The Best Rugs for Dining Rooms of 2021

Add warmth, color, and texture to your dining room with a stylish and low-maintenance area rug.

By Jasmine Harding | Published Nov 12, 2021 8:17 AM

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The Best Rugs for Dining Rooms Option

Photo: amazon.com

A well-chosen rug can elevate a dining area and pull various decor items and furniture together for a more cohesive look. Rugs can be a gorgeous focal point in any dining space, and the best rugs for dining rooms can also dampen noise and protect flooring from possible dents and scratches caused by moving heavy tables and chairs. They also provide a soft spot underfoot for when you’re enjoying breakfast or hosting a dinner party.

Read on to learn what features to consider when comparing dining room rugs. Then, explore our top picks list which includes some of the best dining room rugs that are stylish, easy to clean, and help create a cozy and tidy dining area.

  1. BEST OVERALL: nuLOOM Ethel Medallion Fringe Area Rug
  2. BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Artistic Weavers Klaudia Trellis Modern Area Rug
  3. UPGRADE PICK: Safavieh Heritage Collection HG911A Wool Area Rug
  4. BEST NATURAL FIBER: Home Decorators Collection Raleigh Jute Area Rug
  5. BEST OUTDOOR RUG: Fab Habitat Reversible Rugs Indoor or Outdoor Use
  6. BEST MACHINE-WASHABLE: Ruggable Verena Dark Wood Rug
  7. BEST MODERN: nuLOOM Contemporary Thigpen Area Rug 
  8. BEST TRADITIONAL: Well Woven Barclay Medallion Traditional Area Rug
  9. BEST BOHEMIAN: SAFAVIEH Madison Collection MAD611B Boho Area Rug
  10. ALSO CONSIDER: Unique Loom Bromley Collection Vintage Area Rug
The Best Rugs for Dining Rooms Option

Photo: amazon.com

How to Choose the Best Rugs for Dining Rooms

A dining room area rug can add a bit of decorating oomph to tie the dining room decor together. The right pick can transform a room, but with so many sizes and styles to choose from, it can be challenging to find the best pick for a home. Ahead are some of the main dining room rug features to consider, including the rug size, shape, material, pile, pattern, and ease of maintenance.

Rug Size

When shopping for a dining room rug, two important factors are the size of the dining room and the size of the table with its chairs. The right rug size for dining table areas extends at least 2 feet past the chairs when they’re pushed in. This larger size will prevent the chair legs from catching on the rug when guests move the chairs to sit down and stand up.

To make a bigger statement, consider going even larger. Many experts suggest choosing a rug that stops at least 6 inches short of the edge of the room or other furniture (like shelving or a china cabinet). Smaller rugs can also work if the budget or space is tight, but a rug that’s too small may get in the way of moving chairs.

Common dining room rug sizes range from 5-foot by 7-foot to 9-foot by 12-foot rugs. Square and circular rugs starting at 6 feet wide are also common in dining areas.

Table and Rug Shape

Most shoppers choose a rug that matches their table shape: a rectangular rug for a rectangular table, or a circular rug for a round table. That’s not to say that shapes can’t be mixed and matched. Round tables can also pair well with square rugs, and round or oval rugs can go with square or rectangular tables.

When choosing a rug shape, look for the one that has the most visual appeal in relation to the space. Rugs are such a flexible decor piece that it’s always best to decorate to personal tastes, even if it means breaking a few rules. For a unique look, consider incorporating irregular rug shapes or layer multiple rugs to create a shape.

Material and Pile Height

Messes and spills are inevitable in a dining room, so easy-to-clean materials are usually a must. Wool and synthetic fabrics like polypropylene are among the most common, durable, and easiest to clean materials. These materials create beautiful rugs that are also low-maintenance. While other materials like natural fibers or cotton can work in the dining room, they are more prone to staining.

High-pile rugs are harder to clean, even in low-traffic areas. In the dining room, high-pile rugs can trap crumbs and soak up liquids and stains. To make maintaining the rug easier, opt for a flatweave or low-pile rug in the dining room. A pile height of ½ inch or less will make for much easier cleaning and maintenance. Plus, it’s easier to move chairs on a low-pile rug, and they tend to show less wear, even under heavy foot traffic.

Color and Pattern

It’s important to choose a color and pattern that is appealing and blends with the dining room decor. Whether a rug will be an accent piece to tone down a room or a statement rug to add drama changes the kinds of colors and patterns considered. Complementary hues and neutral tones can blend seamlessly into a dining room, while striking colors and patterns make a bold statement.

The right color or a loud pattern can also do wonders when it comes to hiding spills and stains (because no matter how careful, they easily happen in the dining room or kitchen). Darker colors hide stains better and any type of pattern, whether bold or subtle, will make it even harder to spot blemishes.

Rug Pad

A rug pad is a must-have accessory under any rug, especially under a heavy dining set. Rug pads protect flooring and also increase the lifespan of a rug. The thin layer of material helps to keep the rug in place, preventing bunching, sliding, and shifting under moving chairs.

Rug pads also protect flooring from the rough underside of the rug, which is especially important under heavy furniture like a dining room table and chairs. This layer can also protect floors from spills, which are bound to happen at the dining room table. Plus, they’re usually not expensive, so they’re a worthwhile add-on while shopping for a new rug.

Cleaning

Choosing an easy-to-clean material is the first step to keeping a low-maintenance dining room rug. The best rugs for dining room spaces are durable; they need to hold up to weekly vacuuming and the occasional spot cleaning of spills. This is where low-pile wool and synthetic rugs have an advantage. These rugs tend to be stain resistant, easy to vacuum, and simple to spot clean.

Some shoppers even opt for outdoor rugs to use in a dining room (especially in homes with messy kids or pets) since they’re made to withstand heavy wear and tear and are simple to clean. Machine-washable rugs are also available for those looking for the simplest and fastest clean, but a rug must be sized so that it can fit in the washing machine.

Our Top Picks

Bring visual interest, color, and comfort while anchoring a dining room space with a stylish and practical dining table rug.To help with the search for a new rug, some of the best dining room rugs are listed below by category. All of these picks are easy to clean, adding a low-maintenance and stylish touch to the dining room floor and decor.

Best Overall

The Best Rugs for Dining Rooms Option: nuLOOM Ethel Medallion Fringe Area Rug
Photo: amazon.com

A patterned area rug can elevate a dining space, and this rug from nuLOOM is an eye-catching pick. While this rug comes in a rusty orange and red with blue-and-white highlights, several other colors are available. The traditional medallion pattern is busy and beautiful, and will do well to hide many spills or stains. Two edges are lined by a fringe detail that add a pretty accent to this rug.

This rug is available from nuLOOM in a variety of shapes and sizes to suit a range of dining room and table configurations. Their sizes range from 2 feet by 3 feet up to 10 feet by 13 feet, and the rug comes in rectangular, runner, oval, round, or square designs. Made of 100 percent polypropylene with a 0.24-inch pile, it’s a resilient and easy-to-clean choice for the dining room.

Product Specs

  • Material: Polypropylene
  • Pile height: 0.24 inch
  • Shape: Rectangle, runner, oval, round, square

Pros

  • Wide range of sizes and shapes
  • Attractive pattern
  • Easy to clean

Cons

  • Fringe detail may tangle over time

Best Bang for the Buck

The Best Rugs for Dining Rooms Option: Artistic Weavers Klaudia Trellis Modern Area Rug
Photo: amazon.com

In a high-traffic area like the dining room, rugs can quickly wear down or become dirty. If you’re replacing the dining room rug often (or plan to replace it frequently in the future), opt for a more budget-friendly choice. This area rug from Artistic Weavers is a charming and affordable pick.

Machine woven from 100 percent polypropylene in Turkey, this rug is durable with minimal shedding. Combined with its stain-resistant build, the bright blue-and-white pattern is ideal for keeping a tidy look in busy dining rooms. The rug is 0.3-inch thick, making it ideal for placing under dining room furniture without getting in the way.

Product Specs

  • Material: Polypropylene
  • Pile height: 0.3 inch
  • Shape: Rectangle, square, round

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Vibrant color
  • Stain resistant

Cons

  • May take time to flatten completely after shipping

Upgrade Pick

The Best Rugs for Dining Rooms Option: Safavieh Heritage Collection HG911A Wool Area Rug
Photo: amazon.com

Real wool rugs are a classic for a reason. Not only do they look beautiful, but they’re also easy to clean and stand up well to the demands of everyday life. This wool rug from Safavieh’s Heritage Collection features a colorful pattern and brings a traditional touch to a dining room.

This rug is made of 100 percent premium, hand-spun wool that’s hand-tufted into a vintage-inspired design. A durable cotton canvas backing helps the rug keep its shape, even through plenty of foot traffic and cleaning. To suit any dining space, Safavieh sells this rug in several shapes and sizes, spanning from 2 by 3 feet to 12 by 18 feet.

Product Specs

  • Material: Wool
  • Pile height: 0.5 inch
  • Shape: Rectangle, runner, oval, round, square

Pros

  • 100 percent wool
  • Traditional pattern
  • Sturdy cotton canvas backing

Cons

  • Pricey

Best Natural Fiber

The Best Rugs for Dining Rooms Option: Home Decorators Collection Raleigh Jute Area Rug
Photo: homedepot.com

Most natural fiber rugs don’t resist messes and stains as well as wool and polypropylene rugs, but materials like jute and sisal give rugs a beachy look that’s hard to mimic. If a natural fiber rug is preferred for the dining room, consider reaching for this jute area rug from Home Decorators Collection.

This rug is handwoven in India using 100 percent jute and features a decorative wool tassel for an effortlessly chic look. The tassel fringe detail adds more visual interest to this rug and sets it apart from plain jute rugs. With a low 0.25-inch pile, it’s a suitable choice for the dining room. This rug comes in a rectangular or runner shape, ranging from 2.5 feet by 6 feet up to 12 feet by 15 feet.

Product Specs

  • Material: Jute and wool
  • Pile height: 0.25 inch
  • Shape: Rectangle, runner

Pros

  • Handwoven
  • 100 percent jute
  • Low-pile weave

Cons

  • Not as stain resistant

Best Outdoor Rug

The Best Rugs for Dining Rooms Option: Fab Habitat Reversible Rugs Indoor or Outdoor Use
Photo: amazon.com

Outdoor rugs are made to withstand heavy wear and tear. Since they’re easier to clean, they are also a popular choice for indoor dining rooms. For those considering adding a dining room carpet, or for homes with messy children or pets, this outdoor rug from Fab Habitat can be a good option.

This durable rug is made entirely from recycled plastic polypropylene, created from recycled single-use straws. Skilled artisans hand-weave these polypropylene fibers together to create this colorful rug, making it a sustainable choice as well as a sturdy one.

Designed for indoor or outdoor use, this rug is very easy to clean as well as UV and fade resistant. It comes in a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors to dress up a space. If it falls victim to any stains or mishaps, the rug is also reversible, so you can flip it over and start anew.

Product Specs 

  • Material: Polypropylene
  • Pile height: Flatweave
  • Shape: Rectangle, square, round

Pros

  • Sustainable
  • Reversible
  • UV and fade resistant

Cons

  • Does not feel plush underfoot

Best Machine-Washable

The Best Rugs for Dining Rooms Option: Ruggable Verena Dark Wood Rug
Photo: ruggable.com

Machine-washable rugs make cleaning a breeze. In the event of a spill, toss the Verena Dark Wood Rug from Ruggable into the washing machine. This rug features an ornate Persian rug pattern but with an updated and modern farmhouse feel. The variety of deep color shades and the slightly distressed look makes it a great choice under the dining room table. Ruggable offers this rug in a variety of sizes in rectangular, runner, and round versions.

This rug has a very low 0.125-inch pile made of stain-resistant polyester with a polyurethane water-resistant barrier. The thin design allows it to pair with one of Ruggable’s included rug pads. When it’s time to wash, the rug can be detached from the rug pad and tossed into the washing machine.

Product Specs

  • Material: Polyester
  • Pile height: 0.125 inch
  • Shape: Rectangle, runner, round

Pros

  • Machine washable
  • Stain and water resistant
  • Includes rug pad

Cons

  • More expensive than other options

Best Modern

The Best Rugs for Dining Rooms Option: nuLOOM Contemporary Thigpen Area Rug
Photo: amazon.com

A modern area rug can bring style to a contemporary dining room without overwhelming the space. This rug from nuLOOM has a simple lined design to add an attractive backdrop to a seating area. It comes in two neutral grays, ideal for complementing and blending in a modern styled space.

This rug is available in several shapes and sizes, from as small as 2 by 3 feet to as large as 12 by 18 feet. Each rug is made from 100 percent polypropylene that is easy to clean. The medium 0.43-inch pile feels plush but is still resilient and resistant to stains and everyday wear and tear.

Product Specs 

  • Material: Polypropylene
  • Pile height: 0.43 inch
  • Shape: Rectangle, runner, oval, round, square

Pros

  • Modern design
  • Neutral color
  • Wear resistant

Cons

  • Simple design may show stains

Best Traditional

The Best Rugs for Dining Rooms Option: Well Woven Barclay Medallion Traditional Area Rug
Photo: amazon.com

A traditional area rug can instantly make a dining room feel more cozy and comfortable. This rich patterned rug from Well Woven features a classic medallion pattern and comes in several rich colors. The ornate pattern isn’t only eye-catching, but it will also help hide wear and spills through the years.

This rug is available in rectangular and round shapes in several sizes to add a pop of color to a breakfast nook or a large dining room. The polypropylene build is stain and fade resistant and features a jute backing that is safe for hardwood floors. With a 0.4-inch pile height, this rug has a soft texture that feels plush underfoot.

Product Specs

  • Material: Polypropylene
  • Pile height: 0.4 inch
  • Shape: Rectangle

Pros

  • Intricate traditional pattern
  • Stain and fade resistant
  • Jute backing

Cons

  • Higher pile can be harder to clean

Best Bohemian

The Best Rugs for Dining Rooms Option: SAFAVIEH Madison Collection MAD611B Boho Area Rug
Photo: amazon.com

This rug from Safavieh is bright, colorful, and built for high-traffic spaces—ticking some important boxes for a boho dining room setup. It comes in a range of color options, each of them with a mix of fun and vibrant shades. The rug has a floral medallion pattern with a slightly distressed look to fit into a boho theme.

Safavieh sells this rug in several shapes and sizes, from 2-foot 3-inch by 4-foot runners to large 12- by 18-foot rugs. Made of polypropylene, this rug is durable, stain resistant, and low shedding. The 0.4-inch pile is suitable for high traffic areas, striking the balance between a soft feel and an easy-to-clean surface.

Product Specs

  • Material: Polypropylene
  • Pile height: 0.4 inch
  • Shape: Rectangle, runner, square, round

Pros

  • Wide range of shapes and sizes
  • Several color options
  • Boho floral medallion pattern

Cons

  • Light color may show some stains

Also Consider

The Best Rugs for Dining Rooms Option: Unique Loom Bromley Collection Vintage Area Rug
Photo: amazon.com

A round area rug is a pretty pick for a small dining set. This round rug from Unique Loom features a delicate pattern to add a colorful backdrop to a breakfast nook or a bistro set. Made of 100 percent polypropylene with a cotton backing, it’s an easy-to-clean, stain-resistant, and low-shedding option. The low 0.33-inch pile makes it slightly more plush than a low-pile rug, but it also has low-maintenance benefits.

This rug comes in a 3-foot, 5-foot, or 8-foot size to suit different seating setups. It’s also available in rectangular or runner options in sizes ranging from 2 feet by 3 feet to 10 feet by 14 feet.

Product Specs

  • Material: Polypropylene
  • Pile height: 0.33 inch
  • Shape: Rectangular, runner, round

Pros

  • Elegant pattern
  • Several color options
  • Simple to clean

Cons

  • Limited round size options

Our Verdict

The nuLOOM Ethel Medallion Fringe Area Rug is an attractive choice for most traditional or transitional dining rooms with its resilient construction, low pile, and geometric take on a traditional medallion design. For those looking for a more economical price, the Artistic Weavers Klaudia Trellis Modern Area Rug offers another pretty pattern in a toned-down color scheme that suits many different interior design styles.

How We Chose the Best Rugs for Dining Rooms

With so many options on the market, shopping for dining room area rugs can feel like a big task. For many shoppers, style is a priority, so we chose a variety of attractive rugs that can fit with many interior design styles. Since rugs are often seen as a budget-friendly way to upgrade home flooring, we also stuck to affordable options with a few premium picks thrown into the mix.

Beyond their looks, two key functional features were important for dining room rugs to make the list: easy-to-clean materials and a low to medium pile. We stuck to stain-resistant materials with a reasonably low pile to make sure the rugs can hold up to high-traffic and mess-prone dining rooms. We also mainly stuck to patterned rugs which tend to be the best option for dining rooms as they are better at concealing messes so the rug will look nicer for longer.

FAQs

The right dining room area rug can transform your dining space and make it more inviting for daily use or for entertaining guests. Choosing the best rug for your dining space is often the hardest part. Read on for some frequently asked questions and answers on choosing and setting up your dining room rug.

Q. Should a dining table sit on a rug?

Whether a dining table sits on a rug is a personal choice. If you choose to include a rug in the dining room, the dining table is usually centered on the dining room rug with about 2 feet of space beyond each chair.

Q. What size rug should I have for a table that seats six?

For a rectangular table, an 8-foot by 10-foot rug is usually the ideal size for a table for six. For a round or oval table that sits six, make sure the rug is about 4 feet larger in diameter than the rug.

Q. How far should a rug stick out from a dining table?

For optimal placement, the rug should extend at least two feet from the dining table on all sides. This allows each diner to easily pull the chair in and out from the table without getting caught up in the edges of the rug.