Carpet accounts for the largest segment of flooring sold.
Carpet comes in a endless range of synthetic and natural fibers.
Nylon takes the biggest share but since it is petroleum based it has risen significantly along with gasoline. Other alternative fibers have been developed that rival the performance of nylon at more attractive price points. With these market changes natural wool carpet offers tremendous value especially for those who are allergy sensitive.content content content.
Carpet is a key decorative and functional element in a home. Because carpet is the foundation of decorating, it can provide simplicity and casualness for softness and comfort; or it can provide excitement with vibrant color and heavier textures, making a decorating “statement.”
Carpet can be one of the easiest ways to personalize an environment – its color can be a neutral foundation “in the background,” or it can be a vibrant focal point.
Premium carpets are soft and luxurious under foot with a beautiful palette of color, patterns and textures for every room in your home. Premium carpets also provide an outstanding stain, wear and texture retention warranty providing the confidence of many years of durability and easy maintenance.
In addition, when you visit a Madison Flooring and Design showroom, you’ll find a selection of carpets from a variety of leading manufacturers bringing you the widest selection available.
When we think of making interior design changes to our home, we often think of a fresh coat of paint, a new sofa or even reupholstering a piece of furniture without ever looking under our own two feet for the obvious solution. A change of carpeting can bring out new charms in your old furniture and in you! Whether you are looking for wall-to-wall, area rugs, runners, solids or patterns, carpet can dramatically change the look of your living space. And in today’s marketplace, the possibilities are endless.
Color is one of the most personal and subjective elements of carpet buying. One person’s “beautiful” is another’s “boring.” Fortunately, there are more colors and designs available then ever before. Consider some of the new neutrals, like yellow, light blue and pale green, in addition to the more conventional yet forever elegant beige, tan, ivory and cream. Also, remember that while light colors make a room seem larger, dark colors can make a room seem cozier and more intimate.
The area in which the carpet or rug is placed will determine the importance of durability. A high traffic area needs a long-wearing, stain resistant fiber, while your bedroom may require only something that is soft to the touch and pleasing to the eye.
In order to decide what level of durability is needed, here is a guide to the five basic carpet fibers: wool, nylon, olefin, polyester and acrylic.
The Benefits of Wool
For centuries, wool has been synonymous with quality and taste. Wool products are prized for their ability to take and retain color, the softness of the fibers and for the overall ability to maintain that “new carpet” look longer. Ownership of wool products has become a source of pride for many people. Wool has numerous traits that make it ideally suited to carpet almost any area of the home. Wool is easy to keep clean due to its natural barriers against dirt and dust. This natural fiber purifies air quality by absorbing common contaminants and not re-emitting them into the environment. It resists combustion, making it fire resistant. Even burns from cigarettes or hot embers do not permanently mar wool. It is a biodegradable product and environmentally friendly. Wool absorbs sound, making it acoustically advantageous. Wool is water repellant, making spills easier to clean up. Wool saves on heating costs because of its inherent thermal properties. Wool maintains long-term appearance retention due to its natural resilience. Although wool was once thought of as a very expensive, high-end product, manufacturers such as Stanton Carpet Corporation have developed some wool carpets that wear extremely well and are a terrific value. Companies are also making wool carpet affordable, while maintaining elegance and high-style design.
“Wilton” is another name associated with wool carpet. Wiltons are high-quality woven carpets that are produced by interlocking the surface yarns simultaneously with the backing, usually a combination of cotton and jute, and generally feature more intricate designs.
The Synthetic Fibers: Nylon, Olefin, Polyester and Acrylic Approximately 97 percent of all carpet is made from synthetic fibers and yet, some people are still reluctant to purchase a synthetic product. The fear is that the synthetic carpets will not age will and that they will become difficult to clean if stained. Fortunately, times have changed and synthetics are no longer the step-children of floor covering. New innovations and techniques have resulted in spectacular carpets with long lives.
Nylon resists soils and stains, making it a natural for high traffic areas. It is resilient and wears well. If solution-dyed nylon is used, the carpet will be colorfast because the color was added during the making of the fiber itself. Nearly two thirds of the fibers used for carpet in America are made of nylon.
Olefin is a strong fiber, often used for indoor/outdoor areas such as patios because of its resistance to moisture and mildew. Berbers made of this colorfast fiber are also commonly found in game rooms because they are easy to clean. Additionally, unlike some synthetics, olefin causes minimal static electricity.
Polyester is the best feeling of all the synthetics, and is used for carpets with thick, cut piles, creating velvety soft products. Polyesters have excellent color and are resistant to water-soluble stains.
Acrylics are prized for their ability to mimic the look and feel of wool at a much lower price point. In addition, they have a high resistance to moisture and mildew, making them a good option for bathrooms or scatter rugs (especially new doorways).
Patterns are the spice of life. They can be sweet and delicate, or full of pizzazz. They can blend in or stand out. A large design can cut your room down to size, while a minimal pattern or solid colored carpet can make your room appear to grow in size. A bright floral design can make a room that doesn’t get much natural light, more welcoming than before. Patterns can also hide a multitude of sins, camouflaging the little spills and mishaps that come with life at home.
Carpet has become one of the most versatile items in home decorating and has found its way into 95 percent of all households in America. Recent innovations have produced products that are more vibrant, stronger, and wear better than ever before. Wool and synthetic fiber carpets have become an affordable luxury, that with regular vacuuming and deep cleaning, can be the proud focal point of your home for years to come.
Selecting new carpet is exciting but can also be an intimidating experience. So many kinds, so many colors, so much money!
The amount of foot traffic your room has determines the type and color of carpet you choose. The more the carpet is used in a hall, entrance or den, for example, the denser the carpet should be.
Be sure to take samples of fabrics with you when you shop–swatches, finished cushions, draperies, etc. Take home swatches of the carpet you’re interested in, and check the colors in all kinds of light, artificial as well as daylight, to be sure they really are the colors you want and need.
Educate yourself! Take time to learn about the different types of carpet construction before you buy. Plush pile is thick and dense while cut pile fibers are twisted so the carpet doesn’t show tracks from traffic or vacuuming. Cut and loop carpet is used to create patterns, and wool or synthetic woven carpet varieties tend to look like sisal rugs. Berber carpets, which tend to be more expensive, are made from level loops that are not cut.
Easy to clean and long wearing, synthetic fibers account for 96 percent of all new carpet. To maximize the life of your carpet, the Carpet and Rug Institute recommends cleaning your carpet every 12 to 18 months–before it gets really dirty.
Many exciting colors and patterns are available today. If you are looking for something special, ask your Madison Flooring and Design specialist about plaids, low-pile prints, animal prints, nylon sisal varieties, novelty prints and cut and loop designs in two-color combinations.
Custom Bordered Rugs
WE OFFER CUSTOMIZATION on all of our broadloom such as custom runners and rugs with border options. Or you can select from our stocked custom program, or choose our complete customization program. Customization is made easy by Stanton (you must call customer service regarding any custom order).
**Article courtesy of JP Communications.
Originally printed in the Spring/Summer 1999 Issue of Chesapeake Home.