How to Pick an Area Rug

Shopping for your next grandinroad area rug is going to be a lot easier if you know some of the basics.
Let’s take a look at the attributes and benefits of Performance Rugs and Natural Fiber Rugs. We’ll also do a quick rundown of rug construction types and classic rug styles.


Easy-care Performance Rugs: Overview

  • Durability, and colorfast
  • Ideal for kids, dining, pets, messy friends
  • Life span: average about 5 years, with regular professional cleaning; ideal if you plan to change your look regularly, or simply want to save money


Acrylic or Nylon Rugs:

  • Most durable and expensive synthetic fiber (nylon is the most durable)
  • Lower cost than wool
  • The most resilient (least prone to crushing underfoot) synthetic fiber
  • Colorfast performance, too
  • Tends to require more regular cleaning
  • Life span: average about 5 years, with regular professional cleaning; ideal if you plan to change your look and want to save money


Polypropylene Rugs:

  • Less expensive than nylon or wool
  • Called “performance rugs” for indoor/outdoor high-traffic use
  • Fade resistant
  • Staining rare; cleans well
  • Resistance to moisture, mildew, water damage, staining, pilling, shedding and static
  • Treated with chemicals to become stain resistant (except to oil-based stains)
  • Lower resiliency of fibers, so keep fibers gently brushed
  • Must be kept away from high heat sources and high sun windows
  • Life span: average about 5 years, with regular professional cleaning. Ideal if you plan to   update your look regularly; save money, yet still get a good look and durability


Polyester Rugs:

  • Least expensive rug choice
  • Brilliant colors
  • Performance points: very resistant to stains and fading
  • Not as resilient as natural wool, so prone to crushing, like polypropylene rugs
  • Not as resilient to heavy foot traffic (crushing) as wool is– may crush and mat
  • Can be prone to dullness, and showing some wear and tear
  • Life span: average about 5 years, with regular professional cleaning. Ideal if you plan to change your look regularly, want it for a low-traffic room, or have chosen a stricter makeover budget

Natural Fiber Rugs: Overview

  • Environmentally friendly
  • Organic textures and colors
  • Good level of durability and softness
  • Easy to clean


Wool Rugs:

  • Natural “spiral” structure of fibers keeps wool fibers from crushing down, so they are lastingly resilient under heavy foot traffic and heavy furniture
  • Natural, effective noise insulators
  • Typical wool rug takes about 3 to 4 months to weave, so it will cost more
  • Most commonly woven from woolens (yarn of short wool fibers, for exceptional softness)
  • Yarns hand-woven with natural materials (not created with chemicals)
  • Smooth surface feels softer and more luxurious than synthetic rugs
  • Kinder to the environment
  • Flame resistant
  • Easy to clean, and can look good longer between cleanings even if dusty or soiled due to the pocketed fiber structure of wool
  • Life span: average 50 years, or even longer with proper care



Jute & Sisal Rugs:

  • Often hand-woven out of natural, long jute fibers or sisal leaf fibers
  • Organic, textured look
  • Environmentally-friendly; made from a renewable resource
  • Coloring and natural look works with many kinds of décor
  • Naturally durable
  • Also ideal for layering under colorful flatweave rugs
  • Easy care: just vacuum
  • Life span: in low-traffic areas, jute rugs can last for years. Durable sisal rugs are also stain-resistant and long-wearing in high traffic areas

Common rug style and construction options:
  • Flatweave. They’re often reversible, and an easy choice under dining room furniture
  • High-low. A textural look with plush and low-cut areas forming a pattern
  • High pile. A very plush, soft feeling and a luxurious look
  • Shag. A bold texture give shag rugs a modern, retro, or fun and funky look
  • Kilim. A pile-less, flatweave rug with different colored wefts and colorful knotted warp yarns interwoven to create rich geometric and floral patterning
  • Tulu rugs. The unique, extra-weft weaving process that results in a rug noted for its fluffier, cozier, shaggy pile look
  • Hand-knotted. The tufts and loops are knotted by hand, a very time-intensive process undertaken by skilled, trained artisans for lasting beauty and durability. Hand-knotted rugs shed very little because they can go through a more extensive washing process that eliminates most loose fibers as part of their creation; hand-knotting creates distinct, one-of-a-kind looks that are prized
  • Tufted or Hand-tufted. Tufted cut pile has no loops, and is created without tying knots; easy to make, it takes less time to make, and are thus less costly than hand-knotted rugs; can shed more than hand-knotted rugs (tufts are attached using latex, which also adds cushioning). Shuttle equipment may be used during the hand-tufting process
  • Machine-made. High tech machines create precision-crafted designs and rich patterns
  • Cut pile. A uniquely plush surface
  • Cut loops. Loops are trimmed by hand or by machine to create a lower even surface
  • Vintage-look. The “over-dyed” process involves repurposing an actual vintage rug with updated coloring or refreshed look. New dye machine-done weaving processes can also create brand-new rugs that look aged or distressed
  • Hand hooked. Traditional hooked rugs having a loop construction

Now that you know the type of rug you want, we have some easy tips that can help you pick the Right Size for your space. Ready to shop? Shop all Grandin Road area rugs.

  1. I am interested in an area rug in about a 24×30″ approx. size. Do you have a filter whereby I can shop for rugs by size?
    We would favor the color green to be included in the pattern.


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