Spoak Your Space: Last Day to Win $5,000 - Nominate Yourself or a Friend for Spoak Your Space and Design the Space of Your Dreams. Apply Now
Design Inspo

What Are the Rug Under Bed Rules?

There are no real rules about what rug you put under your bed — only guidelines! Here’s how to find the right rug type and size for your home.

designed with spoak - watermark

If you also shudder when you hear talk of room design “rules,” don’t worry: We get you. By rules, we mean general guidelines, and by guidelines, we mean doing whatever you want. There are no real rules when it comes to bedroom flooring, but there are common ways we perceive space and principles that tend to please the eye and just “feel right.”

Are you in the market for a new rug to cover cold hardwood floors in your bedroom? Fab! Let’s consider both room design and floor space to find the perfect rug.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Anatomy of Your Bedroom Area Rug

Just as rugs help anchor the rest of your home decor, bedroom area rugs provide visual weight and balance when placed under a bed. The fact that they embrace your bed, which is the focal point of most bedrooms, shows how prominent a role they play in your design.

You May Need To Include a Rug Pad

If you’ve never been particularly thrilled with rug performance in the past, it may be because you didn’t have the right rug or rug pad. Rug pads beneath your rug can provide much-needed cushioning in areas where you want your feet to have a soft landing. A flat woven herringbone rug will feel much more luxe with a pad underneath it.

Besides providing cushion, they keep your rug from slipping or bunching up around the bed. If you want this gripping effect without the padding, try gripper tape on the bottom of your area rug. (You may only need it around the exposed edges.)

Get the Right Rug for Your Bedroom

Consider what you’re using your rug for and your bedroom space before searching for the best rug:

  • Your rug can protect the floor from heavy furniture (bed legs) or from spills.
  • Your rug can highlight your personal design style.
  • Your rug grounds the decor of the room, drawing your eye to the focal point.
  • Your rug can cover a case of bland wall-to-wall carpeting or imperfections in the flooring.
  • Your rug can reduce acoustic echos.
  • Your rug can exude comfort and keep your feet warm at night.

Know Rug Fiber Types for the Bedroom

The type of rug you choose for your bedroom won’t necessarily be the same kind you’d want in your living room or dining room. A bedroom rug won’t receive as much wear or as many potential spills (not excluding the occasional late-night glass of wine).

However, certain styles that are extra plush underfoot, like flokati or noodle wool shag rugs, are tricky to keep clean, especially with pets in the house. So opting for something washable and natural that’s still easy to care for is a smart bet.

Choose Rug Shape Based on Bedroom Shape

A general rule of thumb for the right size rug is to make sure your rug somewhat mirrors the size and shape of the bedroom. So if you have a small square bedroom, a square rug might look best in it. If you have a larger rectangular room, that larger rectangular rug will add a five-star radial balance to the space.

Consider Your Rug Placement

Bedroom design by Shannon Dyson

Before we look at typical rug sizes, let's consider the placement of your rug and which look you prefer so you know what measurements to look for. Many designers say that you need at least 24 inches of the rug showing around the edges of your bed for the room to feel balanced, but you know what they say about rules being made to be broken!

Consider this design perspective, along with your bed and room dimensions, as you look for rugs. Better yet, slip those numbers and images into Spoak’s layout tool to get a clear picture of your space’s potential.

A Rug That Covers the Entire Room

If you want a rug that provides all the usual comforts of an under-bed rug but also covers flooring you no longer love, go with a large rug that covers the entire room. Check that two to five inches of the bare floor shows around the edge of the room. All the doors should be able to open over the rug without any snags.

The one hesitation you may have about a huge bedroom area rug is the placement of other bedroom furniture. The good news is that it’s a snap:

  • Your nightstands can rest comfortably on your large rug. Try for two to three inches of rug extending to their sides.
  • Place the dresser at least six to 12 inches from the rug to keep everything visually proportionate.

Let Your Rug Embrace Only the Bed

Your rug might run underneath your entire bed, from the wall past the foot of the bed. If so, be sure the size of the rug allows enough fabric to extend from the sides of your bed. When you get up in the morning, you should be able to make the bed and slip on your slippers without stepping off the plush rug.

Place Your Rug Under Two-Thirds of the Bed

Remember our discussion about rules? Well, this is a time when the rule of thirds is used to create a feeling of harmony.

You can get this benefit and use a significantly smaller rug by spreading it under the bottom two-thirds of your bed. Bring the edge of the rug up to within six inches of the front of your nightstands. More fabric will extend from under the foot of the bed. The bench at the end of your bed will comfortably fit on your rug now.

Layer Rugs for Depth and Texture

Layering rugs for textural and visual contrast is a clever way to up the rug’s impact. It lets you get away with bringing in the rugged qualities of that jute area rug by softening it with a buttery soft Moroccan diamond print topper. Try to let at least two to three inches of your base-layer rug peek out from under the edges of the top layer.

Choosing the Right Size Rug for Your Bed

All of the above variables need to be considered, along with the size of your bed frame. You also need to think about the furniture near the bed and how it will sit on the rug.

Use a Large Rug for the King Size Bed

A king-size bed is 76 x 80 inches; a large rug of 9 x 12 feet should run comfortably under the nightstands and extend around the edges, an amount that any designer would approve of. Try running the rug under only a portion of the bed. If you have the space at the end of the bed, you can totally expose more of that glorious handwoven kilim rug exposed.

A 9 x 12-foot rug is a standard size, but feel free to go with a 12 x 15 feet or larger one. When in doubt, size your rug up!

Try a Medium to Large Rug for a Queen Size Bed

Queen-size beds are 60 x 80 inches and make rug shopping even easier. An 8 x 10-foot rug just gives you 18 inches of rug extending from each side and plenty at the foot of the bed. That size means it can run from the wall to the end of the bed, but a 9 x 12-foot would give plenty of space.

If you’d like the rug to only encompass a portion of the bed — which will be equally fabulous — this is an excellent opportunity to use a round rug. Place it two-thirds of the way under your bed, and as with the king, you can always go much larger.

Get Lots of Options With a Full-size Bed

Your full-size bed will require an even smaller rug of 54 x 75 inches. An 8 x 10-foot rug would be a comfortable and roomy size to hold your nightstands and extend well past the edges of the bed. An eight-foot round rug would also be an excellent choice if it extended under the bed until reaching the nightstands.

Anchor One or More Twin Beds Any Way You Like

Your twin bed is 39 x 75 inches and would comfortably fit on an 8 x 10-foot rug with plenty of room for a nightstand. In the case of two twin beds for a shared space, an 8 x 10-foot rug wouldn’t allow the edge of the rug to extend from the sides of the bed. Instead, the rug will take center stage between the two beds under a shared nightstand.

In this scenario, a 9 x 12-foot rug would allow plenty of space between beds, plus extend a few inches from each side, and the 12 x 15-foot would tick every box. Pulling the rug only partway under the beds is a viable look for double beds, and if you make it two separate round rugs, you can add interesting curves to break up all of the rectangles.

Whatever Your Bed Size, Jazz It Up With a Rug

Do you already have a mental list of how you want to rethink flooring in your bedrooms or a plan to swap rugs between rooms to better fit your interior design? Or maybe you’re still searching for the rug of your dreams. No matter what, you can find the missing perfect ingredient for any home reno project in our product discovery feed.

Photo Credit: (Left) Emily Henderson


The fascinating history of flokati, the original shag rug | Curbed

Using the Rule of Thirds in Graphic Design | The Noun Project

Mattress Sizes | Sleep Foundation

Join Spoak to start mocking up your bedroom plans today.

Date Posted
May 22, 2023



No items found.

Try it out

Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽
Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽ Spoaken word ✽
Join Spoak

Take your love of interior design to the next level with Spoak.

We are an online interior design studio for enthusiasts and professionals. Get a real-world design education, easy-to-use tools, job opportunities, and a tight-knit community. All levels welcome.

Join now