When it comes to finding the perfect rug for your dining room space, there’s two things to bear in mind.

You want a rug that works well for both your interior and your home. You need to ensure the rug you choose fits with what the space is used for, to be practical as well as adding design.

This rule especially applies for a dining room. It’s where food is served and people are moving in and around the space a lot. So we have some top tips to make sure the rug you choose is simply the perfect option for your dining room.

Rules For Choosing A Dining Room Rug

The Size

As with any rug, the size is always the first aspect to think of when choosing one for a room.

With a dining room, a rug is best placed centrally to sit beneath the dining area. To do this, you should always ensure that the rug is large enough to fit under both the table and the chairs. On top of this, you should allow space for when the chairs are in use and pulled out.

velvet chairs around a table filled with food on a dining room rug

The rule of thumb is to aim to buy a rug that is around 25-30 inches larger than the table it sits beneath. This is thought to give enough space for chairs to be moved, without being caught on the edges of the rug.

With this in mind, you should still aim to leave space around the edge of the room. Choosing a rug that covers the whole floor without a border can overwhelm a room.

Leaving a border of 6-18 inches can give you the warmth of a rug, without making your dining room feel cramped or too busy.


The Construction

A dining room space is one that needs to be decorated with practicalities in mind, which is where the construction of the rug comes into play.

The best option for a dining room rug is one that is a shorter pile or flat weave style. This is because the longer and thicker the pile, the more can get caught in it. With a dining room, food is bound to be dropped from time to time, and a longer pile makes it harder to clean and deal with a mess.

For flat weave and shorter piles, it’s best to opt for a rug that is made from natural fibres, such as wool. This may seem counter-intuitive, but natural fibre rugs can be easier to clean than synthetic.

a multi coloured rug on the floor of a room with a sofa and small table

Try something like this flatweave style, for a colourful and bold choice that offers practicality as well as design.

Wool rugs are a particularly good choice for a dining room space. Wool is very durable, due to the tight coils that make up the fibre. This makes it ideal for a dining room, where chairs will regularly be dragged across it. 

a dining room style rug in a room with a sofa and wooden flooring with matching accented cushions

A style like this Arccos wool rug is a geometric style that can be an ideal choice for dining room spaces.

Wool is naturally stain-resistant and easy to clean due to it not being as absorbent as a synthetic fabric. Spills will pool and sit on top of the rug, making it easier to mop up. However, greasy and highly pigmented stains will still show on wool. See our guide on how to clean your rug to find out how to best deal with it when the time calls!

The Shape

The shape of the rug is something that needs to be carefully considered in a dining room. A dining space is a room that is quite unique in the house, as the central focus is around furniture.

This means you want to build the decor of the room around the central points of the table and chairs. This will ensure it all looks cohesive and flows well. There are no right or wrong ways to do this, but there are some that are generally used in certain interior styles.

One way to do this, is to match the shape of the table and furniture to the rug. Meaning if you have a round table, place a round rug underneath, like the Maxell rug below, and so on. This helps to frame the table and is an easy way to achieve a cohesive feel between the decor and furniture.

a rounded dining room rug with abstract grey swirls on a wooden floor with a matching stool and blanket

Conversely, you can opt for matching the rug with the room shape. This helps to anchor the furniture within the room, with the rug acting as the link between the two. This can be good for an open plan space, to help to break up the dining room space in a way that still gels with the rest of the room.

Or, for a less rigid way to style your interior, you can opt for an opposing rug shape to the table. If you have a round table, opt for a square rug to make the table the centrepiece of the room. 

an abstract shaped rug with mustard and blue concentric circles sat on grey wooden decking with a chair on top

You can even go for a rug that is an organic and more abstract shape, like this Habitat Aura rug. This helps to add a point of interest to a room, and to break from traditional interior rules to give a more sculptural feel. 

The Colour

The colour is another aspect that you have to think of in a practical sense for a dining room piece. As we mentioned before, it’s a room that is very likely to have a few spills here or there. So it’s best to build your choice of rug around that possibility. As the rugs that fit in with your household are the ones that you’ll love best.

Due to the higher possibility of a spill, opt for a darker coloured rug. Or one that has a busier pattern. This can add a point of interior style, while also cleverly disguising any marks from a spill better than anything of a lighter and neutral shading.

an open room with a red traditionaldining room style tug surrounded by clay coloured walls and seating

This Royal Kashqai rug is the perfect solution to disguise any rogue dropped food or splashes of wine.

The Interior

Once you have the practicalities and interior rules down, it’s best to think how you want to decorate your dining room.

As a rug will take up a large portion of the space, it’s often suggested to start with your rug and build out from there.

To choose your rug, place your furniture in the space before, and see what you want from the rug. The colours you opt for can be the springboard for the decor in the rest of the room. See the rug as a working piece of art, inspiring your room from the floor.

a blue cracked style rug on wooden flooring with a chair say on top

We adore this Mad Men Cracks rug as a feature to build your room around. The rich blue tones mixed with the metallic is a rich tapestry to ripple out from. Using this way of decorating ensures there is a harmony in a room that is pleasing to the eye.


We hope we’ve inspired you to rethink the way you look at your dining room. There’s no better time than the present than to find your new perfect dining room rug. Shop all natural fibrewool and modern rugs on our website to find the style for you. I think a dinner party is in order…

If you want even more inspiration, have a look at how we recommend choosing a rug for your living room, or even your kitchen.