Learn From Vern: Area Rugs

HGTV Star judge Vern Yip shares his best shopping, sizing and arranging tips with HGTV Magazine.

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Area Rugs 101

A good rule of thumb when deciding where to put a rug: Make sure at least the front two legs of each piece of furniture in the space sit on the rug. Otherwise it will look like it’s floating. Alix Soubiran Fakir 5' x 8' wool rug, $539, luluandgeorgia.com

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Abstract Art

To figure out your ideal rug size, measure the room’s width and length, then subtract two to three feet from each dimension. The result is what you should aim for. Keno Palitra Multi 5' x 8' polyester rug, $289, rugsusa.com

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Invest in Quality

Nothing beats a wool rug. Yes, it’s the most expensive kind, but it feels the softest, has the richest colors and wears the best. If wool is out of your price range, try nylon or a synthetic blend for a similar look that’s just as durable. Gala Thistle 5' x 8' wool rug, $865, companyc.com

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Go Green

Natural materials such as jute and seagrass are affordable and go with any color scheme. Just remember, they look casual and can feel scratchy. A wool or nylon rug will be kinder to your feet. HGTV HOME Ethos 5' x 7'9\" nylon rug in green, $399, shawfloors.com for stores

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Twice As Nice

A natural-fiber rug is great for layering. Put a smaller patterned rug on top. Design by Conran 5' x 8' jute rug with cotton border, $215, jcp.com

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Fringe Benefits

Flat-woven kilim and dhurrie rugs, which are usually made of cotton or wool, are a fun way to add pattern to a room. But because they’re thin, they don’t hold up as well as rugs with a pile. Save them for low-traffic areas, or layer one over a sturdier rug. Indigo Geo 5' x 8' cotton dhurrie, $199, westelm.com

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Pink Polka Dots

This wallet-friendly rug is great in a girl’s room, but it will make a statement with its splash of color anywhere in the home. Magical Thinking Giant Dot 5' x 7' cotton rug, $89, urbanoutfitters.com

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The Perfect Fit

Standard rug sizes range from 3 feet by 5 feet to 9 feet by 12 feet. If you have a larger or oddly shaped room, consider getting carpet cut to size and bound. I did that in my kids’ playroom and paid hundreds less than I would for a rug in that size. Mayflower 5' x 7'6\" polypropylene rug, $329, horchow.com

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No-Slip Staying Power

Don’t forget a rug pad! It will prolong the life of your rug and the floor underneath. I like polypropylene pads, which are cheap and stand up to foot traffic. Poire 5' x 7'6\" polypropylene rug, $339, homedecorators.com

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Classic Style Underfoot

The colors are neutral. The pattern is simple. Use this versatile rug at will. Moroccan Shag 5' x 8' wool rug in ivory, $300, worldmarket.com

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Step Into a Garden

This plush wool rug is thick enough to confuse your feet into thinking they're actually walking amongst the flowers. Gloria’s Garden 5' x 7' wool rug, $598, anthropologie.com

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Casual Comfort

This cotton-wool blend feels soft to the touch, but the pattern lends itself to casual or dressed-up rooms alike. 88-Key 5' x 8' cotton and wool rug, $299, landofnod.com

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