, as much as I love hardwood floors, I would even through rugs over them. When it comes to adding a rug to carpet, there are a few things to keep in mind. Today, let’s look at the do’s and don’ts for rugs on carpet! 

should you put rugs on carpet? design ideas

Should You Put an Area Rug on Carpet?

For me, it’s a yes! We’ve lived in too many rental homes (even military base housing) with carpet I wasn’t enthusiastic about. Adding area rugs on carpet that I didn’t love saved me in so many ways. I was able to really enjoy my spaces more when I could add area rugs that fit my personal style while hiding some rather unappealing carpet at the same time. Even if you don’t have ugly carpet, adding an area rug on top of carpet is a layering technique that some designers suggest. Layering rugs add texture and visual interest even if you have a beautiful carpet under your area rug. It’s something I’ve done in every one of my homes with carpet because I love the way it looks and it’s an easy and affordable way to upgrade your space!

We had really beautiful carpet in the main bedroom in our Florida House that I actually loved and adding an area rug over the carpet gave this space even more character. The carpeting in here was really low pile yet still really soft and plush so I added an area rug that had a similar pile so there wouldn’t be too much variation.

Here’s another example of a bedroom with an area rug layered over carpet. If the question is whether or not it’s stylish to put an area rug over carpet, I think the answer is a solid yes. This is really beautiful. I love the contrast of the blue gray rug over the beige carpet.

Ideas for layering rugs on carpet
Novari Interior Design photo by Natalie Lysaught

This gorgeous, modern space is elevated with this jute braided area rug layered on top of carpet. I’m trying to imagine this space without the rug. I don’t think it would be quite as lovely. The jute rug grounds this space perfectly and brings some warmth that would otherwise be missing.

should you use rugs over carpet? yes. layering rugs on carpet is a good idea
Jessica Forbes

Here’s another great example of rugs on carpet and how much character it brings to the space. At first glance of this room, the eye is immediately drawn to the rug. The geometric pattern and the monochromatic design all anchor this space perfectly.

Do Area Rugs Look Good on Carpet?  

If you are wondering whether area rugs look good over carpet, the answer is yes. If done correctly, layering a rug on top of your carpet can be very aesthetically pleasing. Even if you have a beautiful and expensive wall to wall carpeting, adding an area rug on top of that can add texture and visual interest. This is especially true when layering texture-rich rugs like jute and natural fiber rugs.

Layering an area rug over carpet can also be a great way to add color, pattern, or texture to neutral carpets that may not have the personality you are looking for. A great choice is to go for a bold patterned rug to add interest to a plain carpet.

Where Can You Put Rugs Over Carpet

If you have wall-to-wall carpet in any area of your home you may want to consider adding some area rugs. I love using area rugs not only to hide unsightly carpet but also to anchor spaces and make them feel more defined. So I might use a large area rug in a living room to define that space. The same in bedrooms, dining rooms, a sitting area, and even an entryway. You can also use rugs in carpeted hallways to add more visual interest in additional to giving your hallway a little more durability with rugs.

How to Layer Area Rugs on Carpet

Use Rug Pads to Make Sure the Rug is Solidly in Place

A few tips for layering rugs over carpet. You want to use rug pads. This is the number one tip for layering rugs over carpet. Rug pads are always recommended but they are especially helpful on top of carpet because they will prevent your rug from shifting, rippling, or bunching up creating an eye sore and worse, a tripping hazard. In addition to rug pads there are other products that are available to to keep your rugs flat on top of carpet. Rug tape is another product that you can use to help your rug stay flat on the ground.

Use Complementary Colors

You want to make sure that the rug and carpet colors look good together. Even though you may be trying to hide your carpet completely, it’s a good idea to get an area rug that has complementary colors to your carpet so that there isn’t a huge contrast as that can be visually distracting. If you have beige carpet, consider a rug that has some beige in it. If you have blue carpeting and you’d like to lighten it up, you can add a light rug that has some blue it. Additionally, adding rugs that are heavily textured like jute or other woven rugs creates a lot of visual interest and go with many different carpet colors and styles. 

Consider Scale

Make sure your rug is large enough for your space. You won’t want a 4×6 sized rug floating in the middle of a large carpeted room. If you have an average sized bedroom consider at least an 8×10 sized rug if not larger.

Add Texture

Bold rugs are gorgeous and eye-catching but rugs that are neutral in color but heavy on texture can be just as pleasing to the eye. Consider braided jute, sisal, or wool rugs to add some weight and texture to an otherwise light or soft room.

What are the Pros of Placing Rugs over Carpet?

There are so many great benefits of layering a rug over carpet. Here are the main ones: 

  • It’s an affordable way to add texture and pattern to your space without spending too much money. 
  • You can hide less than desirable or carpet stains easily
  • Rugs are great for high-traffic areas that may result in dirty carpet, allowing you to clean just the area rug instead of the carpeting. They are especially great for playrooms or kid rooms that might suffer from spills or messes.
  • If you purchase quality rugs, they will last for years until you can eventually replace the underlying carpet or move to a different home. 
  • If you are renting a home with carpet that you don’t love, this is an easy and affordable way to add your own style without making any permanent changes. 
  • Layering rugs over carpet adds an extra layer of padding to your floor, giving more comfort and coziness.

Wrapping Up Rugs on Carpet

Whether the pros approve or not, layering plush area rugs over carpet is an excellent solution for renters and homeowners alike. Just keep in mind that you should use proper padding and make sure the colors coordinate, and you will have an affordable, beautiful layered look in no time! With a little bit of creativity and effort, you can turn any living space into an inviting and comfortable atmosphere that feels like home.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *