It is a truth universally known that the easiest and the most beautiful way to decorate any space is a rug. Yes, we’re biased because we don’t just make rugs; we eat, sleep, and live them. However, the fact still remains. Carpets bring alive a home. That’s why they are the most common home décor accessory.
That said, they require investment and not just in terms of money but also time and effort. This has given rise to a lot of rug myths and untruths. On top of it, carpet manufacturing is a field shrouded in mystery for most people. As a result, rug myths spread from ear to ear without even touching the lips!
Busting all your rug myths once and for all
There are a lot of statements circulating out there about area rugs that people consider factual. Today, we take the time out to debunk the most common of these rug myths.
Rug myth 1: Carpets are just for beautification.
A prevalent misconception about carpets and rugs is that they are for show. Yes, they do accentuate the décor of any space and make it look better. However, area rugs and carpets do serve an actual function. What that function is will differ.
For instance, you can use bright, vibrant Indian rugs to bring warmth to a room. Another is using thick or woolen carpets during winters to take away the chill from marble or tiled floors. There is nothing cosier than sinking your toes in a plush, warm carpet on a chilly January morning.
One more way you can use carpets is to avoid marks, cuffs, and abrasions on expensive wood floors. Or prevent slips and falls on extra shiny and smooth floors because rugs lend friction.
Rug myth 2: Carpets are not meant for summers.
The myth that rugs are useless in the summer arises from a time when most carpets were made of thick wool. That era has long gone. Today, rugs are made from a variety of materials like cotton, bamboo, jute, nylon, polyester, silk and viscose. Or they can be made from a blend of two materials like silk and wool.
The variety not only helps break the monotony of traditional designs, but also to use rugs in any weather. For example, dhurries are a great option during summertime. Similarly, jute and hemp carpets make for an excellent choice when temperatures are high.
Rug myth 3: Natural fibre rugs are hard.
The topic of material brings us to a myth that has grown like weeds after the first rain. Carpets made of natural materials like jute or hemp are rough, hard and scratchy. That is inaccurate.
The texture of the fibre does differ from silk or wool, but that is an inherent quality of the material. It doesn’t make eco-friendly rugs uncomfortable. They are not too coarse to walk on barefoot.
Some natural-fibre carpets like those made with a blend of wool and sisal are super soft and super comfortable. So, if you’ve been thinking about buying one, do so without winking an eye.
Rug myth 4: Rugs should be the last décor element you choose.
We explained this in detail in our guide to choosing the right rug colour for any room. It is a disbelief that carpets should be the last thing you should select when decorating or renovating a room. Rather, the rule of thumb is to begin from the floor up.
A carpet is the very foundation of any space. When you choose it first, you can tie together all the other aspects of the room, like the furniture, knick-knacks, and furnishings. It helps build an organised and aesthetically pleasing effect. Moreover, it is far easier to pick other elements once the rug is in place.
So, always select the carpet first. How do you do that? The colour is a natural starting point. For more tips, swing by here.
Rug myth 5: Slip mats and rug pads are useless.
Most people believe that a rug pad or a slip mat is money squandered because they are not needed. This cannot be further from the truth. Slip mats are necessary for a number of reasons:
- They increase the lifespan of a carpet, sometimes as much as 40%, because they are durable.
- By extending a carpet’s life, they help you save money in the long run.
- They protect both the floor and the carpet by providing positive tension. A slip mat ensures that a rug stays in place. It also absorbs the friction of a footfall. Both work toward protecting the floor and rug.
- In high-traffic areas, they stop carpet knots from loosening. Therefore, they prevent damage to the rug.
- Lastly, rug pads add more comfort to carpets by making them cushier and softer!
Rug myth 6: Carpets are meant just for the drawing or living room.
Another myth that seems to follow rugs everywhere is that they are meant for only specific parts of the home. Let’s put this misapprehension to rest. There is no dearth of carpets available now, from outdoor rugs to rugs for dining areas. The only limitation is your creativity.
Modern rugs can be placed everywhere – in bathrooms, hallways, patios, bedrooms, foyers, and even kitchens. The last has become more popular in open-concept kitchens as they help to delineate sections.
Rug myth 7: Rugs can’t be placed on top of a carpet.
If you think a room that is completely carpeted doesn’t benefit from an area rug, then you’re grossly mistaken. In reality, placing rugs over a carpet in different segments of the room, like under the coffee table or near the reading chair, creates cosier nooks.
And that’s not the only way you can place rugs on top of carpets. Let’s say you have an old carpet that’s handed down as a legacy from generation to generation. Unfortunately, that rug is too small for any room in your new home.
But you still want to use it. A simple trick is to style it over another rug. One example is layering a flatweave on an eco-friendly rug to add a textural feel. Believe us, stacking or layering doesn’t take anything away from the aesthetics. When done correctly, it is a visual marvel.
Rug myth 8: All carpets are made the same way.
Rug weaving is an art and a technique. The tradition of it has been passed down through centuries. So, believing that all carpets are made the same way is unwise. There are many methods like hand-tufting, hand-knotting, flat-weaving, handloom and, of course, machine-made. Each technique has its own pros and cons.
Rug myth 9: More knots mean better-value rug.
Typically, yes, a higher knot density translates into a more valuable rug if it is hand-knotted. But the number of knots is one factor that decides the quality and price of a carpet. The design, the pattern, and the material are some others.
So, you may come across a gorgeous rug with the most intricate, spellbinding pattern that has a low knot density. In such a scenario, the carpet will still be very valuable. Why? Because it is handmade and creating an elaborate pattern in fewer knots is not easy.
Rug myth 10: Cleaning will damage a carpet.
Let’s kill two birds with one stone: carpets don’t need cleaning, and vacuuming rugs will destroy them. First of all, dirt, dust, and debris are everywhere. So, assuming that you don’t need to clean a carpet ever is ill-advised.
Like everything in the house, rugs also catch dirt. Leave them dirty, and their lifespan decreases, and the colours fade. Our advice is to clean your carpet every six months, and that neatly brings us to the next myth.
Cleaning will spoil a carpet. That is not factual. Some carpets can be gently vacuumed every day, depending on the material. Actually, it is often the best way to keep carpets spotless. An additional tip here is to use a rug pad. They support the carpet and help vacuum it more thoroughly.
Some rugs can be swept or brushed. Likewise, you can dab at any spilt liquid with an absorbing cloth or paper. The one thing you should not do with most rugs is to wash them at home.
For details on the correct technique to vacuum a carpet and how to clean different carpet materials, hop over and scroll down to “how to clean an old carpet and make it look new?”
Rug myth 11: Use the same design on all the rugs in one area.
There is a grain of truth to this carpet myth, but only a grain. They don’t need to be of the same design or pattern. You can mix and match to create a unique look. Even contrasting carpets sometimes make for a great décor style. Having said that, all the rugs in one area should complement each other.
The simplest example is a floral rug surrounded by solid-colour rugs. So, lock this myth up tight and let your creativity roam free. Spread rugs of different styles, materials, colours, designs in the same area and build your own aesthetics.
Rug myth 12: Rugs are not child or pet-friendly.
This is one myth that makes us laugh. Nurseries are filled with rugs, and that should tell you something! Carpets are indeed kid-friendly. If you’re worried about spills and spoils, we recommend investing in a rug made from an easy to clean and durable material. Also, darker shades will help hide small stains and debris.
The same logic applies to pets. You don’t even have to think twice before buying a handmade carpet if you have a dog or cat. Go ahead and choose a rug that has your heart. And in case you have pets that shed a lot of hair, look for material that can be brushed and swept. Hand-knotted carpets are a good choice since they are sturdier, and cleaning them is effortless.
Busting more rug myths for you
As a handmade rug manufacturer, we’re intimately aware of the myths that surround rugs and carpets. But when you buy a rug from us, we want you to do it with utmost peace of mind, with no doubts and absolute certainty. To that end, we busted some of the most common misconceptions about carpets.
If you still have questions or niggling worries, drop us a comment, and we’ll answer. In the meantime, brighten your day with some stunning hand-weaved and hand-knotted carpets!