Can You Place An Area Rug Under The Coffee Table Only?

Can you place an area rug under only your coffee table? You've seen how rugs often extend beneath the other furniture, but that's not your style, or maybe your rug is small, but you love it. We've checked with the experts to see what they had to say and have the information for you here.

This is one of those topics that there are mixed feelings on. Some people say absolutely not and that your area rug should be large enough to put at least the two front legs of your sofa on it. But there are also plenty of great design examples where the designer has placed a smaller rug in a living room arrangement, and only the coffee table rests on it. So really, it's up to you and your room's design.

We're going to look at some examples of various area rug configurations in this post. We're also going to talk about why you might want a living room rug, where your couch should go in relation to an area rug, if they have standard sizes, and if there's a good way to figure out what size rug you need for your rooms. So please, keep reading.

Luxurious contemporary living room with huge windows, gray sofa, and two wooden chairs, Can You Place An Area Rug Under The Coffee Table Only?

Placing An Area Rug Under Your Coffee Table Only

This is a surprisingly controversial issue for some design aficionados. Some are horrified at the thought of a tiny rug centered under your coffee table, but then others have no problem with it. The naysayers feel it looks disproportional. But those who like the look have found ways to make it work. We've got some examples for you here.

Avoid A Trip Hazard

Maybe you don't want to worry about tripping on an area rug, and you like the look of a fun, shaggy rug. Placing it only under the coffee table gives you the look you want without worrying about the trip danger.

Fuzzy shag rugs are fun and soft, but they can be a trip hazard if not placed correctly. This one is the right size for going beneath a coffee table at 2 x 4 feet.

Click here for this on Amazon.

One Of A Kind Rugs

Perhaps you have a gorgeous antique rug that's been passed down through your family for generations. You want it in the living room, but it won't work as a full area rug. This is another example of when this can work. 

Layered Rugs

Another thought is layering. If you have carpet rather than hardwoods, you could have a small rug beneath your coffee table. Or you could have a larger area rug in a neutral color with something bright and cheery below your coffee table. In this case, an oddly shaped animal skin rug is sitting directly below the coffee table on top of another area rug.

This faux-cowhide rug is an excellent piece for layering on top of a larger area rug. Its unique shape will highlight a beautiful coffee table.

Click here for this on Amazon.

Only The Coffee Table Sits On It

In this room, though the area rug is larger than the coffee table, the coffee table is the only furniture piece that sits on the rug. This is an example of a slightly larger area rug used similarly. We find it very appealing and looks beautiful in this room.

This 3' x 5' jute rug is similar to the one in the room above. This is about the right size if you want something to house only your coffee table but extend out around it.

Click here for this on Amazon.

Why Have A Living Room Rug?

Modern luxurious contemporary living room with white painted walls, wooden flooring, and a light gray colored sectional sofa

Rugs serve a variety of purposes. They can dampen sound in a noisy space. They can add color to drab interiors. And they can add some cushion under bare feet. In the living room, they can work for all these reasons. But they can also be used to define space. A rug in front of your couches signifies the seating arrangement. A cute round rug between two armchairs also helps define the space.

But probably the main reason to have a living room rug is that they look beautiful. A living room rug can really showcase your style and add a layer of depth to your design.

Should Couch Legs Rest On An Area Rug?

Luxurious contemporary living room with huge windows, gray sofa, and two wooden chairs, Can You Place An Area Rug Under The Coffee Table Only?

There is a common preconception that all furniture legs should rest on the area rug. But just like anything in design, this rule is made to be broken. Though some people will rest all four couch legs on the area rug, you can also get away with only putting two legs on the area rug.

Interior of a gorgeous white themed living room with white curtains, beige colored sectional couch, and wooden laminated flooring

With this sectional, the rug only extends slightly beneath the pieces. It is not entirely under the sofa or the ottoman piece, and it works beautifully.

Modern dark interior of a contemporary living room with a dark leather sofa and a dark abstract sofa

If you have an unusually shaped rug like the rug in this living room, you may not have it under any of the larger furniture pieces, and that's okay too. The thing about design is it is in the eye of the beholder. If it works for you, then it works!

Do Area Rugs Have Standard Sizes?

There are many standard sizes for rugs. Let's take a look at them.

Runner Sizes

Runner rugs are long narrow rugs that are perfect for use in high-traffic hallways. They are also great if you have a passageway behind your sofa. The typical sizes for runner rugs are two to three feet wide and anywhere from six to fourteen feet long.

Small Area Rugs

Small area rugs can be used in kitchens, bathrooms, in a compact apartment. Anywhere you need a bit of cover but don't have space for a vast rug, these sizes may work. 4' x 4' square rugs are popular, as are 4' round rugs. For the doorway, you may choose a 3' x 5' rectangle or a kidney-shaped rug.

Living Room Rug Sizes

The most common sizes of rug for living room arrangements are as follows: 5' x 7', 8' x 10', 10' x 14'. Each of these sizes is standard and easy to find in a variety of online shopping. Here is a link to one-of-a-kind rugs at

How Do I Choose The Right Size Rug For My Room?

Some of this decision is what you want, along with your budget for your rug. For instance, if you opt for a smaller rug for cost-savings in your living room, a good guideline is for it to be at least as long as your sofa or close to it. Another consideration is where you want the legs of your furniture to sit. If you prefer the look of everything being on the rug, then that will dictate the size you need.

If you're looking for cost-savings in the bedroom, you may choose to simply put a runner on either side of the bed rather than having an area rug that goes beneath it. Otherwise, you want a rug that's going to extend about three to four feet out from either side of the bed. A larger bed means a larger rug.

If you're choosing a rug for the dining room, you want to make sure your chairs have adequate clearance so that they're not half on and half off of an area rug. This could cause them to feel tippy and off-balance.

The Right Rug Can Make Your Room Shine

As you've figured out, the design is very much in your control. You can choose to follow conventional rules or decide to buck trends when it comes to your coffee table placement on your area rug.

If you've enjoyed this post here at, we do hope you'll check out a few of our other posts we think you'll love.

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