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5 Creative Ways to Layer Area Rugs

5 Creative Ways to Layer Area Rugs

Two rugs caught your eye? Get them both! Layering rugs is a trendy technique that will add visual interest to any space. You can blend colors and textures for a unique design all your own.

Slide a Large Area Rug Beneath a Small One for a Bordered Effect

Smaller blue striped rug layered on a larger jute rug

You can soften the appearance of layered rugs with two that are arranged to look like they belong together. Placing a small, striking area rug on top of a large one of the same shape gives you a unique personalized design. Maintain a foot-wide border of the base rug peeking out so the style looks expertly created.


Using a less-expensive base rug to cover most of your floor is a great money-saving option. Then you can splurge on a smaller rug that sits on top and garners more attention.


Mix Layered Rug Patterns

Multicolored geometric area rug layered over an ivory and charcoal grid patterned rug

If you’re ready to make a bold move, try mixing patterns with your layered rugs. You can layer several patterned rugs for a fun and eclectic twist that makes a statement without overwhelming the space. Choose rugs within the same color palette so the design appears deliberate. You can prevent the two from competing by making sure one pattern is bigger than the other.


An area rug with large black-and-white stripes will add a modern touch to a smaller oriental rug with fine, intricate details. Another option is to choose two rugs with the same pattern, one neutral and one colorful, for a dimensional look. Check out our Area Rug Style guide for more style ideas. This is your chance to bring out your inner designer — have fun with it!


Combine Rug Textures for Unique Style

Faux fur rug layered over a gray jute rug in a living room

Keep your layered rugs from competing for attention by choosing two with opposing textures to balance each other out. Area rugs made with natural materials, like seagrass, sisal, or jute, feature neutral shades with a low pile, so one would work well as a base for your layered-rug look.


The rug you add on top should be colorful or patterned with a high pile so it contrasts well with your base rug. Try layering a faux cowhide rug over a jute base for an interesting visual that adds dimension to your room. An arrangement like this could even serve as a focal point.


Anchor Furniture With a Small Accent Rug

Gray faux fur accent rug, layered on a gray patterned rug. Coffee is placed on the accent rug.

A tiny accent rug layered over a giant area rug can look strange by itself. But if your accent rug is laying the foundation for a focal point, it makes an eye-catching statement. Try a faux fur rug under your coffee table to add cozy dimension and define the space.


You could also use an accent rug to section off a conversation area from the rest of the room. Accent rugs are stunning when they differ in style and shape from the base rug. If your base rug has low pile, an odd-shaped shag accent will pack a punch.


Layer an Area Rug Over Wall-To-Wall Carpet

White a gray patterned shag rug layered on gray carpet Image Provided by G&S Construction Design

Just because your room has wall-to-wall carpet doesn’t mean you have to forgo an area rug. Layering a rug over carpet gives your room a personal touch when you can’t change the existing flooring. Plus, it’s a great way to cover unsightly stains until you can replace the carpet.


The biggest concern with a rug on carpet is that it can ripple and bunch. You can solve that problem by anchoring your area rug under a piece of furniture like your couch or armchair. A carpet-to-carpet rug pad can also help with the bunching conundrum. It grips both the carpet underneath and the rug on top so your area rug always stays in place.

Watch How to Layer Rugs in 5 Easy Steps