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9 Classic Rug and Paint Color Pairs + How to Pick Them

A classic rug is the foundation of a room – it defines and grounds the space and pulls all the pieces together.  We often build our paint palette from the rug, but you don’t need to spend a fortune when you pick a rug.  We have picked 9 affordable classic and timeless rugs at budget prices.

Studio McGee living room with white area rug
Source – Studio McGee

How to Pick a Classic Rug

The first step is to choose the right size.  The biggest design mistake that I see is that people pick a rug that is too small.  Most living rooms and dining rooms should have at least an 8×10 rug with at least 18 inches between the rug and wall.

For a dining room, the table and chairs should all be on the rug.  In a living room, at least the front legs of the furniture should be on the rug,  In a bedroom, 2/3 of the bottom of the bed should be on the rug with 18-24 inches of rug surrounding the bed.

The rug you pick should have the color palette that makes you happy. If your room is near the kitchen, it should match the hard finishes (countertops and backsplash).  Also consider your fireplace tile or stone colors in a living room.

Once you pick a rug, use the colors in the rug as a starting place for your wall colors.

Make a statement with your color palette.


9 Affordable Classic Rug and Paint Color Pairs

These are favorite affordable timeless rug and paint color pairs. Most of the rugs come in several sizes, and remember, the paint colors are just guidance.  You could pick another color from the rug for your room.  As always, don’t forget to test your paint colors!

Safavieh Handcrafted Moroccan Geometric Premium Wool Area Rug 

The first rug is one of my favorites and pairs beautifully with Hale Navy (HC-154) for a dramatic room.  Consider creamy white or blue gray sofas with a warm wood coffee table for the room.  You can use Hale Navy as an accent wall, or paint the room if you have enough light. Learn about how to work with a dark wall color here.

blue and white area rug

Benjamin Moore Hale Navy HC-154
Hale Navy HC-154

Safavieh Kids Collection Handmade Barcode Stripe Wool

This classic rug isn’t just for kids, and we paired it with Sherwin Williams Zurich White (SW 7636), a soft pale green-gray that will read almost white.  It’s a beautiful color!

area rug with gray and white stripes

Zurich White SW 7636
Zurich White SW 7636

nuLOOM Vintage Camilla Area Rug, Beige

I love this neutral yet multi-colored rug, a hard combination to find.  Pair it with Benjamin Moore Manchester Tan (HC-81), a light beige with soft green undertones that looks amazing almost anywhere.

Tan area rug matched with Manchester tan

Benjamin Moore Manchester Tan, HC-81
Manchester Tan, HC-81

Safavieh Madison Collection Bohemian Chic Paisley Rug

This rug is soft and lovely.  You could pair it with Sherwin Williams Windy Blue (SW 6240) or Benjamin Moore Dreamy Cloud (2117-70), a light lavender for a more ethereal look.

Patterned persian rug with whites, grays and blues

Sherwin Williams Windy Blue (SW 6240) or Benjamin Moore Dreamy Cloud (2117-70)
Windy Blue SW 6240 or Dreamy Cloud 2117-70

Safavieh Adirondack Collection Rustic Bohemian Rug

This pretty light colored timeless rug paired with Benjamin Moore Abalone (2108-60) would be great for a sunny room and fresh look and field. Abalone is a soft gray with purple undertones.

Area rug with white and gray pattern

Handmade Wool Reversible Modern Moroccan Kilim Rug

This is a bold and magical combination.  I love a room painted black, but it has to have lots of windows and natural light, with white molding and ceilings. This rug comes in several different colors, but this is my favorite. We’ve paired it with a soft black, Benjamin Moore Onyx 2133-10.  Learn about how to work with a dark wall color here.

White rug with black moroccan pattern

Benjamin Moore Onyx 2133-10
Onyx 2133-10

Persian Rugs Distressed Cream

This creamy classic rug has splashes of color and looks slightly distressed.  You can pair it with the Benjamin Moore classic, Revere Pewter HC-172, or push your boundaries and paint with Benjamin Moore Tranquility  AF-490.  Either way you can’t miss.

Cream rug with distressed persian pattern

Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter HC-172 or Tranquility AF-490
Revere Pewter HC-172 or Tranquility AF-490

Safavieh Montauk Collection Handmade Flatweave Geometric Cotton Rug

This graphic rug would be a hit in a living room or bedroom.  I found three perfect Benjamin Moore blue colors to match the rug: Wolf Gray (2127-40), Marilyn’s Dress (2125-60) and the color I’ve been dying to use because of the name, Cheating Heart (1617)

.White rug with blue and gray geometric pattern

Benjamin Moore Wolf Gray (2127-40), Marilyn’s Dress (2125-60) or Cheating Heart (1617
Wolf Gray (2127-40), Marilyn’s Dress (2125-60) or Cheating Heart (1617)

Safavieh Arizona Southwestern Diamond Geometric Ivory and Beige Rug

For a super-swank monochromatic look, pick this classic rug with Benjamin Moore Edgecomb Gray (HC-173).  The texture will set this room apart.  Use off-white Simply White for trim (satin) and ceiling (flat), and add organic textures such as wood and fur with black accents.

Beige area rug

enjamin Moore Edgecombe Gray HC-174
Edgecombe Gray HC-174

The Verdict

A classic rug is the perfect place to start when you pick your paint colors.  Any of these rugs would look gorgeous in a modern interior.

Don’t forget to test your paint colors! Check out “How to Pick Paint Colors LIke a Pro“.

Online Color Consulting

If you still need help with paint colors, check out our Online Color Consulting packages or an in the Denver Metro area.

ONline Color Consulting


About the Author

Michelle Marceny, principal designer and founder of The Color Concierge, a paint color consulting company in Denver, Colorado.

Hi, I’m Michelle Marceny, founder, owner, and Principal Color Designer at The Color Concierge. I believe a fresh coat of paint can completely transform a space. The Color Concierge was born out of my drive to help clients fall back in love with their homes. My clients trust me to help them find the perfect paint color for their home – whether it’s a whole-house paint color scheme or ideas for a single room. 

Since The Color Concierge was founded in 2017, we have completed over 3000 color consultations, both online and in-person.  I am a Certified Color Expert with 7 years of experience creating interior and exterior color palettes throughout North America.

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8 Responses

    1. So many great tips. I am looking for carpet color suggestions to used with Benjamin Moore Shoreline paint. Any ideas?

  1. Loved the tips. Very helpful.

    Can you suggest a rug color to match Benjamin Moore’s, Revere Pewter paint that I have on my ealls?

    1. I would stick with muted colors, even jewel tones are gorgeous. Try to pull in one of the colors in the rug to match the Revere Pewter.

  2. What mixed colored rug would match my October Mist painted walls? Please respond because I really need help !!!

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Meet Michelle

Driven to help clients fall back in love with their homes with intentional paint color schemes. She started the company based on her passion for color and its ability to make a house a home.

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8 Easy Ways to Pick Paint Colors