How our Wall-to-Wall Carpet looks Over A Year Later.

We had our wall-to-wall carpet installed over a year ago, in March 2016, and since then, we’ve had a lot of readers (especially on the install initial post) anxious to hear how it’s holding up these days. Lighter carpet was definitely a risk, but a risk we went into with our eyes wide open so we are happy to report, we’re still loving it 15 months later.

As a refresher, we ordered Stainmaster’s Medford line in the color Fizz. It’s a relatively light oatmeal two-toned check carpet meant for “active families”. What I didn’t realize initially is that two-toned color has been a big factor in keeping this carpet look so new.

In our previous house, we chose a diamond patterned carpet (Martha Stewart’s, Winterthur–see photo below) and pretty soon after install, the pattern started wearing in high traffic walk-ways. Because the raised pattern was the same color as the shorter, it all just blended together when it flattened.

The carpet in this house has a darker threads in the center of the checks with lighter on the outside, so no matter how many times we walk over an area–the checks remain! Of course this seems so obvious now, but truly something I’ve only pleasantly discovered over the course of this year while we played, ran, and walked all up and down it.

There are definitely things we do (and don’t do) to keep it looking top-notch, and even a change we decided to make about 6 months in.

First, We get our carpets cleaned every 6 months, as recommended. I use a local carpet cleaning service (Heaven’s Best, for you locals) and it’s around $149 to get our entire downstairs cleaned, along with the stairs–not bad! I don’t move any of the huge furniture, like the guest room bed or piano or our big sectional, but we do make sure all the small things are up off the floor (including the area rug in the playroom) and the curtains are tied up so it’s a quick job for them. The first time was right after our Halloween party and we just barely got them cleaned for the second time since we recently wrapped the heavy demo for the girls’ bathroom downstairs.

Which brings me to my second “do.” When we started demoing the bathroom, we covered the carpet with clear, protective contract covering (similar to the “walkways” through a show house) all the way down the stairs and leading to the bathroom. If you know you’re going to be making a mess, it’s a good idea. Even still, the carpet took a heavy beating. Between us and the contractors we hired, working and hauling dirt and debris up and down, as well as, running into the utility room “real quick” (real quick still tracks dirt, btw) the carpet looked pretty dirty surrounding the plastic, especially right outside the utility room. I was relieved to see it look brand new after the cleaning last week.

Even still, there is, literally, only one spot that we’ve noticed where the carpet doesn’t look good as new. Pictured in the photo above, there is a dark blue-ish-gray spot on the edge of a stair. A mystery spot that won’t come up. The carpet cleaners tried it all, and luckily it’s pretty small. I’m sure we’re the only ones that will notice–but for purposes of full disclosure–it’s there.

As for the change we made, in November, when we got a new stair railing, we made a last minute, but conscious, decision to rip up the carpet that was installed on the stair landing and replace it with the same faux wood tile we have on our main floor. Charly loves to sleep on the stair landing (but not in a bed because she gets too hot!) and after a few months, it started to look a little dingy there. We knew it would be better to have it be a surface that’s a little easier to keep sanitized. She’ll sleep on the hard floor, but a small rug in the space will add a little cushion for her. I’m currently on the hunt for a 2×7 vintage runner to lay in the landing that will disguise more dirt and can easily be cleaned. (The one there right now used to live in the hall bathroom and is unfortunately too short.)

Even if we could choose all over again, we would choose the exact same rug. This downstairs level represents half of our home and, as you can see, a large portion of living happens down here. We love the brightness the rug brings to the space, the texture of the checks and the softness underfoot, too. We do refrain from wearing shoes down here–but that’s pretty true of our whole house. I hope this helps give you all a visual or peace of mind if you’ve been on the fence. Anyone else have wall-to-wall carpet they just love?!

Psst–Interested in where we got something in our home? You can shop our entire house right here.



  • Reply June 20, 2017


    Well done at keeping your lovely carpets clean.
    We have beige deep pile wall to wall carpets. They were put down almost three years and are still in pristine condition.
    Thankfully are entrance area is hard wood and we have a bench where everyone can sit down and remove shoes.
    Not a single pair of shoes had been on our carpets. We also have slippers to wear.
    I really like carpet. It’s not difficult to maintain if you just follow a few simple rules.
    Above all, it’s imperative to keep shoes off the carpet.
    Anyway, why would anyone want to wear shoes in the house?

  • Reply June 14, 2017

    Nicole Orrell

    I’d love to know what you DO with your shoes when you come in the house.
    I’d love to institute a NO SHOE POLICY, but then the shoes become a tripping hazard at the door and we don’t have a mudroom or a designated spot for shoe removal.
    I tried to set something up in the garage (our daily entrance is from the garage directly into our kitchen) but my husband complains that his shoes are going to be frozen if left out in the garage. ;P

    • Reply June 14, 2017


      We have a basket right but the front door for shoes. It’s our 3 year old’s daily job to make sure all the lingering shoes around the basket get in there.

  • Reply June 13, 2017


    I love the look of the carpet! I’m a little confused by the second photo, though. Are those bright lines part of the two-toneness? Or is that just light?

    • Reply June 13, 2017


      Oh! Haha, that’s light from a window. :)

  • Reply June 13, 2017

    Amy Handley

    I really like how the carpet is fitted tightly under each step. Is there a name for that way of installing on the stairs?

    • Reply June 13, 2017


      It’s called “Hollywood Style” the straight down way is referred to as “Waterfall”.

  • Reply June 13, 2017


    Thanks for this update — this is perfect timing since we are currently working on finishing our walkout basement and will need to make some carpet decisions soon. One question: you said you don’t wear shoes down there, but do you ask friends to remove their shoes as well when you have people over (e.g., your Halloween party)? We hope for our basement to be a fun gathering space for friends and family and we’re trying to figure out how we’ll handle shoes down there since we hope to have light-colored carpet as well… and we are generally a “do what makes you feel comfortable” household when friends ask if they should take their shoes off, since we have hardwoods everywhere else. It’s further complicated by the fact that it opens up to our backyard patio which we hope to be a very usable space as well. I’d love any thoughts you have!

  • Reply June 13, 2017


    I have heard that tighter weave carpet like this one can get runs in it. Have you had any problems with it coming unwoven? I love the look! We are getting new carpet in our bedrooms this year.

    • Reply June 13, 2017


      We haven’t. And hopefully we won’t!

  • Reply June 13, 2017


    I love the tip on using a two toned carpet! I’ve been thinking about doing something in a similar style when we get to that stage of our remodel (it’s currently gutted atm), and I wouldn’t have thought about that keeping it fresh looking! Thanks for sharing :)

  • Reply June 13, 2017

    Amy Lloyd

    Great post! How do you keep your area rugs looking good? Thanks and love the podcast and blog!

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