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The Best Nursery Area Rugs For Your Baby Room

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Top Tips For Finding Nursery Area Rugs To Complement Your Nursery Design

There are so many nursery room rugs to choose from, how do you know where to start?

If you already know what type of nursery rug you want, visit our Nursery Room Rugs Store.


First figure out what you should be looking for in a nursery rug. This will narrow down your options.

Then follow the advice on this page to help you find the right one. It's a process of elimination...

Natural Or Synthetic Nursery Area Rugs

Your first consideration when choosing a rug for your baby nursery, is whether or not you need a natural fiber rug.

If your family has a history of allergies, or if you are planning an organic baby nursery, a rug made from natural fibers will be an essential element of your baby nursery design.

The first part of your rug choosing process is complete - eliminate all synthetic nursery area rugs.

nursery rugs

For tips on what else you should be looking for in organic nursery area rugs, click here.

If you do not have an allergy problem or organic tendencies, this step won't help you - never mind - next!

Tufted Or Flat Weave Nursery Area Rugs

Certain rug types are definitely preferable to others in a baby nursery.

Remember that there will be plenty of yucky stuff landing on your nursery rug. (Baby spit up is not the best thing in the world, even if it is your baby's! Leave it in your rug for a while and the smell will be quite awful!)

You should look for nursery rugs that are easy to clean.

nursery rug

This pretty much eliminates the shaggy, fluffy, poofy rug crowd - unless you can find a machine-washable one.

nursery rug

In fact, unless you're a sucker for punishment, non-washable rugs such as, Orientals, Kilims and Dhurries should all be turning into magic carpets and flying out the window right about now.

What you are looking for, is an easy to vacuum, easy to wipe clean, easy to wash nursery rug. You don't want frills and fringes that are just begging to get grubby. You do want stain resistant fibers and a rug with no backing.

Rug backings make the rug inflexible and difficult to wash. Baby room rug types without backings include, hand-knotted, flat weave and braided area rugs.

Naturally stain resistant fibers include, wool, cotton-wool blends, and sisal. Most synthetic fiber rugs are chemically treated for stain resistance.

Read more about the different types of nursery rug and rug fibers here.

We have managed to eliminate a whole bunch of nursery area rugs with this section. What's next?

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Expensive Or Not

If you are lucky enough to be able to afford whichever nursery rug you like, ignore this section.

If not, you need to decide which end of the nursery area rugs budget scale your rug should land on.

Bear these general guidelines in mind:
Because the baby nursery is a low traffic area, with decor that will change on a short-term basis, durability needn't be at the top of your priority list.
  • Natural fiber rugs usually cost more than synthetic fiber rugs, with wool being the most expensive.
  • Hand-made rugs are more costly than machine-made rugs with good reason. A good hand-knotted rug can take more than a year to complete.
  • The denser the weave of the rug, the better it will wear and the more it will set you back.
  • The tighter the yarn twist, the more expensive, and the more durable the rug will be.

If your baby nursery budget is limited, opt for a nursery room rug with lowish density and yarn twist, made from a more expensive, resilient natural fiber that will not off gas toxins in your baby's room.

It won't be long before your baby is spending an awful lot of time rolling around all over it.

Sizes And Shapes Of Nursery Area Rugs

If you have hard flooring in your baby nursery:

Your first concern when considering the size of your nursery rug should be safety.

One of the biggest benefits of nursery rugs on hard nursery floors is that they give your baby a soft place to land, and a non-slip surface to play on.

baby nursery When deciding on the size of your rug, make sure it will be big enough to reach within 6 inches of the baby changing table and the crib. This will ensure that baby's fall will be cushioned should baby ever accidentally escape the crib - unfortunately it does happen!

Also make sure that the rug will provide a substantial area for your inquisitive bundle of mischief to play on.

If you have nursery carpet:

One of your primary rug benefits is the absorption of dust and pollutants and the lowering of nursery carpet off gassing.

Obviously, the more surface area your baby room rug covers, the bigger the benefit.


To get an idea of the best size area rug for your baby room, spread newspaper on the floor where you intend for the rug to go. Move the newspaper around and experiment with different sizes until you find what looks just right.


Another reason to consider large nursery area rugs is if you are desperately trying to conceal your old worn out nursery flooring - no one will ever guess what's hiding under that rug.

From an interior design perspective, the general rule is that you should have the same amount of flooring exposed at either end of your rug, and the same amount exposed on either side.

For example, one foot at either end and six inches on either side would be acceptable.

Don't get too caught up with this though. We all know that interior design rules were not made for the wonderland of baby nurseries.

When considering placement of nursery area rugs, remember to take into account the space that the door opens into. Some doors will not have enough clearance to allow a rug underneath.

Also try to avoid having the corner of the rug in the doorway. That corner is just waiting for someone (probably you) to trip over it. An oval rug may be a good idea.

If you are planning to make a round baby crib the center of your baby nursery design, think about placing it in the center of the nursery, on a large round nursery rug.

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Using Multiple Nursery Area Rugs

If you have a large baby nursery, you may want to divide the room by using multiple nursery area rugs.

Two rugs the same size will divide the room in half. Using multiple rugs of different sizes will create more interest in the room.

One option is to use one large rug to provide a comfortable play area and landing spot. Add one or more smaller themed nursery rugs to accent your nursery decor.

When using more than one rug in a room, bear the following thoughts in mind.
  • A rug with a pattern blends in better than a rug with a solid color.
  • Busy rug patterns go well with simpler designs.
  • A large pattern will often go well with a smaller pattern.

baby nursery

Colors And Patterns

When you are standing in the middle of the store surrounded by hundreds of different nursery area rugs they all start to look the same.

Here are a few color and pattern tips to help you sort through the jumble.


  • Light colors tend to open up a room. A good choice if you have a small baby nursery.
  • Conversely, dark colors will appear warm and inviting in a large baby room. In a small room, dark colors suck out all of the light, leaving the room feeling cramped and claustrophobic.
  • Use a light colored nursery room rug to offset dark furniture.
  • Use almost any color rug, light or dark in a baby room with light walls and furniture. The rug is a great way to pick up the accent color in the room.
  • A dark rug with dark furniture is almost always a bad idea.
  • Dark colors hide dirt and stains more effectively. If you want a light nursery rug, choose one made with stain resistant fibers. You should be cleaning your nursery rug often to prevent the build up of allergens anyway.


  • Small patterns will make a small room feel larger.
  • Whereas, large patterns will help to ground the design in a large room.
  • Too much "busy" in a room can make it feel small and cluttered. If you already have a patterned crib bedding set and a nursery glider with patterned upholstery, a heavily patterned rug will probably be too much.

    On the other hand, if your bedding, window treatments and furnishings are fairly plain, beautiful patterned or themed nursery area rugs can make lovely focal points.
Read more abut theme decorating with nursery rugs here...

modern nursery rug

Matching Your Nursery Style

The color, pattern, rug fiber and type of rug you choose, will ultimately all depend on the overall style of your baby nursery.

For example, a modern baby nursery will benefit from a rectangular rug to match the sharp angular lines of modern baby nursery furniture. You would probably look for one with a few splashes of bright, bold color. A round knotted rug in pastel hues just won't work.


To add the final soothing touch to a warm country style, you could use an oval, braided nursery rug in rustic shades. A rectangular rug in bold modern colors would be out of place in this baby room.

Always bear in mind the style of nursery you are working towards when choosing your individual nursery decor elements.

Read more about nursery decorating styles and their associated decor elements here.

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Now that you have an idea of what to look for in nursery area rugs you probably want to go browsing around until you find the perfect one...

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If you're having trouble getting started with your baby room, don't miss my FREE Step by Step Nursery Design eCourse. One at a time I'll take you through all the decisions you need to make in order to arrive at the best baby room design for you.

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