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area rugs


Scandinavian Rugs…

If you have been following home decor trends no doubt you have come across Scandinavian inspired rugs.  Typically they are black and white and with some type of ‘tribal’ pattern.  The shapes and patterns look almost hand drawn. Many of these rugs have a shaggy texture adding to the character of this trend.

Photo credit :

This hand woven rug is a great example of the Scandinavian rugs that are trending now.  These rugs add a bold pop of pattern in a space so for those of your that like a clean and minimal look but worry that it might be boring – this is a perfect option!

Scandinavian rugs are versatile

Scandinavian inspired rugs also work well with industrial style – they are neutral, they add some texture and print into an industrial space plus the ‘hand drawn’ designs work with the imperfect nature of industrial style. The blend of minimal and clean Scandinavian style and the raw material industrial look have created a look known as Scandi-industrial

Photo credit : Kathy Kuo Home

Scandinavian rugs also work well with modern farmhouse – the subtle and neutral designs add visual interest to this farmhouse look –  we used a Scandinavian inspired rug in one of our recent model home designs – we love the subtle and soft pattern in the space.  The mix of textures and patterns in this room make this space interesting and deep.

Shop Scandinavian Rugs…

Love the look of these neutral pattern rugs? So do we! Here are some of our favourite Scandinavian inspired rugs …

This rug is a great find on amazon – we love the black and white motif and the pattern is visually interesting and has a ‘tribal’ inspired feel.

This rug is very similar to the one we used in our recent model home project.  This pattern is very subtle and the cool combination of grey and white is very one trend.

This rug is a great deal on Amazon (8 x 10 for under $300!) – has a bit more contrast with the ivory and charcoal tone and the pattern is so unique -which is why we love it!

More black and white …. the diamond pattern is popular in these Scandinavian rugs and this one has some amazing shaggy textures which brings some texture to the room.

This rug has such a unique pattern (imagine this paired with some reclaimed wood) – it’s like art on the floor!

We love what area rugs can do for a room…don’t you?

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Stripes are a classic and even better they can work with any decor style!  If you have read any of our posts, you know that we love a print and mixing patterns.  So if you are thinking of trying out a pattern in your space consider a stripe – it’s very transitional, it come in all scales and colours, too! You can’t go wrong!  Not sure where to add this classic pattern? We have some ideas for you!

Wall treatment

– whether it’s wall paper or a streamlined paint job – try stripe son the wall.  You can get as big and bold as you like in terms of colour and scale – or opt for a classic neutral. It could fill an entire room or just an accent wall.  We also love to layer our patterns, so don’t be shy to add some art, photography and mirrors over your striped wall.


– this is an easy addition (or subtraction) in a room.  Adding some printed pillows can completely elevate the look of your room.  There’s just something about a pattern that adds a designer look to a space.  Some of the great things about pillows is that they aren’t permanent, the selection is endless and they are affordable!  On a sofa, side chair, bed – they work everywhere!


– this might be an intimidating step for many but trust us!  A stripe furniture piece can really add a WOW factor to a space.  We do recommend sticking with a neutral palette if you are opting for a pattern piece – it’s easier to work with long term as you want to change up your decor.  And for someone that likes neutrals this can add another sophisticated element to your room, mix it with some other patterns and some solid to give it a designer look.


– We love what window coverings can do to a space – from a functional side but also a decor side – sure they block the sunlight (or an unpleasant view) but also add a softness and again, visual interest in a room.  Whether it’s panels or roman blinds – we love them both!  This is a great option for a living space, dining room and a bedroom – we love a stripe window treatment in a kids’ room so timeless and it can grow up with them!

Floor covering

– we love area rugs in any room, they add another layer of softness, they are nice on bare feet,  they pull a room together and of course, it’s another opportunity to add some pattern.  Area rugs can be pricey depending on the size and material you choose, so if you are concerned about budget consider a classic pattern like a stripe.  A stripe area rug is a classic (we have said this a few times, but it’s true!).

Outdoor furniture and accessories

– decorating your outdoor living space is no longer boring! There are so many options for furniture, umbrellas and accessories, too.  We love the look of a stripe in an outdoor space, it’s so fresh and clean! Pillows, umbrellas, cushions and even rugs – it’s up to you!

Stripes are everything – fun, classic, fresh, bold, and also soft – it’s all about the colour tones and what you mix them with this print – you can’t go wrong with bringing stripes into your world…

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“I see cowhide rugs everywhere.  I purchased one but it’s too small for my living room.  How can I use it ?”

Cowhide (real or faux) is a great way to add some natural animal elements to a room and also some texture.  We love how every cowhide is unique – it’s adds a cool and organic element to a room.  But you are right the size can be tricky especially in a larger room.

Try this – it’s actually a great trick for any area rug that you want to use that’s too small…

Layer it!

Yes, that’s right – layer it!  OK let us explain.  The cowhide is going to add a great graphic pop or natural texture to your space.  Underneath the cowhide use another rug in the correct size – in a neutral tone (we highly recommend a rug that is close in tone to the wall to wall floors).  We love the look of another natural textured rug like a sea grass or sisal or recycled leather but it doesn’t have to be.

Here are some examples:

Here the black and white cowhide is layered over a natural sisal – the mix of textures adds an extra element to the room.  Also the black and white pillows add even more visual interest in the space.

Try layering multiple rugs in one room.  Keep the largest one in a neutral and then the medium one is next and lat the smallest.  Feel free to lay them in an off set manner.  They don’t need to be completely centered and perfect. We like the look in this clean and modern space.  The walls being white allow for a ‘busier’ floor.  Notice the cream rug is layered with a black and white stripe and a cow hide.  It adds such a sophisticated feel to the space.

This is also a great way to update a space that has wall to wall carpet

You might think that this technique doesn’t make a difference but it does!  The larger rug pulls the eye out and wide and the smaller rug adds a pop of colour/print so the room still looks big and spacious whereas just having an area rug that’s too small will make the room appear small as well. In order for this to be effective – the largest rug must be of the proper size for the room.

You can also angle the rugs – they don’t have to be straight on and centered. This can work in any room, too!

This is a great way to still use your favourite area rugs even though they are too small!

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It’s officially November and we can all see it, not just on the calendar but outside, too!  The days are shorter, the leaves have fallen off of the trees and those beautiful fall colours have turned to grey….everything is just a little dreary.  So maybe it’s time for a change, a dash of colour and some fun at home.

The easiest way to make a change to your space to liven it up is with colour.  Here are some of favourite (and easy) ideas to add some pop to your decor.

1 – Florals.

This is perfect for anyone non-committal, fresh flowers don’t last for after about 10 days – they will need replacing. Or try some silk flowers, these keep, they are low maintenance and you can bring them out when ever our home needs an extra boost! They look great in bedrooms, bathrooms, on coffee tables and more….

2 – Art.

Such an easy way to add as much or as little colour as you like.  Any style of art piece can have colour from abstract to landscapes – go with what you love.  You can use the colours in that piece as an inspiration for adding even more colour in that room, so not, it’s up to you!

3 – Area rugs.

Think of them as art on the floor.  This is a great way to make a statement in any room.  Mixing colour and pattern can really transform a room.  The options are endless!

4 – Drapery.

A fun way to add colour, pattern and texture to your space.  This can really wake up a neutral space.  Like area rugs – the choices are plentiful…

5 – Small furniture pieces.

Keep your main furniture pieces neutral but try adding an accent chair, side table or stool in a colour.  This is unique and it’s a great way to show off your personality.  We love this kitchen with orange stools – it really adds some fun to a mostly white on white space.

6 – Decor pillows.

This is probably the easiest way to give your room a colourful update.  We love to mix bold colours, patterns and complimentary colours against a neutral sofa or bed.

7 – Accent wall.

If you feel you need a bigger change, consider a painting accent wall in a fun colour or splashy wallpaper.

Colour your world – add a little or a lot …

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“Summer is almost over but I love the look and laid back feel of my rattan furniture.  Is there a way to bring rattan pieces inside so I can keep that summer style all year?”

It is so sad to see summer on it’s way out – no matter how great the summer is it never seems long enough.  Rattan aka wicker furniture definitely has an outdoor air about it but it can definitely be brought indoors.  You definitely want to avoid bringing certain outdoor pieces inside, many are too bulky and don’t “translate” well inside.  If you love rattan than use it indoors and follow these tips.

1.  Mix.

Don’t have an all rattan set like a dining set indoors.  It just looks like you brought the BBQ inside.  Try this instead. The rattan chairs have an indoor look with clean parson style legs and the slip covered captain chairs in a light airy canvas fabric help to soften all of the wood tones and textures.  This dining space has that breezy and laid back style but it still looks like an indoor space.

2. Moderation.

A little bit can go a long way.  Try a few accents on indoor pieces.  This contemporary kitchen table with a touch of rattan on the seats only gives the space a casual look but doesn’t change the style of the space.  It adds an organic and natural touch to the space adding warmth and texture.

3. Decor.

Rattan has so much texture and warmth but maybe using it in furniture is too much for you or maybe it doesn’t work with your style.  Try using wicker baskets for storage and decor. We love the look of this wicker plate/basket ‘gallery wall’ it really softens up the modern streamlined look in this space and it gives the whole space such a unique style and up against the white washed brick wall it is a great contrast.

4. More than just seating.

Rattan is used in many pieces of furniture not just chairs, look at using a rattan ‘trunk’ as a coffee table or maybe a toy box.

5. Streamline.

Be sure to use items that have clean lines and feel free to add some great pops of colour and pattern but use indoor fabrics so the whole piece looks and feels like it belongs inside. We also love this image because of the wicker basket by the fireplace.

6. Colour.

Don’t love the natural look of rattan but love the texture? Paint it!!  It is so easy to do.  be sure to do it outdoors and choose any spray paint colour you like!  It’s a great way to customize your furniture on a budget.  Go as big and bold as you like

7. Tight on space?

Try stacking low wicker ottomans for coffee tables, end tables and maybe even some spare seating.  These are so versatile and we love them!

8.  Bedroom.

Wicker and rattan have a great way of making the bedroom cozy.  We love it as a textured headboard.  It looks amazing against a bold accent wall and the tone and texture add so much warmth to the space.  It is a great addition to a coastal or beach inspired room.

9. Lighting.

Rattan and wicker  light shades look great either as table lamps, floor lamps or pendants.  The texture is so organic and sculptural.  It works with so many styles of decor.

10. Alternative, sisal.

Sisal and rattan/wicker have similar tones and textures. If you are looking to add this natural texture and tone to your space but not finding furniture pieces you like or don’t want to buy new furniture pieces a sisal rug on the floor.  A classic casual area rug gives any space a casual look and works with most styles of decor.

We love what texture can do for a room, any room…

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The open concept plan is still very popular.  Buyers love it because it is so open and fluid.  You have many options for furniture placement and layout – open concept allows you to do so much in a smaller space.  But open concept can be intimidating and tough to visualize.

As home stagers, we understand how buyers get ‘stumped’ when they see a big and empty open concept space.  Where do I put my sofa? TV? dining space?  Will my furniture fit? It’s very intimidating and over whelming.

This is why staging is so important.  when we stage a home we not only make it pretty for pictures but we think about living and entertaining in the space.  We think about the common questions that buyers have.

Here’s a great example of an open concept living/dining room in a townhouse.

Photo from

It’s a great space for living and entertaining.  Seeing this property vacant you would never guess that you could have dining for six, a sectional and an armchair plus plenty of room to walk around.  So how did this work? Well, the size and scale of furniture is important but so is the placement.  Planning really is key.

A sectional adds so much seating and a clean line which is one of the reasons we love them.  We used the light cream tone because it is neutral and it brightens up the space.  By using a mix of bold and pattern pillows this brings some life into the room.  We love area rugs for a few reasons: they add some soft texture, colour and pattern to a room but they also help define the space.  This rug helps buyers visually understand this space is the living room and over there is the dining area.  It’s like building a wall.


You can apply the same ideas to a condo space.

Photo from

What you will notice these images have in common:

sofas: choose the largest possible sofas to maximize on seating and the other furniture is a bit smaller
lighting: you do not have matching table lamps on matching end tables.  Instead have floor and table lamps around the room to help spread the light around the room
area rug: to add some colour, pattern and/or texture; they also define the rooms and pull the space together

Remember the following when it comes to decorating an open concept space:

– size and scale matter but look for the largest dining table and sofa that will work in the space.  Lots of little items will make it look and feel cramped.
– glass is a great way to get surface space without the bulk
– area rugs help define spaces without building walls
– a consistent colour concept with make the space look fluid and make it feel larger
– layer your light so add table lamps, floor lamps, under valance light in the kitchen
– get creative with nooks and corners – think storage, organizing or work spaces.
– think lifestyle.

Make the space work with your life,

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“I know my living room needs an area rug. But how do I know which size to get? How do I place my furniture around it and what are the best materials for area rugs?

Great question and I think many other are in the same boat as you.  Area rugs creates warmth in a space, they also pull a room together – so they play a very important role.  Area rugs can also add softness to a space and depending on what style you choose, they can act as ‘art’ on the floor by adding a big burst of colour and pattern into the space.

But picking the right size is crucial.  A rug that’s too small will make the room feel small and an area rug that’s too big can chop off a room from the rest of the house.  So how do you pick the right size and place it properly in the room? And which material do you choose?

Size of Rug

– start by measuring the room.  Measure the width and the length.  Then subtract 2-3 feet off of each measurement and that’s the size you should have.  You can opt for something that is custom cut and bound and get (more or less) the precise size or make purchase of something that is close to the measurement you just calculated.

– standard rug sizes range from: 3×5, 5×8, 9 x12 (sometimes you can find odd sizes but these are standard). If you need a larger one or you have an oddly shaped room consider getting a piece of carpet cut to size and bound.  It sounds expensive but it’s usually very affordable

Placement of Rug

– For a dining layout,  measure the length and width of your dining table and add 2 feet on each side. Most dining room tables require a rug that’s at least 8 feet wide.

– For a bedroom layout, extend a rug from the bottom 2/3 of the bed. Alternatively, you could also place two runners on each side or a single runner at the foot of the bed.

– 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 can look like it is just floating and it won’t pull the room together


– When it comes to ‘best’ material a lot of that really depends on what the room will be used for and the style.  Wool rugs are the most expensive and they are top quality – they are soft, they wear well and they have a range of colours but you would want them to be cleaned by a professional so this probably isn’t a great option for say a kids’ playroom. Opt for a synthetic blend for a similar look that’s just as durable for a space like that

–  Natural materials like sisal, jute and sea grass are very affordable and they are neutrals so they work with any colour scheme.  Keep in mind they have a more casual look and they tend to be a bit on the scratchy side.  A synthetic or nylon rug that has the same texture and look with be kinder on the feet. But if you want to get creative the natural sisal, jute or seagrass can be a great backdrop for a cowhide rug(see the image just above).  It still pulls the room together and you get texture and then the pop from the cowhide.

– Flat woven kilim and dhurrie rugs are usually made of cotton or wool, are a fun way to add pattern to a room.  But they are thin so they don’t hold up as well in the long run.  They are best for low traffic areas but if you love the idea of updating your decor regularly with splashes of colour and don’t mind replacing the area rug every few years – this could also work for you

– Rug pads will also help prolong the life of your rugs and the floor underneath.  You can find some very affordable rugs pads that will feel great and stand up to traffic. Plus it will help prevent the rug from slipping all over the place.


Pattern or Solid?

If your room got a lot going on, try a solid color or neutral rug to bring things down to earth—or make a basic sofa pop with a patterned rug.

Versatile Neutrals

A neutral rug forms a solid foundation when you want to  layer on rich textures, patterns or colors. Think of it as the canvas for the rest of your room.

Playful Patterns

If your furniture is a solid color or neutral, try a patterned rug. For foolproof color coordination, match the
secondary color in the rug to your sofa or key furniture.

Solid Colors

A monochromatic rug complements patterned furniture by grounding it in a primary palette. In a living room, try matching the rug to the secondary color in a patterned sofa.

Area rugs really pull a room together …

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