Wall-to-Wall Carpeting Is Back

Much like your favorite pair of jeans, decor goes in and out of style. Once a celebrated fixture in the American home, wall-to-wall carpeting—intended to cover a floor entirely with one or a few pieces of carpet—is ripe to repeat itself.

You might not remember its heydays, but not too long ago, wall-to-wall was all the rage. According to STARK ambassador Tim Sheridan, “Wall-to-wall faded during the dot-com boom of the 1990s when the elite in over-decorated homes were socially eclipsed by dot-com millionaires in basement apartments. The dot-com aesthetic was kept lean; no rugs, no accessories, no curtains, but tech-centric. This aesthetic remained as they moved out of basement apartments and into penthouses.” Just as Gen-Z loves a good ’90s moment, apparently, so do our homes.

As many of us move away from leaner looks, “People are craving comfort, now more than ever, with a need for multi-use spaces that look great, make a statement, and function day-to-day,” says The Rug Company CEO James Seuss. And apparently, wall-to-wall carpeting isn’t the daunting and complicated task it one was. The same reason that made it outdated has now made it accessible: technology. James notes: “There are endless possibilities with today’s technology and a real opportunity for creativity, as well as durability with high-quality product design that will withstand the test of time.”

Before you run to the store and cover your floor in wall-to-wall carpet, there are a few things you might want to consider. Here’s what you need to know.

How Much Will It Cost?

Wall-to-wall isn’t just back—it’s resurfaced with all the conveniences and price points to make sure it’s here to stay. “There are options at all price ranges,” Sheridan says. Some shops offering carpets for $2 per square foot, while luxury custom designer products can cost as much as $200 per square foot. “The most common price point, however, lands at around $10 to $20 per square foot,” he reveals.

Aside from being accessible at a range of price points, wall-to-wall carpeting is also beloved for being a natural insulator. It keeps warm and cool air from escaping, absorbs sound, and provides a safe, soft surface incase of slips and falls—a meaningful consideration if you live with active little ones or vulnerable seniors.

Should You Install It Yourself?

Unless you know what you’re doing, Sheridan says that hiring a professional is “worth the additional cost.” Working with a professional means your carpet will be stretched properly, fitted tightly against the surface to avoid a loose look, and ensure that there are no uncovered edges from measurement mishaps. Installing a wall-to-wall carpet is sure to make a statement, and professional installation means protecting your investment with a warranty. So while you may not save on cost in the short-term, you will in the long-term.

Once you’ve made your decision, you’ll have no shortage of textures and styles to choose from. If you ask interior designer Christina Kim, “Wool rugs are easy to spot-clean and stay good looking for longer. As long as you are regularly vacuuming and tending to spills quickly, wool rugs are easy to maintain.”

How to Take Care of It

Whether you go with wool or opt for more commonly used materials like nylon or polyester, once you’ve installed your carpet, it’s all about care. You’ll want to vacuum your carpet at least once a week, and have a professional come for a deep clean at least once a year. Warranties on wall-to-wall carpets range from five years to forever, but it’s important to note that the average timespan for replacing a carpet is around 10 years.

As we spend more time at home, we want our spaces to feel uniquely ours, from top-to-bottom and wall-to-wall. Sheridan says, “After two difficult years, people are reminded that life can be harsh, but our homes should be a cocoon of comfort”—and wall-to-wall carpets couldn’t agree more.

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