Looking to buy area rugs? Although colour and price are essential factors when shopping for area rugs, the right colour or design at the lowest price does not necessarily represent the best value. A very important consideration that many people forget when their heart is set on those beautiful Persian carpets or exotic Kashmir rugs is the Performance Value; or in other words, a rug’s ability to retain its good looks for a longer period of time.
Fact is; when you buy rugs and install them new, every rug looks beautiful. The colours are bright, the material looks well finished and the fabric looks well woven together. It is only with the test of time and continuous usage that some rugs will outperform others.
Making a Valuable Addition to Your Home Decor
You are planning on buying a new area rug, and are willing to invest a huge chunk of money in to making your home more beautiful, functional and warmer. However, do you really know the performance criteria of the rug in question and what you need to look for in terms of health and safety, durability, and maintenance to ensure that the area rug you buy is really the right one for you? Or do you just consider the design?
Purchasing new area rugs can be a major investment, and it’s a difficult process to determine the colour, style, pile and material that best fits your home and needs. One of the most important and most overlooked considerations in choosing rugs is the quality, and that can be a costly mistake you don’t want to make.
No matter how good the sample rugs looks and feels in a showroom or an online image, you need to be able to visualize how well the rug will hold up once it’s being walked upon in your home. You’ll be relieved to learn there are certain standards to look for when buying rugs and they are not too tough to learn!
Here are a few things that you must consider:
1. The Fibre Used:
Determine the fibre content, descriptive characteristics, and expected performance based on the construction method or the weave pattern used. By comparing the types of fibres available and assessing your needs in terms of traffic in the area and the kind of time you have to maintain and clean the rug, you will be able to make an informed choice.
Natural fibres have become more popular in area rugs today and can look fabulous. However, you must remember that these can be hard to clean and less durable. Sisal, sea grass, jute, and coir are a few natural fibres used in making rugs. Select a tight weave when you buy rugs in an organic material for maximum comfort.
2. Method of Construction:
Check the density and twist of the rugs. The density is the amount of fibre used every square inch. And higher the density, the longer the rug will last. Twist refers to number of times each individual fibre has been turned and again higher the number, better the quality. So buy area rugs with higher figures, even if it is more expensive because it is a better deal in the long run.
3. The Right Material:
Choose material carefully. Nylon rugs are cheap and usually more durable to stains and wear & tear, so these are best in high traffic area. Polyester rugs will be softer and richer in texture and is perfect for bedrooms and home offices. Handmade Kashmir rugs are the most expensive and therefore best for the living area where impressions need to be made.
Soiling depends on fibre properties as well as maintenance. While most rug fibres are manufactured to resist abrasion, yarn deterioration and distortion can occur under abrasive conditions. Wool is resilient and luxurious, but has only moderate resistance to stains. So each fibre has its advantages and disadvantages and its best to look at the criteria most important to you when you buy rugs.
Is It a Good Idea To Buy Rugs Online?
Now the answer to this question depends on many factors. Consumers must know that when they buy area rugs, they should be fully aware of how the rug will wear out and how it will look over time. If you want to buy online because it is far easier to find discount deals at online stores, you must balance the descriptive characteristics of fibre and construction in rugs with the performance criteria required for your specific needs.
Consult reliable dealers who carry dependable brand names. Ask to see the guarantees before you purchase. Don’t fail to look at the manufacturer’s label, which is usually pasted to the back of the rug sample. Here you’ll find most of the information required to make an informed choice. In case you love a beautiful, intricately carved rug that says’ handmade’ but doesn’t come with a manufacturer’s label behind that tells you of the fibre used, construction method and maintenance required, get in touch with a salesperson to find this information for you. Without this information, you usually cannot make the right choice nor can you ascertain the performance criteria in area rugs online.
How to Judge the Performance of Area Rugs Online?
Sadly, it is not easy to predict how well a rug will perform in your home. You might fall in love with the luxurious design of Kashmir rugs but whether they are a real value for money investment or not cannot be decided on looks alone.
So what do you need to check? Always look for the manufacturer’s warranty information when you buy area rugs online; this is the best indication of a product’s true on-the-floor performance record. The warranty will cover a lot of things – resistance to abrasion, moisture, staining, crushing, unravelling and much more.
What makes some rugs look so bad over time?
Some common problems that people face when they take a cheap deal on area rugs online are:
– The rugs look worn out and their appearance cannot be restored to their former glory even after washing and vacuuming. It simply begins to look old and ugly, no longer enhancing a room, but rather making the room look dingy and neglected.
– Matting can occur in small patches where the fibre gets all twisted and looks damaged and this usually happens in high traffic zones where proper maintenance procedures have been neglected and the rug’s built-in performance characteristics were not up to the mark.
– Staining is a very common problem, especially in light colour shades. The carpet will get stained and no matter how you try to remove the ugly marks, your attempts will go to waste. So unless your rug is under warranty you will be stuck with a rug that can no longer be used in ‘visible’ area but will have to be put under furniture.
– Traffic lanes are a serious issue. An average adult exerts three or four times body weight with every step and over a period of time, busy pathways on large rugs can begin to show unsightly signs of wear and tear.
While many people still believe that by buying a thicker, heavier area rug online they are getting a better deal, this is not a reliable way to test the quality when you buy rugs online. Some carpets feel thicker because they use a bulkier yarn that has not been tightly twisted. This technique makes the carpet look and feel more luxurious and durable than reality, and is an easy way to get a fuller-looking carpet cheaper. In fact, the lose twist means the rug is actually inferior in quality and will wear faster.
Don’t just think of the design but also think of the maintenance when you buy rugs. White rugs look spectacular but are very tough to maintain and similarly, Kashmir rugs can also demand a professional cleaning job to keep it looking spiffy for a long time to come.
The best way to buy that perfect rug – do your homework well, find out what materials will best suit your needs and lifestyle, choose a rug that seems like a good fit and then find out if it really offers value for money.
You might also enjoy reading: Re-decorating On a Tight Budget Made Easy
Good Luck Shopping!