Buying a carpet: Plain or patterned carpet
Plain carpetPlain carpet is safe, timeless and ageless. It will suit any room or decorating style. It gives you greater flexibility with wallpaper and fabrics and is easier to build schemes around - both now and in the future. It also opens up a room and using the same colour throughout, either upstairs or downstairs, does give a feeling of space and link rooms. If you want a surface texture, such as the popular 'natural look' that replicates coir and sisal, then it has to be plain carpet.
Patterned carpetPatterned carpet does not mean swirly 1970's style! There are some beautiful ornate patterned carpets from traditional designs to smart motifs and colourful stripes that will look at ease in any home. Patterned carpet can be the basis of a subtle contemporary look that has lasting appeal.
Remember to choose carefully to ensure the design will fit in with your scheme and not date too soon. Classic florals and motifs work well in a smaller space whereas a smart stripe, for example, will hold its own in a hallway.
Manufacturers like Brintons and Ulster actively encourage and promote the co-ordination of plain and patterned carpet.
As for colour, the same basic rules apply to carpet as to soft furnishings; light carpets will make spaces look bigger but equally if they are too pale they will show the dirt. Dark colours could make a room look smaller but they don't show up the dirt so much.