Underfoot: How To Marry Soft And Hard Surfaces

Torn between the look of hard surface and the comfort of carpet? Marry the benefits of hard and soft surfaces with a beautifully crafted area rug. Whether there’s a preference for hardwood, tile, or an engineered hard surface, the addition of an area rug brings depth to a space and adds instant interest.

Mix Textures To Create Interest
High style is achieved by mixing a variety of textures. “The key to designing a space is to find a balance between design elements and visual interest,” explains Kevin Gregory, the creator of AllDay Industry. Gregory creates the aesthetic plans for dozens of NYC restaurant projects every year and says his approach works equally well in non-commercial spaces.

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The Area Rug Does It All
The foundation of a room is its flooring. “Choose colors and materials that create balance within the space,” Gregory says. “The use of bright colors and bold textures should be offset by a color palette of neutrals and warm tones as well as a material selection drawn from natural materials.”

Wood, stone, and some engineered floors provide that warm, neutral base that Gregory mentions. Adding texture and color via area rugs changes the dynamic of the space, softening it or creating vibrancy.

Tina Ramchandani of Tina Ramchandani Creative layers area rugs with other textures to create a warm, relaxing environment. “Our interiors are comprised of modern forms, which are often clean, hard lines,” she explains. “We soften these hard lines and surfaces with plush, textured fabrics that allow the design to shine without overpowering with patterns.”

In a bedroom, an area rug provides softness underfoot and mutes echoes to create a cozy, comfortable space. In the kitchen, the area rug creates interest among the standard kitchen materials. “Wood, marble, and metals are key elements of kitchen design and often serve as the predominant materials and palette,” says Gregory. “Utilizing subtle details will add interest to these materials and create a high level of visual interest in the space.”

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