What is a Patio Mat?

G. Wiesen

A patio mat is a type of outdoor adornment similar to a large rug or blanket that can be used to add decoration to an existing patio or create a usable area for camping, picnics, and when traveling with a recreational vehicle (RV). These mats can be made from fabric, straw, rubberized materials, and other types of substances, though materials that are weather-resistant and durable are typically chosen. A patio mat can be a simple solid color or have a design or pattern on it for more decorative purposes, and may appear similar to an area rug or more like a picnic blanket.

Woman holding a book
Woman holding a book

Often available through outdoor suppliers or home and garden supply stores, a patio mat can be used for a variety of purposes. As the name implies, patio mats are often used on patios around houses to add decoration and make a patio more pleasant to use. A fabric patio mat can make the stone surface of a patio more enjoyable for people with bare feet, and a mat can be used to help prevent stains to stone or wood from spilled food and drinks. Patio mats can often have printed images and patterns on them, including thematic images for holidays and special occasions, adding attractive decoration to a patio.

A patio mat may also be used in place of a picnic blanket or similar item to make camping, picnicking, and traveling with an RV easier. These mats can be used to cover grass, gravel, and similar rough terrain so people can sit or stand on them more comfortably. Depending on the material used to make a patio mat, it may also be used under a tent or sleeping bag to provide more padding between the hard ground and someone sleeping outdoors. There is a wide array of materials that can be used to make a patio mat, and someone can even make one at home.

Fabrics are often used in making simple, thin patio mats that can be used for decoration or as blankets for picnics. These fabrics are typically durable and resistant to harsh weather conditions and damage or mildew due to water and moisture. A patio mat can also be made using rubberized materials to prevent the mat from shifting on paved patios. Straw mats are also fairly common and can provide a naturally water-resistant, lightweight alternative to fabric. Most patio mats are made from materials that can be easily cleaned, usually with just soap and water.

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Discussion Comments


@heavanet- If you don't want to spend the money on a patio mat that may not even fit your patio decor or budget, you should get a piece of outdoor carpet. This type of carpet is readily available at any home improvement or carpet store, and can be measured to fit any area. It is also quite affordable, sometimes less than a dollar per square foot.

Another thing that I like about outdoor carpet for a patio is the fact that it is easy to clean. Since it is manufactured to withstand wind, rain, snow, and outdoor dirt and grime, outdoor carpet will last season after season with basic cleaning. You can sweep it with a broom, vacuum it, or even deep clean it with a carpet steam cleaner to keep it looking its best year after year.


It has been my experience that patio mats are hard to find in my area. Those that are available are either not very attractive or too expensive for my budget. I'm looking for some suggestions for something else to use on a patio instead of a patio mat.

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