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Floor coverings made of natural fibers are an attractive addition to almost any room. Proper installation is essential to making sure your natural fiber rugs retain their appearance and integrity even in high-traffic areas.
Carpets made from natural seagrass and other fibers have a number of characteristics that differ from synthetic rugs. Therefore, it is important to know and work with these unique traits when installing your floor covering.
What Sets Natural Seagrass Rugs Apart?
When you purchase a rug made of seagrass or other natural materials, you can expect some traits you will not find in man-made fibers. Specifically, you will see a lack of uniformity in color and texture.
Small variations are normal and make your rug unique. Here are some common characteristics you can expect in a natural rug:
- Color differences: The color of the rug you receive may not match the sample color exactly. This is because the color of a particular batch of seagrass can vary depending on soil composition, weather and other conditions.
- Sprouts: Seagrass is a short fiber. As a result, it can sometimes sprout while it is being shipped to you. Do look for sprouts and clip them before installing your carpet.
- Visible Seams: These can occur even with high-quality workmanship. When using natural fibers, creating a flat woven pattern will usually result in a visible seam.
- Bowing and Loop Size Variation: These characteristics are common in natural fiber rugs. Some materials are more prone to them than others.
- Plugs: Natural fibers have to be tied off during manufacturing. Thus, you will notice small plugs at these spots.
If you do note irregularities that appear to be outside the norm or would interfere with how you want to use the carpet, contact the seller before taking any steps towards installation. Cutting or altering the material in any way typically means you will not be able to get a refund or exchange.
Which Natural Characteristics Affect Installation?
While the traits listed above do not have a significant effect on your installation choices, there are some additional characteristics that do.
Working with the intrinsic qualities of your seagrass rug will help you install it in a way that showcases and preserves its unique beauty.
- Changes in Color: Whether your rug’s fibers are dyed or in their natural state, their color will change over time. Exposure to sunlight accelerates fading. To preserve color for longer, install your rug in a location without direct sunlight.
- Vulnerability to Moisture: Natural fibers can sustain damage from moisture. They are also typically not weather-resistant. Install your rug indoors, in a well-ventilated area where moisture will not accumulate.
- Susceptibility to Wear and Tear: Most seagrass rugs are only designed to sustain normal wear and tear from residential use. Unless you specifically purchase a rug approved for commercial or office use, natural fiber rugs do best when installed in a residence.
- Contraction and Expansion: Because natural fibers are sensitive to temperature and moisture, they can expand and contract based on environmental conditions. Your installation process should account for this property. Additionally, placing your seagrass area rugs in interiors with stable temperature and moisture levels is a good way to minimize these changes.
In addition to this general advice, be sure to follow any specific recommendations from the rug manufacturer or seller. If you have questions about whether a particular rug is suitable for your purposes, consulting a professional can help.