Sisal is a natural fiber that is harvested from the Agave Sisalana plant, which is native to the Americas, Africa, and Asia. Sisal is a durable fiber that is used in many hard-wearing products, including twines for marine and bailing, ropes, plaster reinforcements, and dartboards. Sisal fiber is strong and very durable. It can be dyed and comes in a range of earthy hues.
Seagrass is harvested from paddy fields that are flooded with seawater during the growing cycle. When the grass is mature, the fields are drained, and the plants are cut and bundled. Workers twist the grass by hand and send it to be woven into carpets.
Seagrass is woven into products such as baskets, placemats, bowls, furniture, and flooring. The seagrass yarn fiber is strong, durable, and naturally stain-resistant. It has a naturally smooth texture and subtle sheen.
Due to the natural stain-resistant shell, these rugs cannot be dyed and are only available in their natural tones.
What Makes Sisal & Seagrass Rugs Different?
Sisal and seagrass rugs share many similar qualities. First, they’re both natural fibers; second, their names are derived from the countries where they originated, sisal from Central America and seagrass from several tropical areas in the Indian Ocean.
As for the difference between them, there are several questions you could ask. Does one have better quality? Does one produce a better quality of the product? Let’s explore.
Both of these rugs are very durable.
Durability comes into play when making an investment in a product. If you have children and pets, you need something durable that will last and stand up to a little wear and tear. These rugs are both very durable, so you can be rest assured, they will last.
Seagrass fiber rugs are highly stain resistant due to their non-porous fibers. Seagrass rug fibers are extremely resilient to dirt, oil, grease, and other spills. The unique properties of seagrass make it ideal for use as a flooring product in high traffic areas such as kitchens, living rooms, dining rooms, entryways, and bathrooms.
Sisal rugs are known to stain easily, even with water spills. Moisture of any kind can warp the weave of sisal and lead to browning of the fiber.
Both of these rugs are similar in appearance. One main difference is that Sisal can be dyed and often is produced in a range of earthy hues.
Seagrass cannot be dyed due to the shell of the seagrass fiber. This leaves only its natural tones as color options. That doesn’t mean that they aren’t stylish. A woven seagrass rug can be a natural, earthy complement to a variety of interiors and you can easily layer another rug on top for a unique look.
Due to more color options and variety often available in Sisal, this helps find warm-colored tints to match more home decor styles. At times Sisal rugs can look like a really high-end installed carpet.
The natural, greenish tint of Seagrass rugs can, at times, leave you limited with color options when trying to match styles of your home decor.
Both of these types of natural fiber rugs have some coarseness or roughness to them. However, Sisal has a rougher feel to it compared to seagrass. Seagrass is a strong material, but that does not mean that the texture is rough. It is smooth and is more comfortable to walk with bare feet.
Sisal fiber is coarse, so they’re a little less comfortable underfoot than seagrass.
Both Seagrass and Sisal rugs are relatively affordable compared to other rug options.
However, seagrass rugs tend to be less expensive. This is great if you are considering wall-to-wall coverings.
Placement in Home
Seagrass rugs bring a touch of natural beauty to any space, whether it is a living room, bedroom, or office. Seagrass rugs blend beautifully with soothing, indistinct interiors or can act as a counterbalance to colorful, energetic spaces. If you are looking for a modern look with hints of nature, a seagrass rug is a perfect fit.
Sisal, being as durable as they are, are often positioned in high-traffic areas of the home. Think entryways, hallways, mudrooms, etc. Sisal rugs are not soft underfoot. So if you’re considering adding one to a living room or bedroom, you may want to opt for a sisal-wool blend.
What to Look For When Buying a Sisal Rug?
When you are buying a sisal rug, you need to check on the following things.
- Check the thickness size, density, and weight of the sisal rug. It should be no more than 2 inches thick. If it is thicker than that, it might be too heavy and difficult to move around. Additionally, If it’s too dense, it can be hard to move around and it will look very dark on the floor. Make sure you buy a rug that is of good density for the room and the purpose of the rug. If you are buying a sisal rug for a living room, you may want to consider a heavier rug.
- Check the weave and edging of the sisal rug. If it is loose and frayed, it will wear quickly. Check the edge of the rug for fraying. If the rug is frayed along the edge, it’s going to fray quickly.
- Check the backing of the sisal rug. Adequate backing will be especially important when the rug is used on a hardwood floor to prevent it from slipping or sliding.
- Is the sisal rug properly dyed? A rug that has been improperly dyed may fade. Is it dyed with latex or water-based dye? These questions are important to know before you buy a sisal rug.
- Check the warranty of the sisal rug. Make sure the warranty is sufficient. It should include all repairs and replacement of the rug if necessary.
What to Look For When Buying a Seagrass Rug?
Here are some of the things you should look for when buying a seagrass rug.
- Is the rug a true seagrass rug and 100% seagrass? Look for the certification label as it is the only way to be absolutely sure your rug is true to its claim. The product tag or label should also have at least the following information:
- Product name — the name of the product, e.g., seagrass rug.
- Country of origin — the country where the product was made.
- SGS Certification number — the product is certified by SGS if this number appears on the label.
- Is the seagrass rug hand-knotted or machine-made? True seagrass rugs are made by hand. If a rug has a tag that says ‘hand-knotted’ or ‘hand-made’ then you know it is a true seagrass rug.
- Are there any chemicals used in the manufacture of the seagrass rug? Always look for the certification label and tag to be sure that the product is not using any chemicals.
We hope this helps clear up some of the main difference between Sisal and Seagrass rugs and that you find this information helpful in your natural fiber rug buying journey.