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Rugs blog at Rugs To My Door

Rugs blog featuring area rugs including contemporary rugs, modern rugs, traditional rugs, casual rugs, eco friendly rugs, family friendly rugs, floor rugs and even rug pads. Check our rugs blog often since it is updated daily.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Shag Rugs: Making a Big Comeback

Shag rugs were a staple of decorating during the 1970's, but like disco, they fell out of fashion during the Reagan years. Today, however, shag rugs are becoming a popular alternative to other types of materials and styles – mostly because of its aesthetic appeal.

While we didn't start using shag rugs until about the 1960's, the look of the rugs had been around for a long time. In ancient Greece, the fur of goats was woven into a very lush style of rug known as flokati. You can actually still purchase flokati shag rugs but they are much more expensive.

What we know of as shag rugs actually have a long pile that gives it a shaggy look. Because the excess fibers aren't removed after the material is looped (as it is with most rug types), shag rugs end up having an extra soft and fluffy look.

You can find shag rugs in all shapes and sizes today, so no matter what you plan to do with one there is undoubtedly shag rugs on the market that will fit your needs. Because of their appearance and softness, they are particularly nice in bedrooms. Couples will find that they add a romantic touch to their bedrooms while children will love snugging on them while they are playing. Plus, shag rugs make for a softer landing during falls.

When shopping for shag rugs, you need to realize that anything considered “retro” is going to be a little more expensive, especially if you want good quality. There is a difference in quality based on price, so be prepared to spend a little extra so you'll have a product that is going to last for years. Remember never to clean it with an upright vacuum because these can damage the pile. This might be a good reason to choose shag rugs made from wool since that material naturally repels dirt and would require less cleaning.

View our selection of shag rugs here.

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The Benefits of Kitchen Rugs

Kitchen rugs have become not only a nice decorating touch but, in some cases, even a necessity. Of course, not everyone thinks about having kitchen rugs – the family room or foyer, yes – the kitchen, not as much.

One good reason to use kitchen rugs is to liven up the décor of the room. Although your family probably spends a lot of time in the kitchen, it's probably not the most attractive area in the home (unless you've done some recent remodeling). The flooring is typically linoleum which is hard and cold but fairly easy to maintain. Kitchen rugs, however, can break up the monotony of the flooring and add a burst of color.

Another good reason to add kitchen rugs is safety. Linoleum can be extremely slick, especially after something has been spilled on it. Using a few randomly placed kitchen rugs with appropriate rug pads can help prevent falls and injuries.

Before you purchase kitchen rugs, you need to keep a few things in mind. The most important is to look for kitchen rugs which will be easy to clean and that aren't easily damaged. Sisal rugs, for example, are a bad choice because they do poorly when exposed to moisture, such as spilled water. Woven rugs can be a better choice, because they are more resistant to spills and other types of kitchen-related damage.

Kitchen rugs should also be durable since they will see a lot of foot traffic in their lives. Wool or cotton choices are the best since they are both known for longevity. Adding quality rug pads under the kitchen rugs is another way to help them last longer.

Another good idea for kitchen rugs are bamboo rugs. Bamboo rugs are good for both indoor and outdoor conditions meaning they can stand up a lot of abuse and still look beautiful. This is exactly what you want in your kitchen rugs. Plus, bamboo rugs come in a wide variety of styles and colors so they can be practical and attractive.

Click here to view our selection of kitchen rugs.

Sisal Rugs & The Environment

Sisal rugs are made from sisal, a tough fiber that is most commonly used to make rope and twine. The plants are grown in a number of locations around the world, such as Tanzania, Kenya, and China. However, Brazil is the larger producer of the material used to make sisal rugs.

In addition to sisal rugs, these plant fibers are also being used in a wide variety of other products, including cat scratching posts, car parts, slippers, and even wall coverings. Sisal has also begun being used as a replacement for carcinogenic asbestos. The reason sisal rugs and this other products have begun popping up is that sisal is a relatively environmentally-friendly crop to grow. That's because no chemical fertilizers or pesticides are used when it's being grown. Of course, both types of chemicals can cause long-term damage to the environment and, in some cases, to human health.

To prevent the growth of weeds which may steal valuable nutrients away from the sisal plants, some herbicides are used on the farms where the plants are grown. However, more and more of the weeding is being done by hand so that even the use of these chemicals to produce sisal rugs can be eliminated.

Clearly, sisal rugs are a good choice for environmentally-conscious consumers, but there is another good reason to choose them. Because the sisal fibers do not build up static electricity or dust deposits as some materials do, regular maintenance of sisal rugs involves only ordinary vacuuming. Stains can also be removed from sisal rugs, but you'll need to use a commercially available dry cleaning powder to take care of that.

On the down side, sisal rugs do not do well when exposed to lots of moisture, so keep them out of areas where spills are likely or where they may be affected by precipitation. Make sure to fasten sisal rugs securely, particularly in high humidity areas because these conditions can cause the rugs to expand and contract if they are not fastened properly.

View our selection of sisal rugs.

Tips About Rug Runners

Not everyone wants to cover large sections of their home with area rugs. In some cases, they just want a rug to decorate a small area. For these families, rug runners might be an ideal choice.

Rug runners are a very popular choice with consumers. They represent one of the most popular rug shapes and can be found in millions of homes around the world. However, rug runners weren't always just thought of as a part of decorating. In Persian homes, rug runners were placed on the floors and used for seating.

While we no longer use rug runners for this purpose, the basic shape of the rugs has not changed in all of these years. Basically, rug runners are narrow and long. On average, rug runners are no more than three feet wide while they can be as much as 20 feet long.

The unusual shape of rug runners makes them ideal for being placed on stairways, in hallways, in some types of kitchens, and in entryways. Because these are often high traffic areas, rug runners should always be used with rug pads to prevent slipping and to minimize wear and tear.

Because rug runners do tend to be used in high traffic areas, you need to choose fabrics that are durable and easy to clean. Cotton and wool might be the two best choices. In terms of design, you'll find countless styles available but you'll want to pick something which will fit into your overall scheme. For example, if you want your home to feel warm and cozy, you shouldn't choose bright colored rug runners for the downstairs hallway.

As mentioned earlier, you can use rug runners on staircases. This might be a nice touch if you have old, wooden stairs which are not visually appealing. However, if you do use rug runners in this way, you should invest in the tools necessary to secure them to the stairs. While slipping rugs can be dangerous anywhere in your home, slipping rug runners on the stairs can lead to serious injuries for your family.

View our selection or rug runners.

Rug Pads & Their Benefits

Many people spend hundreds of dollars to purchase beautiful rugs for their home, but balk at the idea of spending a little extra to invest in rug pads to protect their investment. There are a number of reasons why rug pads should always be used in your home.

When rugs are placed directly on floors, it's easy for moisture to collect under them and to get trapped. That moisture, as you may already know, is going to cause mildew and even mold. Both can damage your rug beyond repair and mold can pose a health threat to your family. Rug pads, on the other hand, raise the rug off the floor and this lets air move under it enough to prevent this problem.

Another reason to invest in rug pads has to do with wear and tear. You may not know this, but when you walk on an unprotected rug, its bottom surface is being rubbed against the floor and that is causing damage. Over time, this damage is what ruins most rugs, particularly in high traffic areas. Rugs pads protect the underside of your rugs and stop that destructive friction from occurring.

If sound is an issue in your home, then thick rug pads offer another important benefit: they reduce noise. The sound of foot traffic is absorbed by the rugs pads and prevented from traveling through the rest of your home. This might especially be important in nurseries, entry ways, and upper levels of the home.

Finally, rug pads can also increase the safety of your home. Rugs on certain types of floors have a tendency to wrinkle or slip which can lead to serious falls, especially among children who are often moving fast. Rug pads stop both wrinkling and slipping so you don't have to worry about accidental rug-related falls anymore.

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