help! suggestions for a shag rug alternative?


Our cheap Ikea shag rug met its demise a few weeks ago (the tale is too sad to share, but lets just say it involved an incredibly sick kitty), and I am determined to replace it before the weather gets a chill a in the air. Perhaps it’s time for an upgrade and something a little different. Shag rugs seem so…. 2004. I’d love to find an alternative, but one that is still soft under the feet and relatively easy to clean up spills. There are a couple at West Elm I am eying (the pebble rug or the sweater rug) but I’d like to visit them in person before ordering. Why don’t catalogs offer rug swatches? Does anyone else have suggestions? Remember we have a toddler in the house and — shhhh — there’s talk of a puppy in our future. Thanks for your help! — Angela M.

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I thought Dash & Albert and/or Crate & Barrel did offer rug samples? I know Dash & Albert are selling through Garnet Hill now.

Not practical but I was enamored of the rug photos in the new restoration hardware too. and I was amazed and delighted to find a wool rug ordered through Overstock was above and beyond expectations at that price point.

Baby and Puppy make me think flor though.


No samples, but I second the recommendation of overstock. Their selection is really big and includes items sold by other major retailers. We just got a 100% wool 4X6 for about $75 for our entry and it is really, really nice. I also love my ikea rugs, especially for the price! Good luck!

The Sweater rug at West Elm is *awesome* – it’s been at the top of my list for a year now. It used to come in grey, which was even better for stain camouflage, but the cream is still pretty fantastic.

Angela M.

Thanks for your suggestions. I LOVE Dash & Albert rugs, but since we want a clean natural look here, I’ll save them for another, more colorful rug need.
Overstock is a great idea, I will definitely check there. And thanks, Becki, for the Sweater rug endorsement. Definitely our fave so far.

How about a jute rug? I think they’re quire hard wearing, and would fit the natural look you want:

If you have toddler and a possibly future-puppy just get the cheapest thing you can stomach. No cream, no solid colors, actually if you can help it. I +1 the recommendation for Overstock. When that thing gets ruined again you won’t want to be kicking yourself for spending too much on it. :)


Do not get the West Elm pebble rug!! We love love love the look but when we purchased it, within a day of medium traffic, it was as if we owned 4 shaggy white dogs…furballs EVERYWHERE. Even a vacuuming over didn’t stop this rug from shedding. When we returned it, we were told it wasn’t an uncommon return…

Angela M.

Thanks Julia

We actually just bit bullet and got the sweater rug from West Elm. I’m in like, not love with it. I think I miss the texture of a shag/thick pile — but this is probably more practical for spills and such.

New puppy will be coming later in the year… Stay tuned!


Hi there, I realize this is an old post, but I wanted to check in on how your sweater rug is holding up — although I’ve already purchased it so it’s moot. I have a 5 month old and a dog and knew to steer clear from solids but we needed something lighter for our room as it’s already pretty dark. We’re going from sisal to wool, so it’s an improvement in texture for us — but I still worry about stain issues. Any words of advice??

Angela M.

Hi Jessica. I have to tell you, the sweater rug did NOT hold up. It shedded more than a Labrador. Seriously, there were fuzzies everywhere. We moved it out of the living room and into an office where there is less traffic. It is definitely better there, but I can’t say I’d recommend buying it.