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All about Carpet Runners: The What, Why and How

A carpet runner is a popular home accessory that can do many things for your interior design. So, if you’re wondering what it does or how to use this unique kind of rug, then this article has the answers for you!

In this post, we will specifically cover:

  • What is a carpet runner?
  • What are the benefits of using a carpet runner in your home?
  • How do I use it? Fitting, buying, and care.

What is a Carpet Runner?

A carpet runner is a popular home accessory that is typically long and narrow and is used for high-traffic areas. These rugs work perfectly at the foot of stairs and against a bed or in a gallery kitchen. The name carpet “runner” comes from the idea that runners tend to generate a lot of foot traffic. Therefore, a carpet runner is used in an area where you would expect people to be spending a lot of time. In short: A narrow open space with a lot of foot traffic is the perfect place to have a carpet runner.

While some people actually do “run” in hallways and open spaces, the term “runner” is more so alluding to the fact that the rug is placed in highly utilized areas.

Carpet runners are great for a variety of functions in the home, and they also make your space look beautiful.

Benefits of Using a Carpet Runner in Your Home:

A carpet runner will add texture and pattern to your space.

The natural wool fibers and texture provide traction for people walking on it. The runner also absorbs sound well, which means that runners can create an acoustically pleasant environment by absorbing noise– especially over hardwood floors. You can also find carpet runners in various designs and patterns, which can help bring your home some cohesion and style.

A carpet runner will also protect the floor.

Carpet runners can help absorb spills, prevent scratches and scuffs, and keep your floors looking great for years to come. In addition, carpets runners are a cost-effective way of protecting hardwood or other delicate surfaces from damages like dents that can be created from the weight of furniture.

A carpet runner is great if you have pets!

My kitchen has french doors that lead into my backyard. My dog loves to run in and out of the house, and I noticed that the runway from my kitchen to the outside was getting messy. I would especially dread rainy days because I could never seem to keep my kitchen floor clean. I finally found a carper runner that looked like the design and style of my house, so I placed it in my kitchen to bring in some cohesion.

Sure enough, I saw a huge improvement in the mess brought in and out of the house. And now, every time the rug gets messy, I pop it into the washer and dryer, and it looks like brand new. If my kitchen floors could talk, I am sure they would thank me!

Carpet Runners help direct the flow of traffic

There is a reason why a red carpet or runway is used to guide celebrities and VIP groups to a specific area. However, in your home– you’re the real MVP.

Long narrow rugs are a great way to direct traffic flow. What often happens is that people subconsciously follow the line of your carpet runner, and this helps to keep hallways from becoming cluttered with shoes, bags, etc. You’d be surprised how you can tidy up a messy home with some intentional placement of furniture. It is super easy to do and very effective!

On the other hand, you can also use a rug to direct people away from a specific area. Our brains are tricked into thinking a long rug means something is at the end, and we are naturally curious and tend to try to figure out what it is. What this means for you, as a homeowner, is that if you have an area of your house where people tend to be congregating, such as in front of the TV or sitting on the couch- you can use a carpet runner to help direct traffic flow away from those areas, so they don’t become overcrowded.

A carpet runner is an easy way to add a pop of color!

The colors used in a home can tell a lot about the energy that the home has or gives off. If you have been looking for ways to give your space some depth and character but don’t know where to start- try adding a rug! Rugs can be the easiest way to create new layers in your home because they will help tie all those colors together.

What’s great about using a carpet runner is that you can easily experiment with different colors to see what works best in your space without having to commit or spend too much money on the design just yet.

How do I use a Carpet Runner: 5 places to decorate with rugs

A rug can help your room feel cozier and bring some warmth to the space. What’s even better is that you don’t have to go out and buy an expensive bedding set or other furniture- all you need are a few accent pieces like lamps, throw pillows, and artwork to bring a place together. When looking to decorate your space with a carpet runner, you may consider placing it:

In the Kitchen!

Place your carpet runner between your sink and kitchen island. This will allow your feet to have some comfort when cooking or completing errands in the kitchen. Furthermore, the runner will help protect your kitchen flooring, which is essential for your property value.

On your Stairs!

Stair Runner

The most common place to see a carpet runner is on a staircase. However, a narrow and removable carpet on a staircase is called a “stair runner.” A stair runner is a great way to provide some traction and to protect your hardwood floors from scratches. Furthermore, the most common slips, slides, and falls happen on a staircase.

Therefore, a stair runner is not just a great decoration, but it can also be essential for the health and safety of members in your home. When exploring options for your new rug, you may want to remember that Remodelista recommends an “indoor/outdoor polypropylene [rug] that looks like sisal” as it is a very popular, durable, and an easy to clean option for your stairs.

In front of your Bathtub!

A carpet runner in the bathroom is a great idea because it will help keep water off the floor, which can be very dangerous to slip on. What’s more, this rug provides you with easy access if you need to reach for something like toilet paper or a towel. Depending on your bathroom design, you can use the runner to line up with your shower and toilet. This is a great way to add character to your bathroom while reducing any slipping hazards.

In your Living Room!

You can use a rug in your living room to define different areas of space that you use to entertain guests, watch TV, and eat dinner. What’s more, it will help keep your flooring looking great for longer because there are not as many feet walking back and forth on top of it all day long.

In Halls and Entranceways

You can use runners in an entryway or hall to make the area appear larger and more welcoming. Your entrance and hallway are some of the most heavily walked-on areas of your home. Therefore, protecting a hallway is essential to protect flooring, especially wood flooring.

Adding runners within hallways may help separate private spaces from common areas like bedrooms.

Shop Runners:

We believe a few carpet runners are made from the best materials and are better than other options. For example:

Multi-Functional
nuLOOM Misty Shades Deedra Runner Rug, 2' 5" x 9' 5", Grey
4.5

You will not find a genuine, handmade rug of Turkish origin at this price anywhere! The Misty Shades Deedra runner rug will add a touch of style and comfort to your home. Made from 100% polypropylene, this machine-made jute rug is durable and easy to clean. The silky texture is soft underfoot, making it perfect for any room in the house. This rug measures 5 feet wide by 8 feet long with a 0.25-inch pile height.

We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
Best Stair Runner
Stair Runner - Luxury Bergama Collection (Blue)
5.0
$189.00

The Kashan Collection is a stunning collection of stair runners featuring traditional Turkish patterns woven into plush, durable stain-resistant rug fabric. The fibers in these durable Turkish stair runners are specially treated for added resistance to mildew, abrasion, and sunlight. Each stair runner is constructed of heat-set Olefin with a luxurious pile height of 10 mm and width of 26 inches.

We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
05/25/2022 03:26 am GMT
Easy to Clean
RUGGABLE Machine Washable Runner Rug - Zareen Steel Blue
4.5
$169.00

I have this Ruggable runner in my kitchen! My dogs run all over it every day and yet it still looks brand new. The best part is that this runner is completely washable, which is a plus for me because my dog sheds all the time. What's more, this runner has so many great reviews on Amazon!

We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
05/25/2022 05:22 am GMT

Why I love Carpet Runners:

In my household, I use carpet runners as a cost-effective way to bring cohesion to a space, especially if I don’t want to invest in area rugs. While I love area rugs and have quite a few, some spaces only need a slight uplift. Carpet runners are basically rugs that help fit the width and diameter of a hard-to-style space. Generally speaking, a standard runner size is between 2 and 3 feet wide and can range from 6 to 14 feet. I also use runners because it helps protect my wood floors and helps bring out the character and charm of my interior design style.


What do you think? Do you have recommendations on the best material for a runner? Do you prefer modern designs or a specific width of size? If so, share your feedback and/or comments below!

Lastly, if this post was helpful for you or someone who needs help with their carpet runner, please give us a like or share it on social media. Your support makes us smile – Thank you!

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