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Braided Rugs

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Braided Rugs Facts & Buying Guide

Braided rugs have a rich history stretching back to early Colonial America, when these rugs were crafted by hand from scraps of colorful fabric. Today, braided rugs complement a range of styles. So whether your look leans towards classic Americana, primitive country, modern farmhouse, or simply casual, bring a braided rug home and enjoy its rustic charm.

About Braided Rugs Braided rugs were common in early Colonial American homes, where they added warmth and beauty to wooden floors. These thrifty rugs were one of the earliest examples of “upcycling” — by using up leftover bits of fabric from old clothing and textiles and reworking them into thick, colorful rugs, these scraps were saved from the waste bin and transformed into something both beautiful and practical.

Braided rugs today are casual, cozy and come in a wide range of shapes and hues. These durable rugs are well-suited to busy households and high-traffic zones like the kitchen. And thanks to their unique braided construction, most braided area rugs are reversible.

Shapes of braided rugs and how to use them:

  • Rectangular: In larger sizes, these are ideal for big spaces like the living room or bedroom. Smaller rectangular braided rugs work well in the mudroom or laundry.
  • Runner: These long, narrow braided rugs are perfect in hallways and kitchens.
  • Round: A round braided rug makes a cozy addition to a reading nook or playroom.
  • Oval: Pair an oval dining table with a large oval braided rug for a complementary look.

Common materials of braided rugs:

  • Wool: Wool is a high quality rug material that makes for a soft feel underfoot. Wool has natural soil and stain resistance.
  • Polypropylene: Also called olefin, polypropylene is a synthetic fiber that is strong, colorfast, and comfortable. Polypropylene is an excellent substitute for wool when the rug is used in a damp or high-traffic area. It is stain-resistant, easy to clean, water-resistant and incredibly durable.
  • Cotton: Cotton is budget-friendly and soft underfoot, though not as durable as wool. Cotton is also easy to clean, making it a good choice for the kitchen and kids room.

Where to use braided area rugs:

  • Warm up a cozy country kitchen with a braided runner.
  • Use a colorful braided rug In the nursery or playroom.
  • Add a low-maintenance braided rug to the mudroom.
  • Anchor the living room with a large rectangular braided rug.
  • Bring cozy warmth to a reading nook with a round braided rug.

Braided Rugs: Past and Present

Braided rugs have been warming toes by fireplaces and woodstoves for hundreds of years. In the early days of Colonial America along the eastern seaboard, braided rugs graced the floors of many homes. Although they were made from fabric scraps, they also provided a creative outlet to the colonists, who intentionally crafted these colorful designs to add beauty to their homes.

Throughout the long history of the braided rug, there have always been those who value their simple, unfussy charm. And today, with the steady rise in popularity of the DIY and simplicity movements, there is certainly room in our homes for classic braided rugs.

Styling and Care Tips for Braided Rugs

Braided rugs are durable and low-maintenance, making them perfect for busy homes and high-traffic areas. That said, to help your rug look good and avoid damage, it helps to follow these guidelines:

  • For braided rugs made from wool, blot (don’t rub!) any liquid spilled before applying a gentle, neutral detergent to clean. Do not use “oxy” type cleaners on wool rugs.
  • For braided rugs made from synthetic fibers such as olefin, nylon, and rayon, the same method can be used — and for tough spots, it’s okay to use “oxy” type cleaners.
  • Rugs Direct recommends avoiding using a vacuum with a beater bar on any area rug to keep it in the best possible shape.

Decor styles that best complement braided rugs:

  • Classic Americana: If primitive antiques, shaker style, and vintage Americana make your heart sing, braided rugs would make an ideal — and authentic — match.
  • Modern Farmhouse: If you’re a fan of the modern farmhouse look made popular by Joanna Gaines, a braided rug makes a warm addition to the crisp white walls and comfortable mix of vintage and new items that make up this well-loved style.
  • Shabby Chic: Chippy white furniture and pale pastels work well with the simple charm of a braided rug. A pale pastel, gray or white braided rug would make a welcome touch in a shabby chic bedroom or living room.
  • Rustic: Cabin, lodge and vintage camp style share a love of rustic wood, heavy beams, cozy fireplaces, and other simple, natural elements. Braided rugs make a natural pairing, whether beside a woodstove, bed, or in a rustic kitchen.

Ways to work your braided area rug:

  • Add texture and warmth to a simple space with a neutral braided rug.
  • Anchor an antique farmhouse dining table with a large rectangular braided rug.
  • Put a round braided rug in the nursery or playroom and use it as a floor play area.
  • Use a colorful braided rug in a country style bedroom.

Find Your Perfect Braided Area Rug

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