Furniture Versus Area Rugs – Where to Place Your Pieces

Hello all! I hope your week is going well and that you have a decor project or two lined up for the weekend! In last week’s blog post I shared tips for buying area rugs for the various spaces around your home and included some ideas for where to place the rugs relative to furniture in the bedroom and dining room. This week I want to share ideas for furniture placement versus area rugs in the living room. The same ideas and tips will work for area rugs in your family room as well.

If you have a large living room, choose an area rug that provides a margin between it and the walls (10”-20” is ideal). In this instance you are able to place all elements fully on the rug to anchor the space and create a more intimate, pulled together look and feel.

Photo Courtesy of Ryan Doka

Photo Courtesy of Ryan Doka

If your living room is on the smaller side, buy an area rug that is slightly smaller in scale to make the space appear larger and more spacious. You can then create a cohesive, pulled together look by placing just the front legs of the sofa(s) on the rug, ensuring they overlap the rug by a half to two-thirds the depth of the seating. If you have chairs, the front legs of the chairs should sit on the rug as well and if space allows place the chairs on the diagonal (a look I love! It adds visual texture to the space and makes it feel a bit more casual and comfortable). You would then place the coffee table fully on the area rug between seating to create a comfortable conversation area.

Photo Courtesy of Roberto Nickson

Photo Courtesy of Roberto Nickson

If you have a narrow space, you can opt for a smaller area rug in the room. To avoid making the rug look like it’s ‘floating’, buy an area rug based on the interior dimensions of the seating area. Place the rug so it is an equal distance to each piece of furniture and place the furniture such that none of the legs is sitting on the rug. You then complete the look by centering the coffee table on the rug.


Enjoy laying out your space and keep moving the pieces until you have that perfectly comfortable space for relaxation and entertaining.

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