Choosing a Rug Style

Choosing a Rug Style

Rug designs are generally categorized in four different styles: Traditional, Contemporary, Casual / Transitional, and Southwest / Tribal. Here at Atlanta Rug Gallery and Design we carry a wide selection of each, and several other styles such as Shag, Kids, Outdoor, Braided, Novelty, and more!


Traditional area rugs are typically modern-day representations of more formal, time-honoured European and Asian designs reminiscent of either Oriental or Persian motifs. Today's traditional designs typically incorporate current color pallets and sometimes an all-over geometric pattern with linear components for a more simplistic design as opposed to Oriental or Persian motifs. On the other hand, traditional designs can include pictorials illustrating elements from nature such as floral patterns.


Contemporary designs are characterized by stark contrasts, bold use of color and sharp geometric design elements. "Modern" designs tend to be more architectural in feeling, such as art deco designs. They tend to be assertive and bold, offering a strong statement to a room's decor. On the other hand, "retro" designs hearken back to styles that were first popular in the 60's and early 70's. They take advantage of a free-form concept, rarely having any rhyme or reason to the flow of the design.

Casual / Transitional

Transitional designs are a blend of contemporary and traditional. Sometimes referred to as "casual" they tend to be utilized to create the elegance of a traditional design without the formality they often project. Most transitional designs are characterized through the use of open spaces containing a sparse assortment of design components - sometimes traditional and sometimes contemporary.

Southwestern / Tribal

This style is characterized by those design elements common to a specific culture or ethnic group. They typically combine earth tones such as yellow, gold, red and brownin very exacting and structured designs that offer their own interpretation. Southwest or Tribals lend themselves well to rooms that take on specific themes, offering a unique way to tie the common elements of a particular space together.