4 Things to Consider When Choosing the Best Dining Room Rug

Lauren Murphy
Written by Lauren Murphy
Updated January 10, 2022
open concept luxury kitchen and dining area
Photo: bmak/ Adobe Stock

The right area rug has a major impact

Get quotes from up to 3 pros!
Enter a zip below and get matched to top-rated pros near you.

Rugs instantly add warmth and visual interest wherever you place them—especially when placed perfectly underneath your dining table. Here’s what to consider while you shop for the best dining room rug for your space.

1. Size

beige elegant dining room
Photo: Ursula Page/ Adobe Stock

Size is crucial when it comes to dining table rugs. Choosing a rug that’s too big can make the room feel smaller than it really is, and a rug that’s too small can look awkward under the table and even get caught under dining chairs, which could lead to a nasty spill.

To find the right rug for your dining room, measure the room and your dining space. Add your table leaf (if you have one) to extend the length of your table, pull out your dining chairs, and measure the length and width of the space that it all takes up. That’s the rug size you need!

2. Shape

round dining table with round rug
Photo: Ursula Page/ Adobe Stock

In general, you should find a rug that matches the shape of your dining table. So if you have a rectangular dining table, opt for a rectangular rug to place underneath it. The same rule goes for round dining room tables. Rugs that match the dining set make the room look more symmetrical and pleasing to the eye.

3. Material

green dining room with blue rug
Photo: pics721/ Adobe Stock

Between family meals and occasional dinner parties with friends, dining rooms get a lot of love (and see a lot of spills). Choose a rug material that’s durable and easy to clean, so you won’t have a panic attack the next time your kids accidentally knock over their plate or toss uneaten scraps to Fido. When it’s looking a little worse for the wear, clean your area rug thoroughly or hire a professional rug cleaner near you.

Avoid rugs made from delicate materials like silk or cotton and opt for ones made from easy-to-clean synthetic fibers or wool. For a foolproof option, choose a rug designed for both indoor and outdoor use that can stand up to dirt and heavy use.

Whatever type of rug material you land on, make sure it’s flat or low-pile. High-pile rugs (ones with long fibers) make great hiding places for errant crumbs and food scraps, which makes them tough to clean.

4. Color and Pattern

beige dining room with blue rug
Photo: Javani LLC/ Adobe Stock

Dining room rugs pull the space together and make it feel cohesive. Depending on the color and pattern of the rug you choose, it can make your dining room feel cozy, elegant, vintage, or modern. While there are several factors that make a dining room rug look right for your space, personal preference is the most important one. Choose an area rug that matches your decor style and makes you smile whenever you catch a glimpse of it.

While you’re shopping for a dining room rug, consider choosing a darker color instead of a lighter neutral. Lighter rugs are versatile, but they can get stained easily, especially in a dining room with heavy foot traffic and messy meals. A darker or multicolor rug masks stains and cleans easily. 

Typically, you’ll choose between a traditional, transitional, or modern rug style. Traditional rugs come in a variety of colors, meaning you can easily match them to the decor in the rest of your home. Transitional rugs blend traditional and modern designs and tend to have more bold designs, though not as bold as the designs in modern or contemporary rugs.

Need professional help with your project?
Get quotes from top-rated pros.