Hilary Farr Shares Her Best Advice For Buying A New Rug

If you're trying to decide what kind of rug is best for your home or space, Hilary Farr has some of the best tips for choosing the perfect piece. Made famous as co-host of HGTV's ever-popular "Love It or List It," Farr has decades of interior design expertise. Since 2008, the British-Canadian designer has helped transform clients' homes from old and shabby to chic and convivial. The international design star has even developed her own area rug line, which showcases a variety of geometric and nature-inspired patterns, as seen on Rugs Done Right

What should you consider when purchasing a new rug? Farr has said not to be afraid to completely cover an area. When selecting the right rug, generously fill a room with a piece that is both rich and inviting while staying within budget. Additionally, large area rugs can be welcoming for guests or children to sit and play with games (or toys) while avoiding any bare spaces.

From animal furs to woven wool, rugs have evolved over the years, as they continue to be a vital element of daily domestic life. Since ancient times, rugs have been utilized as added insulation for all kinds of dwellings. The oldest surviving rug is known as the Pzyryk Carpet, dating back around the 4th to 3rd centuries B.C., which features superior colors and fibers, according to Matt Camron Rugs & Tapestries. With so many styles and materials, there are numerous types of rugs to choose from. 

Types of indoor rug materials

For exceptional warmth and durability, wool may be considered one of the best natural fibers to embody a rug, especially during colder months, per Creative Floors. Besides being stain-resistant, the fibers often remain intact with ample foot traffic and offer a variety of gorgeous patterns and colors. From nylon to chenille, you might find various other soft yet resilient rug materials for indoor use. Often found in her Kaleen Rugs line, design pro Hillary Farr would agree that a polyester/chenille combo is the perfect blend. While polyester is water-resistant, chenille provides a glossy, silky texture, which is often made from various materials like cotton, olefin, rayon, silk, or wool.

Additionally, keep things simple and functional while showcasing tactile fabrics. If you have a lot of kids or people in the house, you might want to resist implementing a lavish silk rug from India that you don't want to have to clean often or let get worn out easily. Nylon is also a high-performance material made to last as an area rug or runner. For a softer feel, choose a soft nylon piece. Handmade or machine-made? Another thing to consider is how your rug was made. Handmade may be more expensive, but is more authentic and could last a lifetime, while machine-made pieces may endure up to only twenty years, depending on the material.

Exterior rug options to consider

Bring the indoors out. If you have a patio or terrace and want to create a cozy, inviting space either for yourself or for entertaining, you might consider a stylish, decorative rug. In an area that typically receives more barefoot and/or shoe traffic, you might want something more dependable and hard-wearing. Some of the best-loved outdoor patio rugs are made from synthetic materials like polyester, nylon, jute, and sisal, with one of the most prevalent being polypropylene, also known as olefin. Farr is on board with incorporating enduring, unobtrusive materials as with her designer 100% polyester and polypropylene area rugs for outdoor patio and/or porch use. Made of plastic fibers, polypropylene is commonly known in the production of various sportswear and wallpaper, including rope. You might even layer up some smaller accent rugs to add a relaxed, layered vibe, as pictured above.

All of these different kinds of rug materials may vary in designs and textures yet are well suited for damp/humid weather, including being highly fade and stain-resistant, per Wayfair. Depending on where you live, humid tropical, subtropical, or temperate, consider which material might best fit your outdoor space needs when buying a new rug.