Natural fibre rugs are a go-to favourite, and for good reason. Jute, sisal, seagrass and coir rugs are easy to care for, affordable and eco-friendly. Their natural, earthy texture makes them amazingly versatile, and a perfect neutral addition to any room.
While they share many similarities, the differences between jute, sisal, seagrass and coir are what sets them apart. You may find that one is more suited to your lifestyle than the other. So if you want to know if jute rugs are soft underfoot, if you should go sisal in your high-traffic entrance hall, or if seagrass can handle spills, read on.
Jute is a natural plant stem fibre and is also used to make burlap and twine. Jute fibers are soft and smooth, and are thus the gentlest underfoot.
The rich texture and natural tonal variation of jute rugs also comes in handy for masking minor stains or spills. It’s good to note though that jute rugs are less durable than sisal or seagrass, so they’re a better match for spaces with medium traffic, like dining rooms or bedrooms. Jute rugs can also shed when new, and colour and texture can differ from rug to rug.
Sisal fibers come from the agave plant. Sisal is the strongest, most durable natural fibre rug, and the perfect choice for high traffic areas. Their hardy weave means they last and can stand up to pet-scratching!
Note that while sisal rugs are very durable, they can fade in direct sunlight and can become stained easily, even by water. They can also feel rough underfoot, and can be slippery (so not a great choice for stairs).
Seagrass is a fast-growing marine plant. The reedy plant produces a strong, non-porous yarn that’s resistant to stains – once a water spill dries, a seagrass rug will return to its normal color.
The dense weave also makes it a very durable choice for high-traffic areas in the home. Your seagrass rug will last you years. Due to the coarse texture of seagrass, it’s not particularly soft underfoot.
Coir rugs are made from coconut husks, and because these are natural fibres, they will break down over time. To extend the life of your coir mat, avoid prolonged exposure to direct sunlight and try to keep it fairly dry.
Unfortunately shedding is normal for any coir mat, but over time, the shedding will diminish. Simply shake it off or vacuum the mat to remove loose fibers.
All natural fibre rugs and wall-to-wall carpets available from Rebtex.