Outside your house, the space around your front door provides an opportunity to express your style and offers a glimpse of what guests can expect when they’re admitted into your home. Whether you enjoy a witty quip or a heartfelt message of welcome, or you prefer to communicate your design choices through imagery alone, layering your doormats can set the tone you want.

This may have started with Instagram or another social media platform—homeowners were sharing what they did to spruce up their front entrances, and people took notice. One trend that has really caught on is using multiple doormats to create a layered effect. It takes a little creativity, but this style isn’t hard to accomplish. Learn how to mix and match doormats for a layered look to add interest to your front entrance.

Layered Looks Aren’t Just for Sweaters

When you read about layered looks, the first thing that comes to mind may be one of those sweaters with a sewn-in collar and cuffs that make it look like there’s a separate shirt under the sweater. Or perhaps you’re already a fan of creating layered looks with bedding, draperies, or throw pillows. If none of that rings a bell, the layered look for your home’s exterior may be a new idea for you.

What Is a Layered Look for Doormats?

Creating a layered look with doormats on your front porch is just what it sounds like: putting one doormat atop another, larger doormat or outdoor rug. The trick is to select the right sizes and patterns to complement each other rather than clash or cancel each other out.




The Bottom Layer

The first step when learning how to mix and match doormats for a layered look is selecting your first layer. This is the mat or rug that will rest on the surface of your porch. There are several points to consider regarding the bottom layer:

  • Size: The bottom layer must be larger than the mat you choose to place on top. However, the two should work together so neither looks too big or too small.
  • Material: Your home’s exterior floor surface may dictate the type of mat you need for your bottom layer. A painted wood floor will be slippery at times, whereas a concrete stoop will be less so. Choose a bottom mat that won’t skid on your porch’s surface.
  • Exposure: The layered doormat look works best on a sheltered porch or stoop. If your front door entry isn’t covered, you’ll need mats that can endure the weather conditions where you live.
  • Color and pattern: This can get tricky, but the main thing to remember is that much of your bottom mat will be covered by the mat you choose to layer over it. Stick to abstract patterns and neutral colors that could pair with just about anything. Our 2x3 Floor Flair work great as a base layer and come in hundreds of designs.
The Top Layer

The top layer of your doormat combination is where you can inject a little personality. Many layered-look enthusiasts like to choose mats with messages. You can find mats that say just about anything, from “welcome” to “the cat will see you now” to “the dog is our doorbell.”

Because your larger mat or rug forms the base layer, you can play around with the top mat by changing it out seasonally or switching it to a holiday theme when the time is right. Studio M’s recycled rubber MatMates™ doormat trays are designed to create an attractive border around our great variety of artist-designed doormats.

Choose MatMates™ trays in a line or scroll pattern to make your choice of decorative doormat really stand out. Select several of our colorful interchangeable doormats to fit within the tray and easily switch them seasonally. Or, opt for a few personalized doormat designs featuring your family name to let folks know they’re at the right house.

Each of our colorful doormats is easy to clean and boasts a recycled rubber backing, which you can use with or without a MatMates™ tray.




Combining Layers

Your bottom rug or mat should be flat, without a raised pile. It can have a surface designed to trap water, dirt, and snow, but it shouldn’t have crevices so thick or wide that it causes your top layer to crimp or crumple when someone steps on it.

Generally, your layered doormats shouldn’t be much wider than your front door; a 3x5 outdoor rug or mat works well under a 2x3 doormat. Regardless of the sizes you need, it’s most appealing to the eye if you maintain the ratio of the rugs. In this case, the widths of the rugs are about 60 percent of their respective lengths, and the top rug is 2 feet shorter in length and a foot less wide than the layer underneath.

You don’t have to be a mathematician to determine how your layers will look together. Trust your eye to see whether the sizes you’re contemplating will fit, one atop the other, in a pleasing way. You can cut out some cardboard or fabric in the sizes you’re considering and set the smaller on top of the larger to get a better idea of how it will look.

Choosing a neutral color for your bottom layer doesn’t mean the rug must be bland. You can select a mat with an intricate geometric pattern, stripes, checks, or abstract shapes in black and white, or shades of gray, wheat, or taupe. These will set off your top layer’s more vibrant colors and any message printed on your top doormat.

Doormat Care

Your bottom layer is likely to stay exposed to the elements longer than the top doormats if you switch them out from time to time. Cleaning the bottom layer often will help it last longer and look better as the backdrop for your top doormats.

Clean your top layer doormat every time you remove it so the mat will be ready for its next turn as your main welcome mat. In bad weather, you’ll want to clean it more often to keep your greeting looking fresh.

Mixing and matching doormats for a layered look adds a sense of fun and a touch of style to your front entrance. There aren’t any hard and fast rules for decorating—if you think it looks good, go for it!