Floor runners are long, skinny carpets popular for use in hallways, foyers or in between rooms. They can function in an aesthetic sense by leading your eyes through rooms or warming up spaces visually. Hallways with no room for furniture can end up looking barren. Floor runners help these spaces to look more homey and designed. They are also extremely practical. Floor runners keep your feet warmed literally by protecting them from cold wood or tile floors. In addition, they can make your floors more quiet; your kids won't be so loud as they thunder through your hallway if they are running on carpet rather than wood.
If you always wanted a fine, silk, handmade Oriental carpet but you don't have the budget to fill your living room with one, buy an Oriental floor runner. Fine Oriental carpets come in every size imaginable and floor runners are very popular with customers. You'll have a huge selection of one of a kind handmade rugs to choose from. Floor runners are much smaller than area rugs. As a result, of course, they are much less expensive. You may be able to afford a true work of art that you will be able to keep for your entire life. Floor runners are also a great choice for people who love the look of Oriental carpets but feel ambivalent about filling an entire room with a busy pattern. If you place your Oriental floor runner in a hallway, it won't be competing with any furniture for attention. You can leave your walls sparsely decorated and make the carpet the focus of the space.
Obviously, if you are going to lay your runner in your foyer where it will see a lot of traffic, you are not going to want to invest in a beautiful, handmade Oriental floor runner. You probably want to place something like that in the hallway to your bedrooms, where people are less likely to walk on it wearing shoes. If you need a floor runner you can keep in your foyer or something that's probably going to see a lot of abuse from rambunctious children or family pets, go with sisal. This material is very affordable and can withstand a serious beating. Your family and guests can tread all over a sisal floor runner without worrying about pulls, tears or bald spots. Sisal is also excellent for hiding dirt and stains, so you won't have to wash your rug as frequently.
Since floor runners are small, affordable and transportable, it's fun to experiment with bright, saturated colors that you might not have the nerve to try on a wall or with furniture. Floor runners can function as accent pieces, just like pillows or throws. Pick out a floor runner in an exciting color that complements your decor. Neutral walls and furniture look great with jewel tones, whereas pastels look brighter with pops of candy colors like hot pink or apple green. If you don't like the way your new floor runner looks in your room, you can always just move it to a different room or donate it to charity and pick out a different color.