Finding the perfect rug to complete your home is always an exciting time, after all, we believe that at the heart of every home is a beautiful handmade rug. However, once you lay the rug upon your floors you may begin to wonder, how can you keep your rug looking its best self?
When in doubt – use an underlay
An underlay is often a second thought when it comes to purchasing a rug, even though they can be crucial in maintaining the look of your rug. An underlay will maintain the life of your rug and avoid slippage, especially if you don’t have heavy furniture on top of it to anchor it down. When your rug is constantly slipping around on the floor it can not only stretch the rug out of shape but can sometimes also damage the floor underneath. Additionally, a good rug underlay will help protect your rug from wear and tear by absorbing most of the impact from foot traffic, acting almost like a shock absorber for your rug. An added bonus is that an underlay can add a sponge-like impression under foot and will help reduce the regularity of pop ups that will naturally occur with foot traffic and the rug moving around on the floor, no matter how subtlety.
Protect your rug
No matter the colour or fibre of your rug, we are big believers in protecting your rug with a fibre protector. This will not only give your rug added protection from spills and stains, it will also help to reduce fading caused by UVA and UVB rays and fight against mould, mildew and bacteria.
Rotating your rug
Aside from using a fibre protector, rotating your rug regularly is another easy way to protect your rug from sun fading and high traffic impacts. The frequency you will need to rotate your rug will be dependant on the amount of natural light in your space and foot traffic your rug will receive.
Rugs are an investment piece of every home; therefore, it is essential to take care of them correctly to ensure their longevity. The next step for maintaining your rug once it's in your home is to ensure you are vacuuming it at least once or twice a week. Dirt, dust and other debris can rub against the fibre of a wool rug and damage them, through regular vacuuming this can be avoided. Regular vacuuming can also help with shedding – in the first few years of a rug’s life it will she the excess wool fibres left over from the weaving process; this is a natural characteristic of your rug that will subside over time.
When vacuuming, you must ensure the height is set to ‘high’ with the brushes up, so that the rotating brush does not create excessive agitation on the rug. Too much agitation can lead to damage of the fibres, and increased pilling. Alternating the direction of the vacuums path also helps to prevent the fibres from being crushed. It is also important to ensure that when you are vacuuming to always go with the pile and not against it when possible - for some rugs such as our loose handwoven pieces it is a little harder to distinguish. You can decipher the way the pile is going by lightly running your hand against the rug.
We also suggest turning wool rugs upside down and vacuuming the underside. The more you vacuum, the quicker the shedding of loose fibres will subside, however they never stop completely.
Pilling and pop ups are natural characteristics of handmade rugs and can both be fixed and maintained easily. For pilling, which is the fuzzy appearance on the top of your rug when it experiences some agitation or high foot traffic, can be fixed by simply give your rug a haircut. All you will need to do is grab a pair of scissors and trim the pilling to pile height, once done you can vacuum up the excess fibres. For pop ups, you have two options for maintenance. If the yarn is long enough, you can simply push it back under the weave (sometimes you may need to use a little bit of fabric glue should it keep coming back up), or you can cut the loose yarn to pile height. We can assure you by trimming the pop up and trimming the pilling your will not harm the integrity of your rug, this is just another way you can show your rug some love and care.
Aside from regular vacuuming, we recommend having your rug professionally cleaned approximately once a year. This is due to some rug fibres needing a thorough cleaning to remove general grime that a vacuum cannot touch. Some fibres can be tricky to clean and work with, which is why professional cleaning is usually the best option.
For small stains and marks, you must act quickly and follow the instructions on your rug care card that arrived with your rug. This will also be easy to manage if you have had your rug micro sealed with a fibre protector as the fibres will be sealed and less likely to absorb spills quickly. You can also view some tips and tricks for cleaning your rug on our FAQ page.
By following the above information and abiding by your care card you will be able to enjoy and easily extend the longevity of your rug.