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What Color Rug Should I Use For Dark Wood Floors?

5 reasons why it might not be the best idea

By Blake Lockwood | Curated by Blake Lockwood | Reviewed by Blake Lockwood

Blake Lockwood, the seasoned interior designer behind Decor Snob, has made a name for himself with over 30 years of industry experience. As a member of esteemed associations such as the NCIDQ, CIDA, NAAB, and CCIDC, he upholds high standards in his work.  His content is always people-first, reliable, and engaging.

what color rug goes with dark wood floors

Dark wooden floors can give a space a modern look with its eye-catching color. However, the darkness can sometimes swallow up a room if the color is very dark. The darkness can make or break a room design and make it appear too dull or small. This coloring is an issue that many homeowners face when choosing a dark wood color. However, there are things you can do to combat it, such as placing an area rug to define an area.

So, what color rugs can go atop dark wooden floors? There are many color options when picking out a rug to go on top of dark wood. A light color rug is the best option with a dark wood floor when you want a modern look. Bright color rugs that match the walls or accessories in the room also look good on dark wood. If you want to use a dark-colored rug, then offset them with lightly colored walls for contrast.

dark hardwood floors with colorful rug

The type of rug can also dictate the color that you choose. An area rug with light, muddled colors would be a great complement to the dark wood. Whereas, a small rug with bright colors that matches the colorful bookcase in the room would also work well. You could also choose any of these options for rugs:

  • Moroccan rug
  • Hide rug
  • Fluffy rug
  • Area rug
  • Small rug

How to Use Light-Colored Rugs on dark wood floors?

dark hardwood floors decorating ideas

Use The Light Color To Segment An Area

White and grey rugs can do wonders as sharp contrasts to the darkness of your wooden floors. They are both eye-catching and a great way to showcase your style. You can use any kind of rug in the room that caters to your style. Hide rugs look great in modern spaces that have lots of leather. In contrast, area rugs can look great in dining spaces.

Don’t Shy Away From Bright Colors.

You shouldn’t feel stuck with only choosing white or grey-colored rugs to make your space look modern and elegant. You can bring a splash of color to the spaces by choosing brightly colored rugs. They can be small rugs or even area rugs to draw attention to a particular area of the room. Rugs can be a great way to showcase your personality while also bringing more color to the area.

Combine White With Bright Colors

Don’t feel like you have only to use white rugs to contrast against your dark floors. Many rugs can have white mixed in with bright colors like green or yellow. Cater your furniture or decor with the rug to bring cohesion into the spaces. This opportunity will open you up to get creative in choosing your rug color while decorating your room.

What If I Want To Use Dark-Colored Rugs?

dark rug on dark floor

Make Sure To Use Light-Colored Walls Or Furnishings

A dark rug doesn’t have to unusable if you have dark wood floors. You just have to balance the dark with light in other ways. You can do this by painting the walls a light color or using bright furniture to offset the darkness. This strategy will help keep the room from feeling dark and heavy. The light color also doesn’t have to be white, and you can use anything so long as it’s lighter than the floor and rug.

Combine Dark With Light

Many rugs have multiple colors mixed into the design. Often, light can be combined with dark and provide a modern looking rug. You can use this to your advantage and place the mixed color rug atop your dark wood. It will tie in the light colors of the walls or furniture, and the dark will match the floors. It will combine the different areas of the room to bring it all together.

Use Different Textures In The Room

Another way to use dark-colored rugs in the room is to go for a different texture. A fluffy or Moroccan rug can look great against the sleek dark wood. It can also bring attention to itself and draw the eye to that area of the room. These rugs will help bring separation of the space while still looking chic and elegant. Plus, texture can feel great to walk across for those of us who like the feel of texture ugs on our feet!

Find Different Shades Of Dark Colors

If you are going for a chic look, then look no further than mixing shades of color. You can rock a dark rug atop dark wood if you play around with the color. A dark brown rug with varying shades of brown can look great. It also brings depth to the room and can be eye-catching in its own right. Feel free to take samples of rugs home before buying so you can see if the rugs will look good.

Photo: Martin's Floor Covering
Photo: Gacek Design Group, Inc.
Photo: Linda McDougald Design | Postcard from Paris Home

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