Rug Shopping: Analysis Paralysis

3:12 PM Katy 10 Comments

Everyone knows how bad it sucks to shop for rugs. There's hardly anything you could call "cute" or "pretty" that falls within an affordable price range and fits in with your decor, and even the rugs at the $5,000 price point aren't that cute. However I wouldn't pay $5k for a rug anyway since that's how much I budget for a new car. Let's get real, here.

I have given up trying to find a brick-and-mortar store that carries not-ugly rugs. The best place to look is  Here is an example of a wool rug on Overstock. Please look at the picture closely because we're going to compare:

Now. Here is the exact same rug for sale on Walmart's website. Here's their photo:

Now you tell me: what does this rug look like in real life? I am viewing both of these photos on the same computer. If you want to return a rug you've got to pay the shipping -- ouch.

Here's another example, from

 Okay those two are pretty darn close. That looks good. I feel confident that if I ordered that rug, it would indeed be baby blue and show all of the dirt from my kids shoes in less than 2 days. Excellent.

Here's another Overstock rug pic:

 Okay this rug is not on my wish list for other reasons, but get a load of the same rug on WalMart's site:

Wow. There's a big difference on that one. Hmmm.

I like this one, but I am afraid I'll hate it next year because it's too trendy:

 I'm thinking maybe this one would work since it's got beige in it:

Sigh. I have no clue.

This has been keeping me up at night and I'm obsessing. I can't find a rug that works in my living room without me having to repaint or throw away half of my furniture, and dark enough to hide stains.

I realize that this does not qualify as a "real" problem though -- the fact that I can obsess over this today means that nobody is in the hospital, and I don't have any  major catastrophes on the horizon (yet). Silver lining, yay!

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  1. I'm so not jealous of you right now, rug shopping is a pain. I ended up buying my living room rug from Overstock also. I tried to stay away from the ones without reviews I ended up with a mostly brown rug with green circles. BEST DECISION EVER. It hardly shows ANY dirt which is a must since as soon as my lab is let in the house runs STRAIGHT to my wool rug and does his best bucking bull impression. I would have murdered that dog a long time ago if that rug wasn't brown! Best of all it's 9x12 for just over $300.

    Eventually, you'll come to a point where you can't handle it anymore then cave and pick one. Hope you like what you end up with! Good luck!

  2. OK.... why do you need a rug? I haven't had one in my living room for 12 years because:
    1- the bare floor is easier to clean/sweep/vacuum
    2- rugs attract dust & that brings allergies
    3-2 kids + 2 dogs would just get it dirty & it would bother me
    4- the bare floor is easier to clean/sweep/vacuum.....

    Just a thought....

  3. I just bought my "real" rugs last year after living with the temporary home depot rugs I put down to protect the wood floor. I hated the one in the living room, it did not wear well at all.

    I finally got mine from this rug dealer in Turkey my brother in law met when he went to Afganistan. Gorgeous rugs! I finally bit the bullet after a few back and forth emails and conversations on the phone with him to describe the rugs' coloring, etc. I can't believe I waited 10 years to do it.

    Have fun shopping!

  4. There's always FLOR tiles too- nice and modular, and if there's a spill, you can pick it up and wash it in the sink. They also send you swatches cheap. The first time I signed up with them online, they also sent me a 15% off coupon.

    Not that it helps with the indecision part...

  5. Katy,
    I understand your rug paralysis.
    If you are looking at natural fiber rug go for wool or sea grass. Both resist stains very well. Medium ranges of colors wont show lint or dirt as badly as overall light rugs or dark rugs. Also avoid tufted rugs, they dont hold up well to vacuuming.

  6. I have three favorite rugs of all time. Two are sea grass with a black border. I have a huge one in the living room that we've had for five years, two houses, three kids, and two dogs. It looks brand new. The smaller sea grass is in my kitchen under the island and has things spilled on it approximately three times per week. Everything comes out of it - spaghetti sauce, a pot of coffee, and red crystal light. Everything. My third rug I love is the huge braided rug in my playroom. It's LL Bean and was very pricey new. However, I got it on Craigslist. It was a filthy wreck, but it's enormous and I paid $50 for it. And $100 to have it cleaned, but it was worth every single penny. I'm sure whatever you pick will be fabulous - you have great taste.

  7. I did go with a rug I found on overstock, actually two - the first was an extremely low-pile outdoor rug that I have under my kitchen table (wears great, can move the chairs, plus it keeps the crumbs in the kitchen and not all over the house)

    The second is a very plush geometric one for my office space. Love it! and you can't beat the $2.95 shipping.

  8. I think the first two belong in a rental condo in Hawaii, although cute. The striped one is too busy. I love the gray one, but I agree, too trendy. The last one, while being boring, is going to stand the test of time. I think you should go for the last one, plus, it looks like it would be forgiving to kids and life

  9. When I need a rug I go to the local carpet store with the most wool remnants, pick a nice one that's the right size, and have them bind the edge for an area rug. Recently I got a beautiful, plush and huge (11x11) Karastan one (medium teal with thin cream stripes) for $500.

  10. Rug shopping is the WORST. After battling my indecisiveness with Overstock rugs for 6 months I found a gorgeous high-quality rug at my local HomeGoods for cheap. Good luck to you!!


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