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Enhance Your Outdoor Space: The Ultimate Guide to Outdoor Rugs

Updated: Jun 20

The Natural Rug Company Guide to Outdoor Rugs

Blue Border Outdoor Rug with Grey Weave in Garden

What is an Outdoor Rug?

Imagine a warm Summer afternoon, you and your friends decide to move into the Garden, you step onto a beautifully woven rug that withstands the elements and enhances the beauty of your outdoor space.

An Outdoor Rug, sometimes referred to as an Indoor-Outdoor rug, is crafted specifically for outdoor environments. Rugs have always been used in outdoor settings, but usually they had to be brought in the second that it started to rain. These days, with man-made synthetic fibres, we can avoid a lot of the negatives of using Indoor Rugs outside. These rugs are built to endure the diverse conditions of outdoor settings, making them a practical addition to places like patios, decks, and pool areas.

Our decking looked quite bare until we were tipped off about The Natural Rug Company by a neighbour. We went with a Burlington with Tweed Outdoor Rug, because the samples they sent looked really interesting when we placed them on top of the wood outside. We couldn't be happier when we unrolled our new Rug, exactly what we needed!

Lucy, Cheshire

Deciding to add an Outdoor Rug to your home will always enhance your outside space. Rugs help define and improve the look of any area, whilst providing a cosy feel underfoot. Here at The Natural Rug Company, we know that Natural Sisal has its limits and that's where Synthetic Sisal can shine!

An Outdoor Sisal Rug has the potential to be the perfect summer companion. Outdoor Rugs make an ideal picnic, patio or garden rug or runner. They can be used to frame existing garden furniture around your outdoor space. Whatever exterior area you add them to, they will create a visually interesting element for your patio, terrace or deck.

An Outdoor Rug for all Gardens

We're not like every Recipe Guide you've seen online. Lets get stuck in and show you a range of Beautiful Outdoor Rugs...

This New England Jackson Synthetic Sisal Rug is finished with a Taupe Border. The weave on this rug is undeniably stylish with its striped, two-tone finish, combining a rich dark and lifting lighter grey. When framed with the border it combines into the perfect choice for any setting. Check it out here...

With its silver grey tones, our Boston Rugs offer the look and feel of a classically woven, grey boucle Sisal carpet, but are easy to wet clean and are incredibly hard-wearing and versatile. They're ideal for the rigours of high traffic Interior spaces and weather-protected for Outside placement. Check it out here...

Whether you’re re-decorating the exterior of your home or enhancing your outdoor living area, you'll find the ideal rug among our extensive selection.

Every single one of these Outdoor Rugs can be customised with different coloured borders and in whatever size you desire. The beauty of the Bespoke Rug is that it is one of a kind and sure to be the talk of any BBQ or Garden Party!

What's more, you can rest assured that each Rug you order is tailored to meet the demands of different outdoor spaces, ensuring both seasonal style and enduring quality. Specially designed and extremely versatile.

So, what are the Key Features and Benefits of Outdoor Rugs?

Outdoor rugs are specifically designed to withstand changeable weather conditions like sun exposure and rain, making them durable and easy to maintain. These rugs are often made from synthetic polypropylene, which resist colour fading and conditions such as mould and mildew.

Where indoor rugs typically feature softer, more delicate fibres such as wool or plant fibre, offering a far more luxurious feel but understandably offering less resistance, Outdoor Rugs use modern technology to give a similar feel to real Sisal, but with all the benefits I've touched on.

Yoga on an outside rug

Remember: While you can use an Outdoor Rug inside—often a practical choice for high-traffic areas or homes with pets—an Indoor Rug placed outdoors might stretch it too far and it will quickly deteriorate when exposed to moisture and UV rays.

Key Features of Outdoor Rugs

  • Weather-Resistant Materials: Outdoor rugs are made from synthetic polypropylene, which is engineered to resist the harsh effects of the English weather. This includes moisture, mould, mildew, and the sun’s damaging rays.

  • Ease of Maintenance: Designed to face outdoor challenges such as dirt, debris, and spills, these rugs are exceptionally easy to clean. A simple spray down with a garden hose and some sunshine for drying is typically all that's needed.

  • UV Protection: To ensure longevity and maintain vibrant colour, the materials of outdoor rugs are treated to resist ultraviolet light, preventing them from fading with sun exposure.

  • Quick-Drying Capabilities: The construction of outdoor rugs allows them to dry rapidly, preventing the retention of moisture and the problems that come with it, such as mildew.

  • Mildew Resistance: Beyond just repelling water, the fibres used in outdoor rugs resist mildew growth, keeping them odour-free and visually appealing.

  • Versatility: Although designed for the outdoors, these rugs are also an excellent choice for indoor areas prone to spills and stains, such as kitchens and entryways. Their durability makes them suitable for high-traffic zones.

  • Design Diversity: With advances in synthetic fibre technology, outdoor rugs offer a wider array of colours and patterns compared to traditional natural fibre rugs, allowing for more bold and expressive design choices. The added benefit of customisable borders means that the options are compelling!

How do I choose the right Rug for my Outdoor Space?

When selecting a rug, consider the following tips to ensure you pick the perfect one for your needs:

  • Evaluate the Location: Decide where you'd like your Rug to go and plan out the area. Take some measurements to ensure that you can choose the perfect sized Outdoor Rug for you. You'll want your new rug to allow all the patio furniture to sit on top of it with space around for walking the around. The added benefit of this is that even if strong winds arise, your Rug is safely pinned down.

  • Consider Your Decor: Ensure the rug complements the style and colours of your existing garden or patio furniture. If you have Wooden Furniture perhaps match it with a Burlington Range? Instead have some Metal Furniture our Montawk Range might offer a better look? Outdoor rugs come in various patterns and colours, allowing for flexibility in design. We offer you the ability to choose a material and border that will fit in with any style.

  • Prioritise Durability and Maintenance: Opt for rugs that are easy to clean and maintain, especially in outdoor settings. Our rugs can be cleaned with water and are hardy enough that more stubborn stains can be sorted with a mixture of water and bleach (diluted to 10%). This means your Rug will stay in tip-top condition for many years to come.

By understanding these key differences and making informed choices, you can enhance both the functionality and aesthetic of your living spaces with the perfect rugs.

The best-kept secret about Outdoor Rugs

The most overlooked feature of the Outdoor Rug is just how far you can extend their use! When you're done with your Garden Parties, why not roll up your Outdoor Rug, bring it inside and put it down in your Conservatory over the Winter?

Hate the feel of the cold tiles in your bathroom or kitchen? Use an Outdoor Rug in these spaces! Their water-resistant fibres dry quickly and if you get them a little messy a mild detergent is all you need to spruce them up again.

Cleaning Outdoor Rugs can often be achieved with a little water in most cases, which means no need to use chemicals or compromise on colour fading over time.

"We use ours in the kitchen most of the year, then when the sun comes out we add our Outdoor Rug to the garden path just outside the French Doors. We decided on a Pistachio border which fits in with the Golden Cotinus planted on each side of the path really cheerfully."

Trisha, Suffolk

Indoor & Outdoor Rugs FAQs

Are Outdoor Rugs easy to clean?

Yes, indoor/outdoor rugs are designed for easy maintenance. Made from polypropylene synthetic fibres, these rugs are built to resist moisture, stains, and fading. For cleaning, simply spot-clean, shake, or vacuum. For a deeper clean, you can wash them with a hose and then hang them over outdoor furniture to dry quickly.

Can outdoor rugs be used inside?

Absolutely! The robust style and durable materials of indoor/outdoor rugs make them an excellent choice for indoor areas prone to spills and stains, such as kitchens and dining rooms, as well as high-traffic zones like hallways and entryways. They are also perfect for screened or three-season porches.

Can indoor rugs be used outside?

It is not advisable to use indoor rugs outside. These rugs are not designed to endure the harsh elements such as rain and sun. Exposure to these conditions can lead to fading, watermarks, and deterioration of the fibres.

Can an Outdoor Rug get wet or rained on?

Yes, they're specifically designed to be Water Resistant.

Will an Outdoor Rug kill grass?

An Outdoor Rug will limit sunlight reaching grass if placed on top for too long. So, if you decide to use an Outdoor Rug on your lawn, it is important to move it once your event is over to allow your turf the opportunity to enjoy the sunshine as well.

Will an Outdoor Rug rot my deck?

Most decking will be completely unaffected by an Outdoor Rug, but it is important to maintain your deck. The area underneath the Rug is not protected by the Rug, so when treating your decking, roll up your Outdoor Rug and store it, treat the entire deck the same and then wait until the decking is dry and ready before replacing your Outdoor Rug in its position.

Will my Outdoor Rug get moldy?

Polypropylene is not a favoured environment for mould/mold, but if left uncleaned for a long period of time dirt will stick and that dirt will attract mould/mold. A regular spruce up with a hosepipe will keep your Rug looking perfect.

What is Polypropylene?

Polypropylene, also known as polypropene, is a thermoplastic polymer used in a wide variety of applications. It is produced via chain-growth polymerization.

How do I keep my Outdoor Rug from blowing away?

Adding garden furniture on top of your rug or runner will ensure that it stays in place, but the Rugs themselves are high quality and of a good weight.

How big should my Outdoor Rug be?

Your Outdoor Rug should always be a little larger than the footprint of your existing furniture. If you have a patio table set use a tape measure to establish the length and width of the set with chairs tucked in, then measure a comfortable extra portion for people to walk around the perimeter of the set. That should be the perfect size. But all situations are different, if you want advice contact us.

Can Outdoor Rugs be used inside if I have pets?

The Water Resistance comes in quite handy with pets and the toughness of the fibres can stand up to a great deal of scratching. Easy to clean and hardwearing, these Rugs are great if you have pets!

Are they suitable for Kitchens?

Putting a standard Rug or Runner into a kitchen can often be a recipe for disaster, not so with an Outdoor Rug! These Rugs can stand the rigours of Kitchen stains and spills! A great solution. Pair it with a non-slip underlay for extra security in this high traffic area.

Are they suitable for Bathrooms?

The High Water Resistance means that you could even take your Rug or Runner into the Bath with you and it would be perfectly fine. It might even be a good way to keep it clean! Pair it with a non-slip underlay for extra security.

When should I store my Outdoor Rug?

The general rule is that you should store your Outdoor Rug during periods where it is not being actively used. If there is a lot of bad weather forecast, just roll up your Rug and store it away until the sun starts shining again. This is good advice because it will mean you have less cleaning to do on your Rug. If you left it out all year round, you'd have to give it a serious scrub before it looked garden-worthy again.

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