Whether you're a renter or a homeowner, have nice floors or ... well, not-so-nice, you don't need a giant area rug to complete your living room look. Depending on your space, a small, narrow, or round rug can work just as well. In fact, it's time to forget all of the old-school rug-styling rules you've heard over the years and try one of these nine modern living room rug ideas instead.
1. Layered Rugs
Layering rugs is a great way to show off your beloved rug collection, cozy up a room, or make a small rug work in a big space. It's also great for mixing patterns and textures, like this colorful combo from Jenny Komenda over at Juniper Home.
2. Rectangular Rug
Contrary to old-school interior design rules, a rectangular rug, or even an oversize runner, is the perfect living room rug idea. The elongated shape helps to define a seating area in a narrow space, like the cozy apartment of Reserve Home's Mallory Fletchall.
Get the look: AllModern Lederer Off-White Area Rug, starting at $93.99
3. Bright Pink Rug
A bright pink rug in the living room might seem like a bit much, but that's kind of the point. It's an easy way to add a pop of color and personality to an otherwise neutral space, and a distressed or over-dyed style can make it feel more timeless than trendy.
4. Flokati Rug
A flokati rug instantly adds warmth and texture. And this gorgeous find from the new Joanna Gaines collection at Anthropologie is no exception, with a subtle texture that can work in just about any space.
5. Round Rug
Round rugs shouldn't be relegated to the dining room. Try one in the living room, especially if you have a sectional sofa or a space with a lot of straight lines and hard angles.
Get the look: West Elm Lucent Round Rug in Frost Gray, $224
6. Overlapping Rugs
Slightly different from layered rugs — usually a smaller rug over a larger rug — this living room rug ideas involves partially overlapping your woven beauties to give you more floor coverage, like in this project designed by Amber Lewis.
7. Floral Rug
Traditional floral rugs are sometimes overly ornate and, in turn, feel dated. But the new collection from Rifle Paper Company features flowers in a fresh and modern way.
Get the look: Rifle Paper Co. Floral Vines Ivory, starting at $100
8. Cowhide Rug
In addition to being versatile, durable, and just the right amount of edgy, cowhides can help soften the feel of a boxy, modern space. If you want to max out on natural textures and add warmth and depth to a really big room, layer a cowhide (or a faux cowhide!) over a big jute rug.
Get the look: IKEA Koldby Cowhide Rug, $169
9. Jute Rug
Another gorg living room rug idea: a jute rug. They make a great base for layering, but the classic textile is fabulous on its own, too. And it's perfect in a light and airy room like this one from designer Melanie Burstin.
Emily Farris lives in a century-old Arts & Crafts bungalow in Kansas City, MO with her burly husband, toddler son, and two rowdy rescue mutts. She's written for Bon Appetit, Food & Wine, and The Cut. When not busy cleaning up after somebody, she's posting about drinks and decor on Instagram @theboozybungalow.