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What Are Seagrass Rugs?

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  • Written By: Misty Amber Brighton
  • Edited By: Allegra J. Lingo
  • Last Modified Date: 12 September 2016
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Seagrass is a type of grass grown in open wetlands in Asia. The crop is then harvested and woven to make seagrass rugs. These organic rugs are light brown or tan in color and have a rough feel to them. They typically have a canvas edging to keep them from unraveling. Some seagrass mats may also have a foam backing to add cushioning and keep them from slipping or scratching the floor.

The fibers are tightly woven together to form seagrass rugs. They may be woven in a variety of patterns, and a basket weave style is the most common. Single or multiple strands can be woven together to create a design. Some of these natural fiber rugs are hand-woven, while others are created by machine.

Seagrass varies in color, but is usually beige or tan. Some stalks may be a faint olive green color. This means the shade of a seagrass rug can vary and may even contain light brown strands with specks of green mixed in.

There is usually a border around the edge of seagrass rugs. This is for decorative purposes as well as to keep the fibers intact so they will not unravel or tear. The border is typically around one to two inches (2.54 to 5.08 cm) wide, depending on the overall size of the rug itself. Canvas, nylon, or bamboo might be used for the border. Most borders are light brown or black in color.

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Seagrass mats typically feel rough to the touch, but the fibers are not usually sharp. There is very little cushioning to a natural fiber rug, so many manufacturers add foam to the back of the mat. This makes it more comfortable to stand on while protecting the floor underneath from being scratched by the coarse fibers.

These natural fiber rugs generally do not absorb liquids or dirt. This makes them a very stain-resistant type of rug. They are easily cleaned by brushing them with a broom or shaking them to remove debris, but may also be vacuumed if they are extremely dirty. Most types do not need to be washed in a washing machine.

The fact that seagrass rugs are not absorbent makes it impractical to use them in many areas of the home. They are most often used in entryways to keep dirt from being tracked into the house. Room-sized seagrass carpet can be used as a floor covering for a porch or patio.

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