Rugs are expensive. There is no getting away from it; if you want a rug which is going to last, you are going to have to pay for it. And, why shouldn’t you? When you are investing in a rug, you are not only investing in something which looks stylish and will tie your room together; you are investing in something durable, something which will be stepped on frequently, and will hold up to constant use.
A durable rug will save you money in the long run, and that is because the cost is not the same as the affordability. I truly believe that you do not need to spend the most money to get the best product, but you do have to spend a little more to get quality. A rug which you buy once is a lot more cost-effective than one which you have to replace over and over.
No one wants a rug which will wear down. No one wants to have to buy a replacement rug once they have found the perfect one. So, what do you need to do to find a rug which will last forever?
What Is The Rug Made From?
Whether you are looking online or are in a store, the look of the rug alone is not enough to determine its durability (even the feel of it can only tell you so much). Before you buy a rug, you need to know what it is made from. A high-quality rug is crafted from high-quality materials, and here are some of the most common.
Wool has been used to craft rugs for hundreds of years. When you think of a wool rug, you think of quality and style. There is a reason for that. Wool is a soft and durable material which is resistant to spills and wear. Wool looks great and will last for a long time if you take care of it.
Cotton is another classic material in the rug world. Like wool, cotton is very soft and stylish. The only problem with cotton is that it is not as durable as wool. A cotton rug will last for a long time if you take care of it, and is also more affordable than wool.
If you are looking for a material which is as durable as wool, then a synthetic material will get the job done. Synthetics are as durable as wool and a lot cheaper. They are easy to clean but do not have the softness or high-quality feel of wool.
Jute is another option, though it is best suited for outside use. The fibers are extremely hard-wearing, and that also makes them tough. Think of this material as your best friend when you are wiping your muddy boots as you come in from the outside.
Silk rugs are soft and luxurious. They are not the toughest rugs in the world, but they will last if you take care of them. Use them in low-traffic areas, and they will be around for a long time.
The material of your rug will help to determine how long your rug lasts, but there is more to think about. So, what else impacts the durability?
Searching For Durability
Low-Pile vs. Deep-Pile.
High-quality materials generally make high-quality rugs but what about the pile? The pile of the rug will help you to determine the use and how easy it is to maintain. The pile dictates how long the fibers are, and the longer the pile, the longer the fibers. There are advantages to both low pile and deep pile.
Low-pile rugs have short fibers. While this means that the fibers are shorter, stiffer, and less plush, it also means that the rug is easier to clean. I find that cleaning goes a long way to prolonging the life of your rug.
Deep-pile rugs have longer and softer fibers. While this makes them harder to clean, it does make them better to lay on. I love to laze on a plush rug by the fire. The use of your rug will dictate how long the pile should be and, consequently, how easy the rug is to clean.
What is the line count? The more knots or stitches per square inch, the higher the line count. The higher the line count, the higher the quality and the more durable your rug is. The line count is measured in knots per square inch, and you will most commonly find rugs 200-400kpsi. At the far end of the scale, you can find handmade rugs which are 5.000kpsi and above.
The needle count is the number of loops or fibers in the rug. Just like the line count, the higher the needle count, the better the rug.
How To Check The Quality Of A Rug
I don’t know about you, but I love to run my fingers through a rug and feel the fibers. There is something to be said about shopping online (mainly the lower costs), but nothing quite replaces getting to feel your rug before you buy it. With a little information on what you are looking for, you can check the quality of a rug by touch alone.
Checking The Material
Most high-quality rugs are crafted from wool, so I am going to talk predominantly about that material, but the principles apply to all materials. I like to run my fingers through a wool rug and feel the quality of the fibers.
Run your fingers through the fibers and massage them. If the material is soft and pliable, then the wool is generally high-quality and durable. If the fibers are rough and brittle, then move onto the next rug. If you are shopping online, you can go by the material and product details alone, but nothing replaces getting your hands dirty (though you won’t actually get them dirty).
When you are checking the material, you can check the pile too. Move your fingers to the bottom of the fibers and give them a little wiggle. Not only does this feel good but the resistance between the fibers will give an indication of the pile. The more resistance, the higher the pile.
Color, Cost, & Design
Just because you are looking for a durable and high-quality rug, that does not mean that you cannot also find a stylish and affordable rug. Once you have narrowed your choice down by quality, you can choose the rug that you actually want.
Think about the color scheme of your room and choose a color of rug which either ties the room together or matches it. The other thing to think about with the color is the longevity of it. Look at where different colors meet and make sure that there is no bleeding between the colors. Lines which are hard and fast usually mean that the colors are going to last. Make sure that the color goes all the way down to the knot. When you are running your fingers through the fibers, make sure that the color does not come off and onto your fingers.
A durable rug does not mean an exorbitant rug. I have found that if you put these tips into practice, you can shop around and find high-quality rugs which are also affordable. Places like Amazon will offer free shipping (and shipping costs for rugs can be high), while local retailers will allow you to check out the rug first and let know where it comes from.
Sometimes it is better to buy local and know the ethics behind a rug, though you can often find this online too. Online retailers will often be cheaper but you cannot try the rug before you buy. The perfect rug is out there, all you have to do is find it.