March 9, 2012

Making a Temporary House a Home | Rugs

If you currently have get to live in base housing or practically anywhere overseas, you most likely do not have carpets. We actually have not had carpeting in our last three homes, so rugs have become essentials for us.

Like curtains, rugs work very well in softening a space. This one in our living area is one of my favorites. It is soft, plush and really cozy. My kids play on it. They even stack pillows and layers of blankets on it to lay on the floor and watch a movie. It wouldn't be quite so comfortable without this rug. We found this rug at IKEA in Sindelfingen. It came in several colors.

Rugs can also help to define a space. Our kitchen, living room, entryway and dining room are actually lumped together in one giant, difficult-to-arrange space. Having these coverings on the floor really help to separate the areas. This rug is a neutral, practical jute rug also from IKEA. I believe they had a few with different border colors.

Rugs can fill the void. Our apartment has a very long, kind of awkward entry way. This indoor/outdoor runner is just the right size to fill that space. The fact that it is water resistant is a fantastic bonus. German winters + ice + salt do not equal happy floors! This lovely runner was found in the Estate Sale section of Ballard Designs.

Most of our rugs are inexpensive and were found locally.  The only thing we did splurge on were the runners for our hallway. Due to the way our apartment is set up, you can hear everything going on in our home no matter where you may be. The hallway basically became a sound tunnel that would echo all of our sounds throughout the rest of the home. We knew we wanted thick runners to absorb a lot of that noise. We looked locally and didn't find anything that was visually acceptable for us. With the current exchange rate, we realized we'd end up paying just as much for something we didn't particularly love. So, we bit the bullet and ordered our runners from Pottery Barn. It was an investment. But, I am happy to say it has paid off already. Our home feels a bit more cozy and the runners have definitely helped with sound control.

Of course, rugs can be just plain functional as well. Our bathrooms are very strange sizes and shapes, so I had to be a bit more creative in there. I loved the idea of using indoor/outdoor rugs in here because they come in much larger and unique sizes than your typical bath rug. This particular rug was found at Mömax in Böblingen. You will see I have the same rug in different colors in our guest bath as well as the kitchen. Clearly, this rug works for us.

Here are a few before + after shots to show what a difference rugs can make.

The kids/guest bath before and after. This is another version of the indoor/outdoor rug from Mömax. This one is a warm taupe color.

The master bath before and after. Same Mömax rug. The version in the master bath has cool gray trim and woven throughout.

Finally, the kitchen before and after. Same rug, this one with black woven throughout.

One thing you'll notice in all three of these rooms is the same large, WHITE tile. It shows everything. It was getting very annoying seeing every speck of dust. And let's be real, who sweeps, dusts, vacuums everyday? I certainly don't. While I do still have to do those three things more often, these rugs truly help.

All in all, rugs can soften a home, hide a multitude of imperfections and deaden echoing noise. They are a great, inexpensive option to help make your temporary house feel more like home.