The Ultimate Rug Shopping Guide

Prepare to be floored. When you’re getting ready to decorate a new room, the most important starting place is right beneath your feet! A rug is a great foundation for designing your space and sets you up to coordinate the whole room — from recliner and side tables to the final throw pillows. Now, don’t worry if you’re shopping for a room that’s already (almost) fully furnished. I’m here to guide you through your selection so you’ll be happy enough to cut a rug—see what I did there?

Happy shopping! If you need me I’ll be practicing my dance moves.

Picking Rugs for Furnished or Unfurnished Rooms

Rugs come in so many different colors, patterns, textures, shapes, and sizes — the options are endless! They add a sense of warmth and comfort, help ground furniture and define a space. Choosing the right rug is key to making your room feel complete. 

Here’s what to think about when rug shopping for a furnished or unfurnished room.

Furnished Rooms: Consider your Lifestyle and Space

The room this rug will belong in is something you may want to consider when choosing your rug. Do you have children? Pets? Is this a high traffic area? A rug that works well for a bedroom can be very different from a rug that is perfect for a dining room. A thicker, plush rug will add that comfort and coziness to your bedroom or living room, while you may want to go a different route for your dining area. You’ll want to go with a flatweave rug which is easier to clean. Also, consider a darker rug or one with a pattern in high traffic areas such as entryways and kitchens.

Unfurnished Rooms: Play with Patterns and Textures

Take a look at your space and ask yourself a handful of questions. What style is your furniture? What colors are used throughout the room? Are there a lot of textures and patterns? What kind of flooring is in place? If your room is full of clean lines, neutral colors, and subtle patterns, you may want to go bold with your rug. One that’s rich in color or has a bold pattern will add some character and dimension to your design! If you’re working with a room that already has a lot of color and pattern, try a neutral rug to avoid any clashing and to soften up the space.

How to Find the Right Size Rug

Before we get too ahead of ourselves, let’s figure out the right size rug for your room. My first piece of advice: Spend just a bit more and get the larger size.

People often buy an area rug that’s too small because, hey, rugs can be expensive! But with Bob’s Discount on rugs, you don’t have to hold back! A few inches makes all the difference between the rug pulling the room together or it feeling off-balance. Consider these helpful pointers for picking the ideal size rug to fit any space.

Living Room

How to arrange an area rug in your living room | Bob's Discount Furniture

Fit the front two legs of each piece on the rug.


How to arrange an area rug in your bedroom | Bob's Discount Furniture

Fit the bed and both nightstands fully on the rug, with a few feet on either side of the bed.

Dining Room

How to arrange an area rug in your dining room | Bob's Discount Furniture

Fit the table and all chairs on the rug with room to pull chairs out without falling off the rug.

How to Find the Right Rug Pile

Let’s clear up one thing first: pig pile is about mayhem, rug pile is about comfort. A low pile rug basically means a slimmer rug with tighter fibers, while high pile means a fluffier rug with longer fibers.

Low pile rugs (generally less than ¼ inch) are great for busier rooms, especially if you have kids in the house. They’re easier to vacuum and their fibers aren’t likely to loosen up and cause any unexpected tumbles. 

High pile rugs (generally ½ to ¾ inch or greater) than are good for accenting areas with lower foot traffic (definitely not a rug to place anywhere pig piles are likely to occur). They’re also a little tougher to vacuum.

If your heart breaks at the thought of choosing between low and high, you can actually choose the middle! Mid pile rugs (generally ¼ inch to ½ inch) are what they sound like: rugs with medium-length fibers and vacuum-friendly density.

Finding the Right Type of Rug

Now that you know the rug size and pile that’s right for your rooms, let’s explore specific types available. Whatever floor you’re searching for, my collection’s got it covered!

Type of Rug

Let’s first dig into five overall types of rugs.


Carved rugs feature pile cut to different lengths to create an appealing pattern. My Summit rug features a hand-carved, tufted design great for a living room, bedroom, or studio apartment.

Summit Area Rug | Bob's Discount Furniture
My Summit rug is hand-carved.

This 5′ x 8′ area rug features a high pile!


Geometric rugs provide a vibrant accent to any floor with their unique designs. The handsome colors and shapes of my Contours rug make it a bestselling customer favorite for bedroom, living room or home office!

Contours Area Rug | Bob's Discount Furniture

This is a 5′ x 7’6″ rug!


Patterned rugs easily enhance a living space. My Archer faux-hide rug makes an animal-friendly fashion-forward statement in any room.

Archer Area Rug | Bob's Discount Furniture

This 5′ x 6’6″ rug features low pile, stain-resistant acrylic material!

Shags and Sherpas

Shag rugs flaunt their long fibers and bring maximum coziness. My Sherpa cream shag rug is ultra-soft and its neutral color complements any decor.

Sherpa Cream Area Rug | Bob's Discount Furniture

This 5′ x 7′ area rug features luxurious high pile and polyester material. Experience walking on a cloud!


My Otis rug demonstrates how sometimes simplicity is best. With its solid earthy brown and beige border, it’s a great finishing touch for your space.

Otis Area Rug | Bob's Discount Furniture

This 5’3″ x 7’7″ area rug features a low pile!

Choosing the Right Style of Rug

Once you’ve chosen a type, thinking about a specific style can help you further focus your search for the perfect rug.


With its geometric pattern and gray, black, and ivory color palette, my Gray Bricks rug is sure to bring a contemporary feel to your room. Hit the bricks and get to the Bob’s nearest you to experience this stylish comfort firsthand!

Add this 5′ x 7’3″ rug to your home!


Nothing says glam like a lush high pile shag rug! My Glitz platinum shag rug fills the room with a warm plush material that complements the living room, dining room, or bedroom sets for extra luxury right at your feet.

Glitz Shag Rug | Bob's Discount Furniture

This 5′ x 8′ rug is eligible for Bob’s Value Express shipping! Bring home a room of glitzy plush.


Traditional designs can bring effortless style to your home. My Pike rug features neutral shades of gray and beige.

Pike Area Rug | Bob's Discount Furniture

This 5′ x 8’ rug features direct shipping from the manufacturer.


My Nile rug brings tranquil, transitional style all the way from the river! You’ll feel a dash of Cairo in your carpet when decorating your home with this understated beauty.

Nile Area Rug | Bob's Discount Furniture

This 5′ x 8′ rug features natural wool low-pile material, and is eligible for Bob’s Value Express shipping!

Visualize the Rug in Your Space

You can sketch out your room, or use my 3D Room Designer to see what your favorite rug looks like in your space before you buy!

Share Your Pictures

Snap a few pictures of your new rug and tag @MyBobs and we might roll out the red carpet for you on my social feed!

About the author / Bob

I consider myself the luckiest spokespuppet ever because I get to talk about the thing I love the most everyday – furniture! Tufted headboards, rustic finishes, the difference between a sofa and a couch (yes, there is a difference)… I could go on and on. Oh, I just love furniture and I’m SO excited that I have this blog to share my passion with you! It may take me a little longer to create posts – have you ever tried typing with clay hands – but I look forward to talking furniture with you!

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