How To Receive and Unwrap a Rug Or “When Your New Rug Arrives”


How exciting!  Your new rug is here.  Let’s get it rolled out so you can see it. 

Did you know that the most common source of damage to new rugs is the unwrapping process?

We see this kind of damage all of the time. So, please, take a moment to view these instructions so that you don’t become one of those disappointed customers who has accidentally damaged their new rug.

Step 1:  First, you need to understand the wrapping materials and the tools you will need to get the job done properly. Those wrapping materials consist of: (1) several layers of plastic or a combination of burlap and plastic; and (2) bands of shrink wrap banding, or conventional twine, in two or more places along the length of the rolled rug.

Before we continue, please put away all utility knives and razor blades.  We will show you how to do this simply and safely with a pair of household utility scissors.

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One other very important note:  When receiving a rug, and prior to unwrapping, be sure to make note of the location and extent of any damage.  In cases of serious visible damage, do not open the rug.  If the carrier is present, refuse the delivery. If the carrier is not present, take photos of the damage with your cell phone or otherwise, and notify us.  This will speed up the return and replacement process.

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Step 2:  With the packaged rug lying flat on the floor, pinch a loose area of the outer wrapping material, whether plastic or burlap, and pull it away from the rug surface.  Snip a small hole using the scissors, being careful not to cut the actual rug. 

Step 3:  Again, with care, cut the outer burlap or plastic bag down the length of the rug in both directions, beginning at the small hole.  To avoid puncturing or slicing the rug, hold the blades of the scissors parallel to the surface of the rug and at a slight angle away from the rug.  Stop the cutting in either direction when it becomes more difficult to get the scissors under the bag. In other words, these cuts do not have to travel the entire length of the rug.

Step 4:  Repeat Steps 2 and 3 with each remaining bag layer (typically one more layer, but could be two).

Step 5:  Beginning at the center of the rug, carefully cut all layers of packing material around the circumference of the rug. Take your time, and be sure not to slice or puncture the rug with the scissors. The result will leave you with two separate halves of packaging material still on the rug.

Step 6:  Pull each half of wrapping off of the ends of the rug. Retain the wrapping material until you have inspected the rug and are sure that it has no concealed shipping damage.

Step 7:  Holding the scissors parallel to the rug, carefully cut the shrink wrap banding or twine ties off of the rug.

You are ready to roll out your rug and enjoy. 

Note that many times, rugs will curl in the direction that they were originally rolled for storage and shipping.  This curling can be addressed in one of two ways.  First, the rug will tend to relax over time by itself and the curl will eventually disappear.  Alternately, the ends of the rug can be tenderly reverse-rolled, and this will help speed up the process of eliminating the curl.


How to Rewrap a Rug for Shipment


When a rug needs to be returned, here is some great advice on how to repack it.  This will minimize the chance for damage to occur during the reshipment.

Step 1.  Let’s start with the rug lying flat, face up, on the floor.  Roll it tightly, starting from the unlabeled, short end.  If possible, have someone help you so that you can roll it evenly. 

Step 2.  If you have rolled the rug correctly, the diameter should be somewhere in the neighborhood of between 6 and 10 inches, depending on the size of the rug.  The label should be visible on the outside of the roll.  Starting about 1 foot from the end, secure the roll with packing tape, shrink wrap, or twine every 2 feet along the length of the roll.  Be sure not to get tape on the rug label.

Step 3.  Take one of the 2 halves of the original packaging, and make a relief cut so that it will easily slide onto the end of the rug.  Repeat this procedure for the other end of the rug. 

Step 4.  Be sure to cross out any old shipping labels with a black permanent marker so that the rug is not accidentally returned to you by the shipping carrier. Secure each half with tape in several places, tightening the packaging as you go.

Step 5.  Insert the rug into the plastic sleeve that we have provided, and secure both ends with zip ties. Then, snip a small air hole near each end of the loose plastic sleeve.

Step 6.  Starting at the center of the rug, pull the slack in the sleeve towards you, and secure tightly with a short strip of packing tape.  Repeat this process every 12 inches along the length of the roll.

Step 7.  Tape along the length of the roll to secure the seam created by the folded slack of the sleeve.  Secure any seams or loose wrapping material, along with the zip ties on the ends of the rug, again with short strips of packing tape, to make sure the package is waterproof.

Step 8.  Next, wrap packing tape, every 12 inches, around the circumference of the rug, to secure the taped seam and the ends of each short strip of tape previously added. 

Step 9.  Affix the shipping label provided by the carrier to the outer plastic wrapping, using clear packing tape.  Be sure to laminate the entire label with the packing tape to ensure that the shipping address and barcodes remain readable during the shipping process. 

Your rug is now ready to ship


First Aid for Rugs – Spill Response and Spot Cleaning


A guest has just spilled wine on your new rug!  One of the kids just threw up on the floor and it splashed up on the new rug!  In life, these kinds of things happen.  The first thought that comes to mind is ‘What should we do to get the spilled material and stain off of the rug while not damaging the rug?” 

Let’s look at this problem in three ways.  First, is this a spill of heavier material that remains for the most part on top of the rug, or between the pile fibers – or has the material penetrated into the pile fibers and stained the yarn?  Next, how do you treat the staining to the rug, if at all?  Finally, what do we do with the rug tomorrow when you have more time to deal with it?

For heavier spills that remain on the top of the rug, remove any solid material by hand.  Use very cold soda water to bring the remaining material to the surface.  Then, gently blot the surface with very cold water and mild soap (do not scrub). When wiping the surface, work inward from the perimeter of the spill.  Do not wipe outward from the spill area, as this will spread any staining.

If the spilled material has penetrated deeply into the pile, place a towel or cloth under the affected area to absorb any liquid that comes through.  Use very cold water and mild soap and blot the area. Do not scrub, again working inward from the perimeter of the discoloration.  Finally, blot with water only and then dry the area with clean, absorbent paper or cloth towels.

Commercially available spot cleaning compounds, as well as common household cleaners, reportedly have been successful in cleaning some residual spots, however we don’t recommend anything more than very cold water and mild soap.  The reason for this is that different kinds of stain require different remedies.  For example, tannin-, organic-, synthetic-, or dye-based stains each may require a different approach for its proper removal. You may risk “setting” the stain, which could require much more work by a professional to remove, if it is even possible to remove.  (A professional may have to look at the fibers microscopically.)


If you are unsuccessful removing a stain from a rug, take the rug to a professional rug cleaner.  To find a qualified rug cleaner close to you, please contact Michael Mull at One World Rug Care (505) 821-0302.  Michael is a recognized expert who trains professional carpet and rug cleaners around the country, and he will provide further recommendations in this regard.  If you are unable to reach Michael, please send us an e-mail at   We will follow up and get back to you.