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Rug Size Guides

Where to Put Your Kitchen Rugs

Kitchen rugs are practical and stylish additions to any kitchen. Aside from showing off your personal style, these rugs can add comfort to key stations like sinks, stoves, and preparation spaces. They can also establish pathways to be walked, direct the eye through the room, and create perfect visual balance. With that in mind, there are many ways to station kitchen rugs in the room and optimize your kitchen’s flow.

Learn More About Kitchen Rug Placement

  1. Under the Sink and Dishwashing Area
  2. In Front of the Stove and Cooking Area
  3. Near the Kitchen Island
  4. By the Kitchen Table
  5. Along High-Traffic Paths
  6. In Front of the Sink and Food Prep Area
  7. Around the Breakfast Nook or Seating Area
  8. Under Pet Bowls
  9. In Open Kitchen-Adjacent Spaces
  10. Kitchen Rug Sizes
  11. Avoiding Hazards and High-Moisture Areas
Queen Size Runner Rug
Design by Kelly Taylor, Photography by Nat Rea Photography

Under the Sink and Dishwashing Area

Since sinks are often a key focal point of kitchens, it makes visual sense to line up a small area rug with your sink. By placing a rug in front of your sink or dishwashing area, you create a more supportive station to stand at and allow the rug to catch any spills instead of letting water make the floor slick and unsafe.

In Front of the Stove and Cooking Area

Stoves and cooking areas are another popular space to include either a small 2x3 rug or a larger runner rug. Placing a rug in these areas is ideal for creating a stylish workspace and maximizing its comfort. When you choose a supportive kitchen rug or carpet, you can reduce any fatigue on your feet while you’re cooking and protect the floor from any spills or food.

Round rug for queen size bed
Queen Size Runner Rug

Near the Kitchen Island

In many kitchens, the island is a central focal point. Systically then, it makes sense to place a rug along at least one side of the island in order to highlight the island’s style and central placement. Kitchen runner rugs are popular for these areas, since they can match the island’s linear design and provide a more comfortable extended surface to stand on. Runners are also able to create clear paths and walkways, thus improving the flow of the kitchen’s traffic.

By the Kitchen Table

Some kitchens feature a smaller or separate area for a kitchen table. In these cases, you can use a small or medium area rug to ground the kitchen table and chairs. When you center your table on top of the rug, you create visual balance and ensure that there is plenty of room for the chairs to move on top of the rug. Practically speaking, a rug can also protect your kitchen floor from sliding chairs, crumbs, and spills.

Round rug for queen size bed

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Queen Size Runner Rug
Design by Farah Prochaska

Along High-Traffic Paths

Runner rugs are ideal for defining key walkways in the kitchen. When you place kitchen runner rugs or small area rugs along the kitchen’s most traversed paths, you ensure those spaces are more comfortable to walk on. Thanks to their placement near cabinets and counters, these kitchen mats can also serve as extra support to key stations like sinks, stoves, and islands. Plus, rugs can even protect the floor beneath them by taking the brunt of the foot traffic and keeping dirt and stains off the floor.

In Front of the Sink and Food Prep Area

Perhaps your sink is directly next to your food prep area. Or, perhaps these are two separate spaces entirely. If they are next to one another, then a runner rug or small area rug may be the perfect accent and standing area for a unified workstation. If your sink and food prep areas are further apart, you may choose to accent each space with a small 2x3 rug, or you may mix and match different rug sizes to line up with the sink and food prep counters. Doubling up on rugs is a great way to create distinct spaces while still creating a cohesive, functional kitchen.

Round rug for queen size bed
Design by Patricia Brown
Queen Size Runner Rug
Design by Jacklyn Graniczny via Jacklyn Graniczny Designs

Around the Breakfast Nook or Seating Area

Some kitchens have a built-in breakfast nook or separate seating area. Adding a small area rug to these spaces can establish them as being separate from the main kitchen and create a more cozy, relaxed tone in that space. Round rugs, rectangular rugs, square rugs, and others can all be used to accent your unique seating area or breakfast nook.

Under Pet Bowls

If your pets’ water dishes and food bowls are located in the kitchen, then you can easily place a small 2x3 rug beneath those bowls. From a practical standpoint, the rug will catch any dribbling water or spills before they can extend further into the kitchen and create a slipping hazard. Aesthetically, your rug can show off a unique aspect of your personality, the pet’s identity, or simply balance with the rest of the kitchen’s rugs.

Round rug for queen size bed
Image by PayUOC
Queen Size Runner Rug
Design by Kristina Phillips of Kristina Phillips Interior Design

In Open Kitchen-Adjacent Spaces

In today’s open concept homes, you often have your kitchen open to your dining room and perhaps your living room. You may choose to physically connect your kitchen to an adjacent space by placing a larger rug between your kitchen and dining space. Alternatively, your kitchen rugs can feature similar colors, patterns, and shapes to the other rugs so that no matter what line of sight you have, the adjacent spaces all share a cohesive style and color scheme.

Kitchen Rug Sizes

You may be wondering what size rug to use in your kitchen. There is no one standard size that fits all kitchens. A standard 2x3 or 3x5 rug is fine for accenting sinks, but what if you want a runner rug to extend along your cabinetry? What if you want to include multiple rugs in your kitchen? Because each kitchen’s layout and functionality is so different, there are many ways to accent the space by using the same rug in multiple sizes and locations. 

2x3 and 3x5 are popular rug sizes for specific stations like sinks and stoves. Runner rugs that are 2x5, 2x6, or 2x7 are common options for defining pathways or creating more comfortable surfaces at multiple workstations. Finally, small area rugs like 4x6, 5x7, or 5x8 can fill out the majority of the kitchen or adorn a separate seating area. Ultimately, the best kitchen rug size will depend on how and where you’ll combine rugs along with the size and layout of your kitchen.

Round rug for queen size bed
Design by Nadia Watts of Nadia Watts Interior Design

Design by Joe Human of Designs By Human

Avoiding Hazards and High-Moisture Areas

When you’re placing a rug in the kitchen, it’s important that it is a safe accent. Be sure that your rug isn’t too tall, or else it may pose a tripping hazard. It’s also important to consider whether your rug has a strong grip back built into it, or if you should invest in a rug pad. Finally, for the sake of your rug’s longevity and beauty, be sure that it can stand up to any messes that you have in the kitchen. Any spills, water splashes, or other debris shouldn’t get stuck on the rug and create a slick surface.


It’s common practice to add at least one rug to the kitchen, since rugs act as extra support for key workstations and walkways. Now that you’ve seen some ideas for placing different kitchen rugs throughout the room, you can create the best layout for your kitchen, show off your style, and make a wise investment in your kitchen.

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