Haley Gaetani | August 04 2016
Carpet can bring beauty, warmth, and comfort to any room in your home, but the task of choosing which carpet is right for a certain area can be challenging. Most people dread the process of carpet shopping because the pros and cons of each type can become overwhelming, and can also fluctuate depending on where the carpet is installed. Sounds like a pain, huh? Hopefully these tips will help make the process run more smoothly.
For starters, there are a couple of things to take into consideration from the get-go when shopping for carpet: color, fiber, and design. The carpet color you choose should be based off of personal preference, but it can affect the overall feel of a room tremendously. Carpet can either be solution dyed or topically dyed to get its color. Solution dyed fiber strands are dyed all the way through. For example, think of a carrot. If you cut a carrot in half, its color stays consistent throughout the entire thing. Solution dyed fiber works great if you’re looking for something with fade and bleach resistance. Topically dyed fiber strands are originally white in color, and then the surface of it gets dyed. This is comparable to a radish, which is red on the outside and white on the inside if you cut it open.
As far as fiber type goes, they can either be natural or synthetic and can be cut into cut pile, loop pile, or cut and loop styles which all have their own unique benefits. These different cuts vary in durability and texture and each kind performs best in certain types of rooms. When carpet is manufactured, fiber strands are sewn into a backing material which creates thousands of loops. When the loops are cut to create individual strands, it’s called cut pile. Cut pile carpets are extremely versatile and known as the softest type of carpet on the market. Loop pile carpet has a knobby appearance made by each tuft being brought back into the backing. The loops can be the same height or they can vary to create a pattern or to add more texture. Loop pile carpet is usually the most durable. These two cuts can also be combined to create cut and loop style carpet. This type of carpet is good at hiding traffic patterns in a room and tends to be the most visually interesting as it’s often used for a wide variation of designs and textures.
Carpet design is usually a factor based on preference as well, but certain designs/patterns tend to look better in certain spaces of a home. There’s a huge variety of carpet designs to choose from, so I’ll describe what’s best for certain areas during the upcoming breakdown by room.
Soft and comfortable are of top priority when choosing carpet for a bedroom. A solid, light, neutral color is always a good choice and is often seen in most modern day bedrooms. To create a sense of comfort, a thicker cut pile carpet with longer fiber stands is usually your best option. If the bedroom is a kid’s room, you may want to make sure the carpet you’re purchasing has built in stain resistance since it’ll be more susceptible to spills.
Family and rec rooms tend to have the most traffic in a home, so something more durable and stain resistant is always a good idea. Loop and cut carpet with dense textures hold up well to a lot of traffic too. Darker or multi-colored carpet is also more forgiving to everyday mess. Keep in mind, the more textured or twisted the fiber strands in a carpet are, the less foot prints and vacuum cleaner marks they’ll show.
Basement, theater rooms, and offices:
Loop pile carpet is a great choice for basements, theater rooms, and offices. This type of carpet is low to the ground and low maintenance. It’s always a good idea to use a good quality carpet cushion underneath loop pile carpet to help the overall life and performance of the carpeting. Since the sub flooring in basements are made of cement, there tends to be more moisture in basements than any other room in a home. With that said, it’s important to avoid natural fibers when choosing carpet because they can become moldy. “Office to home carpet,” is perfect to use in theater rooms or home offices if you’re looking for something knowing it won’t be lounged on often.
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