Once seen only in lofts or small apartments, today’s modern homes often have open layouts with living and dining areas included in one big space.

Often people thought mainly of verticals, such as shelves and screens, to separate these areas but now, more and more, people are finding that horizontal surfaces, such as rugs, are just as effective for dividing spaces and creating visual interest.

Of course, it doesn’t have to be only for an open plan; many will use the rugs to differentiate an office area or study or library. They can also be quite effective if one room needs to perform several functions: guest bedroom, kids’ playroom or office because you can easily remove, replace and re-arrange the surfaces.

How do I place them?

●Get the right size. The biggest mistake people make with scatter rugs is to buy the wrong size; if it’s too small it will distort the room’s scale and size and the furniture will almost seem like it’s floating. If it’s too large, it will just overwhelm the area.

First, determine where you want one space to end and another to start. Take measurements if you need to. The carpet should be large enough that the front legs of chairs and sofa anchor it, but not so large that it extends beyond 18 inches of the space that you want to end.

Also, consider

●Positioning. You want to be sure it’s balanced with the room. One way is to place it with the longest piece of furniture to keep the scale.
●Color. Choose rugs that coordinate well with the room’s other hues. No one is saying every surface needs to be a perfect match but, on the other hand, one of the purposes of these rugs is to unify an area.

What about safety?

By following some easy suggestions, you’ll eliminate any concerns over tripping and falling.

●Make sure they are firmly anchored by the furniture and, if necessary, use double-sided tape to hold them down.
●Examine them frequently for curled up edges.
●Use rubber backing and padding to keep it in place.

For more information, visit the Specialty Flooring showroom in Ridgeland, SC, and request a free estimate.