Layered rugs in bedroom
Dormify Team

Rugs 101: How to Choose the Right Rug for Your Room

When it comes to creating your dream dorm room, there are certain necessities you have to make sure you’ve pinned down. A cute comforter: check. Comfy throw pillows: check. Wall decor: Check, check. Now the only thing you need to finish things off in style perfection? A decorative rug. If you’ve been wondering, “Should I get a rug for my dorm?” We’re here to tell you that the answer is YES! An area rug for dorm can help complete your space, and there are so many decor directions you can go. Whether you want a round area rug or a faux sheepskin rug, there’s a style that will fit your vibe.

Keep reading to learn how to choose the perfect rug for your space. Then head to our rug collection to find more cute rugs for dorms! 

Eclectic boho rug from Dormify

Understanding Different Types of Rugs

Before you can choose a rug, you have to understand what your options are! There are several different kinds of rugs. Here’s a quick guide to common styles:

Accent Rug: These are smaller rugs, typically about 4 x 6 feet or smaller, that add color and texture to a space. You might see these in a faux sheepskin style, cowhide, or fun patterns or shapes. They’re really well-suited for dorm rooms because of the small size, and they can give you any aesthetic vibe you’re looking for.  

Area RugA great way to fill up a larger space, an area rug is meant to add warmth and softness to a tiled or wooden floor, and it should take up most of the floor space. You can choose round area rugs or square and rectangular shapes. They’re meant to sit underneath your furniture (at least in part).

Runner Rug: Runners are slim, rectangular rugs that are longer than they are wide. They’re often used in long hallways, but they can also cover narrow spaces in your dorm room. 

Natural Fiber Rug: Any rug that’s made from natural fibers is typically created from woven fibers like jute, sisal, hemp, bamboo, and other materials that come from plants. These earth-friendly rugs add a warm, organic vibe to the room—plus they tend to be super durable. 

Picking a Rug Size for Your Space

When you’re working with a small space, you’ll need to limit the size of your rugs, too. So what size rug is best for a dorm? Well, that depends on your particular room. Before you begin shopping for a dorm rug, research the size of your space online or by measuring if you’ve already moved in. Knowing the size particulars of your room will let you maximize your rug’s impact and make sure it fits properly on your side of the room (or in the whole space, if you’ve conferred with your roomie and agree on the room’s aesthetic and vibe).

Rugs usually come in standard sizes. Here’s a guide to the common sizes you might consider when you're shopping for your dream rug: 

2 x 3: Small but stylish. This size is perfect for placing in any small space that needs just a pop of color, texture or softness. Try this petite size in an organic shape and cozy faux fur to add a dose of stylish flair to a small patch of floor (such as right next to your bed, for a comfy place to put your toes in the a.m.) or draped over a chair for added fluff.

3 x 5: This mid-size option is great for a small space, especially when it comes to decorating your dorm entry area or a small bathroom. Because it’s still pretty small, this size rug is a nice place to play around with fun patterns and trendy prints without overwhelming your space.

4 x 6: A bit bigger, rugs that are 4 by 6 feet are an ideal size to place by your bed in a smaller space and can help elevate your dorm aesthetic. 

5 x 7: If your dorm room is on the larger size or has a small living or dining space, this rug size might be right for you.

8 x 10: Have you and your roomie already agreed on a specific vibe for your shared space? A large 8 by 10 foot rug can cover most of your floor space in a dorm room, and will create a more cohesive, finished aesthetic.

Layered woven rugs in bedroom space

Choosing the Right Material  

Don’t neglect to pay attention to the material that a rug is made from—it can make a big difference in how washable and durable your rug will be. Rugs might be made out of polyester, wool, cotton, or a natural woven fiber, like jute or sisal. The material tag will tell you exactly what a rug is made from, and provide care instructions so you know if it’s machine washable or if it needs to be spot cleaned. Many Dormify rugs are machine washable!

If a rug needs to be spot cleaned, it’s usually because the fabric can’t hold the dye during washing. To spot clean, create a mixture of mild dish soap and water on a sponge or rag and gently blot to clean.

Ready to get shopping? Head to our complete rug collection to see all the styles for your space, or check out our curated room aesthetics.