Outdoor rug ideas – 10 easy ways to redesign your outdoor space

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  • Excited about the arrival of warmer weather and the new outdoor season? How about a new outdoor rug idea to freshen up your garden? Just as you create a new look indoors, there are some great designs that can transform outdoors as well. From large patio cover designs to smaller rugs that are great for layering, outdoor rugs are certainly cheaper and less hassle than replacing your patio or deck. A rug can also help to realize your garden ideas as it can divide a large space into a smaller zone.

    An outdoor rug idea can transform your outdoor space in an instant – and you can use the same design principles as you do indoors when choosing and arranging it. “I love the look an outdoor rug gives a garden,” says Pip Probert, founder of Outer Spaces and designer of Your Garden Made Perfect on BBC2. “You can give your garden such an inhabited feel.”

    Outdoor rug ideas

    Look for natural textures – perfect for semi-covered areas or cottage garden ideas, while those made from recycled materials are great for greening your garden. Apply the same design principles as indoors – a striped rug can make a narrow patio appear wider if laid with horizontal stripes, while drawing the eye to a different area if the stripes run away from you (vertically). Likewise, you can use a rug to bring different elements of your garden together, such as B. to enhance the colors of your plants.

    “If you have young children, then outdoor rugs are so handy,” says Victoria Wade, founder and landscape architect. “Our toddler daughter loves to sit on it on the patio.” Tasha Green, Director at Weaver Green; “An outdoor carpet should be water-repellent, UV-stable, mold-resistant and easy to clean.”

    For inspiration, we’ve put together our pick of the best outdoor rug ideas.

    1. An outdoor rug can also be practical

    Credit: Future PLC/Jamie Mason

    A garden rug isn’t just for decoration – if you have French windows or sliding doors leading out onto your patio, a rug or rug will help trap some of the dirt that comes from the constant flow of people in and out.

    Choose a design inspired by Mediterranean tiles in classic white and navy blue, which will be reflected in your choice of the best outdoor cushions and give your patio a lovely summer feel.

    2. Try a tiled carpet

    Corner patio with black and white geo-tile wall and matching tiles on the floor.  Modern corner sofa and potted tree

    Photo credit: Baked Tile Co

    Why not use patterned tiles to create a more permanent outdoor rug idea? First lay out your pattern and arrange your patio furniture around a square or rectangular patterned tile section. This makes for a much more durable “rug” – you add color and pattern to the floor with tiles.

    Look to rugs for inspiration for your tiled version – opt for either something symmetrical or random. You can even add a border of mosaics or simple tiles to draw attention to your exceptional outdoor rug. Choose non-slip tiles so that the area can be used in all weathers.

    Buy Now: Nostalgia Anti-Slip Diagonal Tiles, £43.47 per m², The Baked Tile Co

    3. Use an outdoor rug to add accents

    Black composite patio with modern black wicker sofa and coffee table on bright yellow outdoor rug

    Credit: Future PLC/Joanna Henderson

    Just as a rug can add that pop of color to a living space, so can a neutral patio. Go for a warm yellow that will enhance your garden’s natural lush greenery. Add a few coordinating cushions, planters and a throw and your garden will feel like it’s had a little makeover. Gray and yellow always go well together – but it might not be a combination you would choose indoors. Try an ocher rather than a sunny yellow that’s less expressive and more livable for a great boho garden idea. Choosing a carpet design with lots of white also helps.

    4. Top up for interest

    Outdoor corner sofa on a patio with a black fence behind it and layered rugs beneath the modern coffee table

    Photo credit: Danetti

    If you are looking for a garden rug idea that looks sophisticated, try layering two neutral color designs on top of each other to create a boutique hotel garden vibe. It’s a great way to expand your outdoor living space beyond the natural size of your corner sofa when thinking about choosing patio furniture.

    Use double-sided carpet tape to secure the edges and prevent them from curling up. Just make sure surfaces are completely dry before use and avoid using tape on painted or stained decking.

    Shop Now: Danetti Garden Rugs, £149 each, Danetti

    5. Start your scheme with a rug

    Scandinavian style patio area with white painted walls, potted tree and neutral accessories including a large outdoor rug

    Credit: Weaver Green

    A rug can really anchor that outdoor look by providing colour, pattern and texture, transforming a porch or patio into a usable outdoor area. Look for a Moroccan-inspired design to build your styling story around by adding a pouf, wicker chair and even outdoor wall decor ideas. The soothing palette of washed shades will make you feel instantly relaxed as you step outside for a moment of solitude first thing in the morning. A soft carpet underfoot means you don’t even have to put on your shoes!

    Think about the shape – a wide runner will draw attention to your door and make a visually inviting first impression for guests. Some runners can be up to 15 feet long – perfect if you have a large porch.

    Buy now: Kasbah Smoke rug, from €138, Weaver Green

    6. Move a rug around your yard

    Hammock in the trees at the edge of a meadow with lots of pillows and a rug underneath

    Credit: Future PLC/Jon Day

    Keep some outdoor rugs rolled up if you want to create a sunny nook on your lawn idea – imagine getting up from a nap in that hammock and sinking your toes into a super soft rug? Weight your rug on both sides with a stool or planter – you don’t want to chase it around the garden when the breeze picks up.

    Choose a palette inspired by a cottage garden, mixing delphinium blue, lavender and dusty pink with natural textures.

    7. Play with textures on an outdoor rug

    Elevated deck on a river with wood railings and chic tiki bar with two bar stools

    Credit: Future PLC/Joanna Henderson

    A garden rug gives you the opportunity to add a new texture – maybe you need a touch of natural jute or a softer weave? Maybe your patio idea is… too woody? An outdoor rug is an inexpensive way to change the feel of your space and add depth through a new texture.

    Need extra seating at your tiki bar? Why not encourage guests to sit on the floor with a soft rug and some floor pillows?

    8. Create a Scandi atmosphere

    Sofa with cream and brown cushions, coffee table, olive tree in a basket on a wooden porch outside of a white wood clad house.

    Credit: Future PLC/Joanna Henderson

    Take inspiration from a Scandi garden shed and create an outdoor living space that works from dawn to dusk. Along with plain outdoor furniture, a cozy jute outdoor rug underfoot provides a great texture base from which to build up by adding baskets, vases, cushions and throws to reinforce the relaxed look.

    Jute is a great all-natural carpet material, although it doesn’t fare as well in very humid climates. Ideally, use it on a semi-covered porch or patio, and if it does get soaked, lay it out in the sun to dry.

    9. Walk reversible

    Outdoor egg chair on a deck with fence and hedge behind.  Lime green carpet on the wooden deck

    Photo credit: B&Q

    With a reversible garden rug you get two looks for the price of one. Or why not buy two and use them to zone areas of your garden design idea and flip the design in one? This will help the zones flow but still be distinct. When it comes to rug size, a 230 x 160cm rug should be big enough for a loveseat sofa corner – try to put the sofa’s legs on the rug, this will help ‘ground’ it.

    Buy now: GoodHome Malaita Jungle reversible rug, £30, B&Q

    10. Think of the shape

    Covered patio with a neutral hammock and a round rug and moody garland lighting

    Photo credit: Beaumonde

    Not all garden rugs have to be square or rectangular. Play with shape and add interest to a covered patio idea with a circular design. Jute is a great material to create a rustic space that can be enhanced with lots of wicker baskets and planters.

    Need a quick fix for a garden event? Nothing prevents you from taking an indoor carpet outside for the event before brushing it down and then taking it back inside.

    How do I care for an outdoor rug?

    Waterproof outdoor rugs can be left outside all summer, but if yours gets wet, hang them on a line to dry. “We do not recommend leaving any of our rugs on the grass or on the ground for extended wet periods,” says Tasha Green, Director at Weaver Green. “Bring it in to wash/dry and store it until the weather improves and you can take it out again.”

    Tasha recommends when choosing a rug look for one that is UV stable so the colors last longer. “If your rug is going to be placed under a piece of furniture — say, a coffee table — turn it occasionally to give it as even exposure to the sun as possible.”

    Size, pattern, color… any tips or trends?

    “As long as the rug is UV stable (meaning it’s been treated with a stabilizer to protect it from long-term damage from UV light), you can choose any color or pattern,” says Tasha. “If not, then avoid bright colors as they will fade over time with exposure to the sun.” There is so much choice when it comes to size – even a balcony garden idea can benefit from a rug underfoot. Just like choosing an indoor rug, make sure your furniture touches the rug and that there is room to pull out chairs from an outdoor dining table and keep the chair feet on the rug.

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