Traditional rugs may seem old-fashioned to many, but they are actually some of the best and most beautiful rugs you can buy. Many of them have withstood the test of time—both in terms of design and durability—and are still being used in many modern homes today.
Modern collectors, designers, and decorators actually still turn to these luxury pieces when choosing textiles for living spaces. So when you’re looking for rugs to decorate and transform your modern home with, you don’t necessarily have stick to modern carpets. Here’s how you can make those beautiful traditional rugs work for your non-traditional room.
Complement the Walls
When the colors of your rug serve as an interesting piece that complements the color of your room, its old-fashioned design is no longer out of place. The focus will be on how your room looks more balanced, and your traditional rug can be an interesting, timeless piece of art (and a bold splash of color) amidst the more toned down designs of the walls and furniture. Simply choose a large dark rug for a light-colored room for deep contrast, a light rug for a dark-colored room, or a rug with a shade of color that complements the walls (yellow-blue, orange-purple, red-green).
Repeat the Colors
Add room items that are of the same color as your rug to create harmony in the room. For instance, if you have a traditional rug in a bright or burnt red hue, add items like throw pillows, wall artworks, a lamp, or even a piece of furniture that matches the rug’s color. Of course some rugs normally don’t have one specific color, so another way you can do this is to choose the most dominant color in your rug and find accent pieces of the same color to add to your room.
Be Light and Subtle
When people think of traditional rugs, they usually think of bold colors and designs. But in reality, there are many traditional pieces that feature light colors and subtle patterns. These ones, despite their somewhat old-fashioned appearance, can actually work well with modern, minimalist homes. Just make sure to choose a color and design that can easily blend with your light-colored furniture and plain white walls, so as to complete the “airy” look and feel of your modern space.
Heavily-patterned traditional rugs add interest to a mostly white space and plain-colored furniture. In this case, your rug can be of any color you wish, and be prepared for it to be a conversation starter as it is likely to be the first thing that a person notices upon entering the room.
Utilize Bold Colors
It’s not necessarily wrong to match bold-colored traditional rugs with a room that has equally strong colors. In fact, they can work well together to create an interesting living space. Try using strong patterns with a room that is decorated and colored with solid blocks of bold colors. These can work well for entertainment spaces.
Follow a Color Palette
You can either look for a rug that matches the distinct colors of your room or decorate your room according to the colors of a rug that you really like. Either way, making your rug and other room pieces follow a sophisticated color palette creates harmony in the room.
Using contrasting colors in your room is one thing, but here’s another design idea—why not highlight the differences between old and new? Juxtaposition, which is simply a fancy word for contrast, can be created by pairing a traditional rug that looks particularly old-fashioned with furniture, artwork, and other room elements that are blatantly modern or cutting-edge in design.
Not a fan of strong colors? Instead of having to complement a neutral-colored room with a bold rug, you can choose to use a neutral-colored rug too. This way, you can rely on the patterns of your carpet to add interest to the room and maybe even complement the patterns around it.
Whatever traditional and/or tribal rug you decide to add to your home, just make sure that it complements your room and does not overwhelm it. Also, when choosing an antique rug for your home, make sure to go with established rug dealers—especially if you have no knowledge about traditional carpets.