Five on the Floor

Paul Smith, at the Rug Company.Photo: Courtesy of the Rug Company

An Upper East Side Townhouse
306 E. 61st St., seventh fl.

For 40 years, this shop has specialized in antique Oriental and European carpets (seventeenth to mid-twentieth century), in mostly traditional designs, although surprises (like beautiful Chinese Art Deco designs) turn up in the piles. Head buyer Nader Bolour’s trained eye guarantees the shop’s specimens are always impeccable. Expect to pay for his expertise: Prices start at $35,000.

A Soho Loft
88 Wooster St.

The typical loft—vast, white-painted, with acres of gleaming refinished oak—can get a little serious, particularly if it’s furnished with the usual clean (read: beige) furniture. It cries out for a playful, colorful floor covering. The Rug Company’s portfolio of designs will give the space its needed jolt. Prices range from $40 to $135 per square foot.

An Upper West Side Classic Six
654 Madison Ave.

While nothing short of plastic sheeting will completely protect your hardwood floors from kids and pets, Calvin Klein’s rugs are a more stylish option for a young family. There are six rug collections, from flat to Tibetan weave, that can all be dry-cleaned. Prices start at $225 for a three-by-five flat weave and top out at $9,700 for a nine-foot-six-by-thirteen-foot-six Tibetan weave.

A Williamsburg Apartment
326 Wythe Ave., Brooklyn

Hipster kids in Billyburg would, of course, never go for current wall-to-wall when something cool and vintage is available, right in their neighborhood. Dennis Weddle of Motherload loves crazy patterned old kilims, flokatis, and hand-loomed or hooked rugs; he also recently scored a—forgive us—mother lode of unused rugs from Sears, circa 1960. Rugs average $300 for a four-by-six.

An NYU Dorm
IKEA for locations and hours
800-434-4532 to shop by phone

Even if you’re not a student on a budget, Ikea’s rugs are surprisingly distinctive and idiosyncratic, given its corporate dedication to mass production. A practical Egeby sisal is $139 for a five-foot-five-by-seven-foot-seven. And a modern square-patterned Jutta Ruta reversible rug tops out at $89.99, depending on size.

Five on the Floor