I'd been shopping for new rug for my living room as the one I had been using was from a different house and was too small for the space. I just needed a change. When weighing my rug options, I knew that I was going to go with jute/sea grass/sisal/bamboo or wool, which leads to my first tip:
2) Get a stylish, durable, and completely washable indoor/outdoor rug to save hundreds of dollars. Depending on your living situation (kids, pets, entertaining, etc), indoor/outdoor rugs are stress-free for busy eating areas, hallways, and foyers. Outdoor rugs aren't just for outdoors anymore! Manufacturers make such beautiful indoor/outdoor rugs with hundreds of designs that mimic that high-end designer look that will make you do a double-take.
I've been pretty happy with it so far and once again, it was a little over a $100 for this large size.
Yes, the days of plain-jane, plastic-like outdoor rugs are over...
Alright...so you can see that indoor/outdoor rugs are completely affordable, but what does an all-natural rug going to cost you? This leads me to the last tip...
3) Don't pay retail prices for rugs! I hardly pay retail for anything, including rugs. Shop discount stores, online distributors and stay away from rug shops unless you can get a discounted floor model that you can have cleaned or clearance rugs. I've scoured and scoured the best places to get rugs and these are my favorite sources:
|Great room before adding coffee table and ottomans|
b) Discount stores - HomeGoods, TJ Maxx, Marshall's, Tuesday Morning, and Ross. We all love these stores and I stalked the Raleigh-area HomeGoods for months because I was afraid to order my large wool rug online. I was hoping that the perfect rug would miraculously show up for that room. The prices run about the same as Overstock for the large rugs and you can see exactly what you're getting and can easily return it if it doesn't work out. These places are also great for scatter rugs and smaller-scale rugs for the bathroom, kitchen, etc.
I almost always find large bamboo mats as well and they are usually under $30. I scored this one that I use in my booth for only $8! These also make great stenciling projects. It's hit or miss at any discount store, but be patient and you'll most likely find what you're looking for.
c) Walmart.com and other online distributors I used to think everything from Walmart.com was manufactured by Walmart, but like Target.com, they sell and distribute from other retailers and manufacturers, but many times are able to discount their items heavily, which is also similar to Overstock. This goes back to "don't pay retail"! Most rugs are manufactured by only a handful of companies including, Safavieh, Capel, etc and then retailers will chose which styles/sizes to carry. Here's an example:
I found through online rug searches that retailers will sell the same rug, but will change the names making it harder to do price comparison searches. It helps to find the true manufacturer's name, like Safavieh's "Cambridge Welsh", and then "Google" that name to find the best online deals. It's also helpful that these large chain stores will also have free shipping to the store and many times allow returns there as well saving tons of money and the headache of return shipping.
As with shopping for anything...vacations, home decor, cars, etc, it just pays to do a little research before plunking down the cash. Unless they are small, scatter rugs or bath mats, take your time to find the best deal because you'll most likely be stuck with your decision for several years and rugs are one of the hardest-working design elements in your home. I hope some of my rug shopping tips and tricks helps you along the way!