Choosing carpet for your home isn’t an easy task. With so many options available, you might need a little help to make the right decision for your home. At Alcher Interiors in Southbury, Connecticut, we work with you to ensure you’re buying exactly what you want and that it fits the needs of your home or office.
From synthetic fibers of nylon and polyester, to natural fibers such as wool, silk and grass, along with hundreds of colors, textures, and patterns, carpet offers a huge range of options. We know it’s easy to become overwhelmed.
There are two basic fiber choices for carpeting – synthetic or natural.
The primary synthetic fibers are nylon or polyester. You should know that within each type of fiber there are many differences in quality, thickness and pile heights in addition to textures, patterns and loops. In general, polyester fibers will be less expensive but they do offer more nap for your budget. It will also tend to wear very well but there may be fewer color choices.
Carpets are made from many natural fibers also. The most common is wool but you’ll also see plenty of silk, alpaca, sisal, coir and sea grass as well as some wool and nylon blends. Each natural fiber has its own advantages and look.
- Wool is warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer. As a natural fiber, it is easy to keep clean. Wool does last. It wears well over time. Wool carpets are available in cut pile, Berber and woven patterns. There are many different qualities of wool, so you should purchase wool carpet with care. In general, New Zealand wool stands out as the best. Be sure to look for the seal.
- Alpaca is incredibly soft and warm and, like wool, it is also warmer in winter and cooler in the summer. It usually has a lower pile. Alpaca rugs come in both solids and patterns. It is a higher-priced material that is usually installed in very special, lightly used areas.
- Silk carpets are woven in traditional patterns. This fiber tends to have a bit of sheen in certain lighting. Silk is a stunning and very long-lasting fiber but it’s not for the budget conscious! Some wool carpets are available with patterns woven in silk to add texture and accents. You could even have a carpet custom made in silk.
- Grass is a renewable resource and many times we don’t think of grass as a carpet option. Grass carpet (sisal, coir and sea grass) can be used inside or outside. If you choose to use it outside your home, you’ll need to protect it during the winter. Because each piece of grass grows slightly differently, there will be natural color variations. It is part of the beauty and grass carpets can all provide a beach, country, casual or modern feel.
When you purchase carpet, you’ll need to think about how the rooms you’re carpeting are used. You should decide whether you need odor or stain repellants because of young children or pets. Both nylons and polyesters are offered with odor, stain, pet, food and soil guards as well as color fastness guarantees. Be aware that all available treatments will have different names from manufacturer to manufacturer.
Carpet Pile Types
Choosing a carpet pile might be the easiest part of your carpet buying decision. You should base your pile decision on how you live. If you have young children, are concerned about seniors tripping or have area rugs you want to layer over wall-to-wall carpet, you’ll want to look at for low tight pile or loop. If you enjoy walking barefoot, you’ll likely enjoy higher and thicker pile rugs.
Another consideration is the ease of cleaning. Short pile and loop rugs are easier to vacuum. The higher and thicker the pile, the harder it is to vacuum. If you’re looking at carpets made from finer, better quality fibers, the carpet will show your footprints and vacuum marks. For commercial usage or low budget areas, you may want to consider very tight, level loops.
Custom Carpet is always an option. We can design a custom carpet or area rug using your colors and patterns that will complement your new decorating plan.
What You Need to Carpet Shop
Some basic things you’ll need to think about before carpet shopping are:
- Do you have pets?
- Do you have children? How old are they?
- How many rooms do you want to carpet? Will they all have the same color, quality and style?
- Do you want wall-to-wall carpet?
- Do you want area rugs over your hardwood, tile or concrete floors?
- Do you have area rugs you’d like to put on top of another carpet?
- What area of your home are you putting carpet in?
- How is the area used? Is it lightly used or heavy use?
- What is your budget?
If you’re planning on doing some re-decorating, changing your current paint color, window treatments or furniture, you’ll want to decide on your new color plan before you buy your carpet. Alcher Interiors can help.
Carpet installation requires that all old carpet and furniture in each room be removed in order to install your new carpet. You will need to remove all of your fragile, breakable items as well as all electronics. We are happy to move your furniture, but if you’d like to save a little money, you can also move your furniture. Most clients chose to have us to the “heavy lifting” for them.
There are two basic ways to install carpet, Tack & Pad or Glue Down. With the traditional Tack & Pad, wood strips are placed around the perimeter of your room. Rug padding is then placed on the floor up to but not over the tack strips. The carpeting is placed over the padding and installed on the tack strips. The other type of installation is Glue Down. This method is usually used over concrete but can easily be done over an underlayment.
Depending on the space, the installer will either kick the carpet into place or use a power stretcher.
Discover Your Carpet Choices
Let us help guide you through our extensive carpet selection. With products in different materials, price points and styles, we’re here to help you make the right choices. Stop in today!