Brown is a popular couch color for a reason — the versatile neutral works with a wide variety of decor styles, and it doesn't require as much maintenance as a light color like white to continue looking fresh and clean. Whether you choose to layer it with other earth tones or amp it up with something bright, brown goes well with so many different hues, you may have trouble narrowing down the options. So when choosing a rug to complement your sofa, take time to think about which pairings make sense for your particular style.
"The color, style, texture and even material of the rug will depend on the vibe you want for the room," says designer Lindsey Pedey, who shares her custom home on Instagram. "Brown is a neutral, so don't be afraid to have fun with your rug selection."
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A good place to start is to think about how you want the room to feel. "A natural rug like jute feels beachy, while a red vintage rug would look great in a more eclectic space," said Pedey.
Pay attention to the undertones of your couch, too — does it lean warm or cool? Browns with a hint of orange are considered warm-toned, while brown-gray couches lean cool. Or, think about the color wheel. While brown isn't technically on the color wheel, it can be considered a darker shade of orange. This makes blue its complementary color, and the two make a striking pairing when featured together in a decor scheme.
"Opposites attract!" said Pedey. "Lately, I've been loving mixing warm and cool tones. Try a steel blue with some texture or a fun print. The checkered pattern is really on trend right now, too."
For a more monochromatic look, consider pairing your brown couch with a rug that features darker reds and yellows. If you have children or pets or just don't want a high-maintenance rug, "don't go super white," Pedey advises. "It will get dingy fast."
While color is one important factor of your room decor, it's also vital to consider rug construction and material. For example, in homes with kids or pets, flat, natural-weave or low-pile rugs will be easier to maintain than shag rugs, which are harder to clean. Flatter rugs also provide a more stable surface, which means less risk of tripping.
Read on for 17 rug colors that will look beautiful with your brown couch.
17 Rug Colors to Pair With a Brown Couch
1. Light Gray
Brown and gray are a classic pairing. A light gray rug can brighten up a room while still giving it depth — plus it's easier to maintain than white. Look for options with texture or other colors woven in for added interest.
Get the look: Article Texa Rug in Fog Gray, $299-$599
Magenta might seem like an extreme option, but when paired with a cool, muted brown sofa as seen here, it provides a pop of color without overpowering the room. In this glam-eclectic living space designed by Lisa & Leroy, the pattern on the rug ties it in with the brown and gray accents throughout the room.
Get the look: Rugs.com Fleur 9x12 Rug, $738
Cream lightens up the look of a room without the starkness that pure white can have. Here, the braided jute rug adds an earthy, natural vibe that pairs well with a brown leather couch. Cream rugs of all kind — no matter the material, whether solid or ornately patterned — will work beautifully with a brown sofa.
For a variation on the monochromatic look, accent your brown couch with a rust red rug. Because brown is basically a darker shade of orange, it sits beside red on the color wheel, making the two colors a natural pairing. A patterned rug that incorporates earthy oranges and reds will create an analogous color scheme and instant cohesion.
Get the look: Ruggable Mandalore Scarlet Red Rug in 8x10, $519
A solid blue rug is a great companion to a brown couch, but a patterned rug with a combination of colors — as seen in this living room by Chloe Berk — can add more visual interest to a room. Which blue you choose will depend on the specific hue of your couch. In this living room, the furniture and art are all neutral, while the blue and pink rug adds a dose of playful color.
Rugs made with natural fibers that retain their original tan color, like the jute rug shown here, can enhance a number of decor styles — everything from beachy and boho to modern and classic. Keep your palette restrained with shades of brown and white, or use your couch and rug as a canvas to layer on bold colors.
Get the look: JONATHAN Y Natural Fiber 8 x 10 Jute Area Rug, $224
7. Charcoal Gray
A brown leather couch paired with charcoal gray creates a masculine vibe. This hue can also be a good alternative to a black rug if you're after a slightly softer look. Dark colors generally work best in otherwise light and airy rooms, unless you're going for an intentionally moody look.
While not for everyone, a bright white rug paired with a brown couch is a classic choice for a neutral living room. Pile length has a major impact on the style — for example, a white shag rug would create a softer, more feminine look than the low-pile one shown above. Keep in mind, however, that high-pile options will be harder to clean and may begin to look gray in high-traffic areas.
Get the look: IKEA Vollerslev High Pile Rug in White, $199
9. Black and White
If white alone is too plain for your style, black and white or grayscale rugs add a dash of visual interest without imposing on a simple color palette. Look for rugs with an interesting pattern — black and white lends itself well to modern designs. Consider layering geometric prints in different colors, as shown here with the rug and throw pillow.
Brown-on-brown can work as long as the hues and undertones are a fit. Choose a patterned rug with multiple shades of brown to avoid a flat look. The rug in this room by Reneé Rodenkirchen features cream and black alongside brown for a modern, near-monochromatic look.
11. Animal Print
The natural colors of a brown couch mesh well with animal prints. Cow hides are popular, but fabric rugs in zebra, leopard, and other prints work well, too. For a vegan approach, look for a well-made faux hide rug.
Get the look: IKEA Koldby Cowhide, $159
When paired with a brown sofa, a purple rug can appear more like a neutral than a focal point. Deep purples in particular, like the burgundy shown here, bring warmth and coziness to a room, along with a pop of color. Look for a patterned rug with brown or orange accents for an extra cohesive look.
13. Light Pink
Despite being traditionally pegged as feminine, pink actually works more as a neutral color with the right decor — particularly light, dusty pinks, as shown in this space by Samantha Santana. The pretty hue looks especially trendy in a pastel color scheme, paired with colors like the sage green and pale peach in this living room.
14. Light Blue
Blues and browns are opposites on the color wheel, which make them a complementary pairing. Light blues in particular are a good option for creating a bright and airy environment. Here, a pale blue rug with accents in darker blue and mustard yellow makes for a soothing atmosphere with visual interest.
Get the look: Ruggable Marie Pale Blue Rug 8x10, $459
15. Aegean Blue
Deeper shades, like this aegean blue, pair well with dark brown. The color combination feels soft and welcoming, especially when combined with cozy fabrics. It can skew on the moody side, but in a cozy library, like this one by M&P Design Group, the vibe feels just right.
Yellow works well with brown thanks to its neighborly position with orange on the color wheel. With the right pairing of shades and undertones, the combination can appear cohesive without looking monochromatic. In this space by M&P Design Group, a painting of a lion encapsulates the entire room's color scheme, from the light brown couch to the brown-black shelves.
Get the look: Hashtag Home Coughlin Area Rug in Yellow/White/Blue, $249.99
Brown frequently appears alongside all shades of green in nature, and the color combo looks just as natural in interior design. For less of a in-the-forest look, go for a rug in a blue-green shade like the aqua one in this loft by Jessie Ruane. It coordinates with the sage green accent wall and olive throw blankets and pillows without looking too matchy-matchy.
Get the look: Birch Lane Lavin Area Rug in Dark Aqua, $519-1,550
Rug Colors That Go With a Brown Couch
A brown couch is a neutral that gives you a solid starting point from which to design a room in any style you want. While it can be paired with earthy colors for a mellow, neutral vibe, a brown couch can easily be styled with bolder colors without overpowering a room.
Here are some of the best rug colors to accent your brown couch:
- Light gray
- Charcoal gray
- Animal print
- Light pink
- Light blue
- Aegean blue