We’ve all fans of hallway runners—but they’ve expanded beyond those corners of the home. These days, the possibilities are virtually endless when it comes to where you place runners, how you style them, and what kind of runner speaks to your home. Here, three interior designers share their favorite runners from Jaipur Living, as well as how to choose and style them.
Start With Sizing
As with any rug, the first step to choosing a runner is selecting the correct length and width. “If you are placing the runner in a hallway, I typically go 2 to 3 inches off the walls for the runner width and 1 to 2 inches off the opening of the space for the length,” says Lauren Davenport of Davenport Designs. “You want to make sure your runner is not too long or too short, or the edge of the rug does not fall into a traffic pathway.”
Think Outside The Hallway
While runners are traditionally installed in hallways, they’re also great ways to make an impact in other spaces. “I think runners are a great way to add a pop of dimension, texture, pattern, and color to a smaller space, so take some risks,” says designer Kate Lester, who partnered with Jaipur Living to create Harman Hold, a collection of runners with a built-in backing that means no rug pad is required.
“I love Harman Hold runners in kitchens, laundry rooms, and even longer bathrooms. The integrated padding makes them super comfortable and prevents them from sliding around,” Lester explains.
Designer Kristin Kong of K Kong Designs agrees. “We love to add a colorful runner to a laundry or mud room, to install runners on stairways, and to layer runners over rugs and neutral wall-to-wall carpeting to create interest.” When it comes to stair runners or wall-to-wall carpeting, designers agree that custom rugs are a great way to fit a space to a tee. “When installing runners on stairways, safety is the first consideration so I look for rugs with a looped pile,” adds Kong.
Play With Color And Pattern
For Kong, runners are a blend of form and function. “Runners have so many possibilities when styling a home that adds color, texture, and an artistic pop while providing functionality,” she says. “A patterned runner is great in a kitchen between a sink and an island or in a longer entryway,” adds Lester. “Elect for something vibrant for a little bit of wow factor.”
Davenport utilizes runners as a layering tool in a room’s overall design. “I always make sure that the runner is another layer in the space and not the showstopper,” she advises. “Look to the colors and patterns in your space and then pull in colors from your decor for the runner. If you love color and the rest of your space is neutral, then this would be a good opportunity to introduce color.”
For Lester, choosing the right runner all comes down to how you’re using the space. “Runners in a kitchen, for example, tend to take a beating, so I always suggest something more durable or stain resistant so you can quickly spot clean,” she says. Davenport often looks to indoor/outdoor rugs for the kitchen—or 100% wool or polyester rugs, which are durable and easy to clean, while “for bathrooms, you want to make sure that it will be soft under your feet.”
See also: The Guide: 5 Steps To Easy Rug Cleaning
“I typically look for natural materials that are pet and kid-friendly and will stand the test of time,” Kong adds. “In certain areas of the home that are high-traffic, we look for lower pile options to accommodate daily use and doorways.”
“I love the way that the pad comes integrated Harman Hold runners so you don’t have to worry about finding the right size and type of rug pad to fit your runner. Plus, no more adjusting and trimming pads that come loose.”
“Someplace in Time is one of my favorites. It’s a classic, low pile with a ton of color and pattern to hide dirt and wear.”
“This Jaida runner is soft, subtle, and plush—great for a bathroom. This runner could also be layered in a neutral scheme over grasscloth to add texture or alongside a bed over wall-to-wall neutral carpeting.”
“I like a sisal runner in hallways where there is not a lot of traffic. This Naturals Tobago runner has a nice pattern, but the natural color and design will work in any space, whether it’s traditional, contemporary, or transitional. This would be great on a stair runner as well.”
“This Catalyst runner is a fun animal print that is neutral enough to add another layer to your decor while still staying neutral.”
“The geometric pattern and neutral colors of this Lore runner will add interest to your space. A bonus is that this is pet and kid friendly!”
“I love the muted colors of the tan, gold, and gray in this Canteena runner. This would work well in more traditional or transitional space.”