Choosing the Right Style of Carpet

Before you begin shopping for carpet in earnest, it's smart to have a basic understanding about the different styles that are available. If you walk into a carpeting store without a clue, you're going to be utterly confused when the salesperson begins throwing around terms like "frieze," "Saxony" and "Berber." Fortunately, getting a handle on the different carpeting styles that are available isn't terribly difficult. For the most part, there are only a few styles that you really need to learn about. Once you have a grasp about those basic styles, shopping for the right thing will be a whole lot easier. Below, you will find a crash course in today's most popular styles of carpeting.
Loop Pile: How it Begins
Just about every type of carpeting begins with a loop pile construction. It's only later that it's transformed into the other two popular styles: cut pile and cut and loop pile. Loop pile refers to carpeting that is uncut. Its yarns are looped into its backing, which means that individual pieces do not stick up like "regular" carpet. This style is commonly referred to as Berber carpeting, and it has a smooth, even surface. If you need carpeting for an especially high-traffic part of the home, you'd be smart to consider loop pile styles. Different colors and finishes help to give this type of carpeting a wide range of styles.
Cut Piles
The most popular carpeting style is the cut pile. However, not all cut piles are made alike. There are actually four basic varieties of cut pile carpeting, so it's smart to dig a little deeper when investigating these styles. Cut piles encompass everything from cable carpeting to everyday Saxony carpeting. Some styles work well in high-traffic areas, while others are definitely meant for less traveled parts of the home. A breakdown of the basic types of cut pile carpets is provided below.
Saxony - Saxony carpeting is what most people think of when the term "carpet" comes up in conversation. For many years, it has been the most popular type of carpeting for residential use. With this style, the loops that are creating during the first step of the process are trimmed down to a uniform height. Each piece is cut to the same size, which lends it a consistent and attractive appearance. Vacuum cleaner lines and footprints stand out on this type of carpeting. It is also prone to wearing out quickly, so it's not a great choice for high-traffic areas inside the home.
Frieze - This carpeting features a very attractive and highly textured appearance. The cut loops are twisted drastically so that they curl all the way over. This results in a look that is quite uniform but still intriguing. Furthermore, this type of carpeting resists wear quite well. It also hides the appearance of footprints and vacuum cleaner lines with ease.
Textured - In this case, the cut loops of a carpet are steamed so that they curl slightly. They do not curl all the way over as they do with frieze carpeting. This produces a trackless design that is perfect for busy parts of the home. Textured carpeting is prized for its resiliency and durability, too. It can withstand a whole lot without showing it. As a result, textured carpeting works quite well in homes that have a lot of kids or pets underfoot.
Cable - Cable carpeting is undeniably luxurious and exceptionally soft. Unfortunately, it is also prone to matting and crushing. Therefore, it is not an ideal choice for high-traffic parts of the home. If you really want to use this type of carpeting, you should reserve it for parts of the home that aren't regularly used. Longer yarns lend it a gorgeous appearance that you're sure to love.
Cut and Loop Piles
The last style is the cut-and-loop pile. People often refer to this style as "sculpted" or "sculptured," because portions of a loop pile carpet are cut to form unique patterns. The texture and visual appeal of this carpeting is absolutely incredible. Although you will pay more for this kind of carpeting, you're sure to find that it's more than worth it.
While it's important to select carpeting that meshes well with your home's interior design scheme, it's equally important to be practical. If you use less resilient carpeting in high-traffic areas, it should come as no surprise when it wears out easily. Keep these kinds of things in mind when shopping for carpet. By selecting the right pile and style, you'll end up with a look that will serve you well for years.

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