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Sustainable Lifestyles Frequently Asked Questions


Click here to go to the Wood Tiles FAQ.

Sisal & Natural Fiber Rug FAQ CATEGORIES:



  1. What is sisal?
  2. What is sisal wool?
  3. What is seagrass?
  4. What is mountain grass or hemp?
  5. What are the advantages of natural fibers?
  6. What sizes are your rugs available in?
  7. How do I determine what size I need?
  8. Can I order different shapes?
  9. Can you apply C.O.M fabric?
  10. Will the rug need a rug pad?
  11. Where should natural fiber flooring be used indoors?
  12. Can natural fibers be used outdoors?
  13. How do I care for my sisal and seagrass rug?
  14. What are the advantages of the protectorant?


  1. How do I place an order?

Shipping and Delivery

  1. When will my order ship?
  2. Can you ship to Canada, Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico?
  3. What methods of transportation do you use to ship?
  4. Do you have expedited shipping?
  5. My client needs the rug for a special occasion, do you have expedited service?
  6. Claims?


  1. Terms?
  2. How do I find out the cost of a custom rug?


  1. What is Sustainable Lifestyles return policy?



What is sisal?

Sisal’s textured look is a favorite of interior designers. Sisal is a natural fiber derived from the 'agave sisalana' cactus plant. Sisal grows in semi-arid regions. The largest producers of sisal are located in northeast Brazil and Africa. Sisal fibers (which can be up to three feet long) are sustainably harvested by hand from the leaves of the cactus plant. Sisal is not the same fiber as coir or jute. Sisal is stronger and more durable than other natural fibers. Sisal is therefore preferred for carpet and rugs. Sustainable Lifestyles flooring products are 100% authentic sisal (not a sisal blend with other fiber).

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What is sisal wool?

Sisal wool is a combination of the best of both worlds. Sisal wool has the look, texture and durability of sisal with the soft feel underfoot of wool. Sisal wool is made of 60% wool and 40% sisal.


What is seagrass?

Seagrass is a durable, economical plant fiber derived from tropical grasses. Our seagrass is imported directly from China. Seagrass reeds are thick and rigid. The non-porous skin is smooth to the touch and gives a slight natural sheen. Seagrass is only available in its natural color, which has an organic, green cast and becomes less green overtime. Seagrass is the most stain resistant fiber we offer.


What is mountain grass or hemp?

Mountain grass is grown in the highland fields of China. Chinese Mountain Grass is also known as Hemp. It is similar in texture to seagrass (reed-like) but because of the dryer growing conditions has a deep shade of brown.


What are the advantages of natural fibers?

Sisal, seagrass and mountain grass area rugs and wall-to-wall carpet have excellent durability for residential and light commercial applications. The machine woven, natural fibers are anti-static, non-toxic and colorfast. The plant material creates healthy indoor humidity levels and prevents the build-up of static.

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What sizes are your rugs available in?

Most of our rugs are offered in standard sizes of 2x3,3x5, 3x8, 4x6, 5x7, 6x9, 8x10, 9x12 and 12x15. We can make rugs as small as 2x3 and as large as 13’ wide. You can choose any size in one inch increments.


How do I determine what size I need? Determining what size is easy to measure. Looking at the room, decide the area you would like to cover. Measure in feet and inches; i.e. 6’ 4” x 9’ 10”. Here are some guidelines for specific rooms:

  • Dining Rooms: Measure your dining room table, then add 54” to both the length and width to allow chair movement.
  • Living and Family Rooms: Measure the size of the room, and deduct 48” (4’) from both the length and the width. This will allow for 2’ of floor inside the perimeter of the room.
  • Bedrooms Measure the size of the bed, then add 48” (4’) to both length and width.

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Can I order different shapes?

Yes, we offer round, ovals, octagons and cut-outs. Please note that rounds and ovals can be finished with serging only and are not available in seagrass.


Will the rug need a rug pad?

Most of our rugs have a latex backing that provides padding and prevents curling and slipping. The sisal wool  and wool rugs have a jute backing and need a rug pad to prevent slipping. We also have pads for the outdoor rugs. Click here to see our selection of pads.

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Can you apply C.O.M fabric?

Yes. We can apply C.O.M. fabric on any rug to coordinate with your client's décor.  The rug will be finished to the width of your choice, padded and with mitered corners. Fabrics should be upholstery weight. Please inspect your fabric to be sure there are no flaws or defects before sending it to us. We cannot be responsible after it is applied to the rug. Send us at least 1 linear foot more than your longest rug length. Please note that rugs purchased with C.O.M. fabric cannot be returned.  

Where should natural fiber flooring be used indoors?

Living rooms, family rooms, entry halls, bedrooms, computer workstations, home offices, exercise rooms and covered patios. Natural fibers provide a massaging underfoot, which is preferred for rooms where you do not sit on the floor.


Can natural fibers be used outdoors?

For rugs that can be used outdoors see our new complete line of outdoor rugs. Natural fiber floor coverings are for indoor use only and should be used in a covered area; protected from the elements. Natural fiber rugs are highly recommended for enclosed and screened porches. Do not expose to rainfall or allow to become water saturated (i.e. sisal and seagrass are NOT for bathroom, sauna, Jacuzzi, uncovered patio deck, swimming pool or roof top patios).

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How do I care for my natural fiber rug?

Natural fiber floor coverings are relatively easy to maintain because dirt does not cling to the hard fibers, but rests loosely in the weave. Natural fibers do not show dirt readily.

    Normal Maintenance: Regular vacuuming is the best care you can do to keep the fresh appearance of your natural fiber flooring. Visible and loose dirt should be vacuumed with a strong brush-suction vacuum. Vacuum the carpet from different directions, making several passes over the area.

    Vacuuming Bound Rugs: When vacuuming bound area rugs, take special care with the binding border. Do not let the vacuum sit on top of the binding or catch the corner of the rug as it could damage the binding. Also, vacuum in the direction that the binding is sewn so as not to pull up the binding from the rug.  Rugs will not be replaced or repaired due to improper vacuuming or care.

    Overall Cleaning: It is important during cleaning to control the amount of moisture. It is NOT recommended that the natural fiber be steam cleaned, wet shampooed or any other method that involves water saturation. It is recommended that a dry cleaning process be used.  We have a Host Cleaning Kit for your convenience and it cleans up to a 250 sq. ft. area.

    Fresh Stains or Spills: These are easiest to remove while still moist. Immediately remove by blotting liquids with a white cloth and scraping up solids. If necessary, follow by dabbing with a white cloth dampened with club soda. Dry immediately with a hairdryer or fan.

    Water: Because sisal, seagrass and mountain grass are natural fibers, they can absorb moisture. To avoid watermarks, spills must be cleaned up immediately with an absorbent white cloth. Dry with a hairdryer or fan.

    Protecting Natural Fibers and Mountain Grass:We highly recommend that the natural fibers and mountain grass be treated with our protector to decrease absorbency and lengthen the time between cleaning. All rugs (except Seagrass) have the protectorant applied. The reed-like fiber of Seagrass makes it naturally stain resistant, however, the protectorant can be applied for an additional charge. 

What are the advantages of our protectorant?

Our protectorant is an acrylic polymer fabric and textile protectorant. Natural fibers and other fabrics treated with this protectorant will repell water and resist virtually all cold liquid spills and even oily soil. It contains no ozone depleting chemicals. As we highly recommend treating natural fiber rugs with our protectorant to protect against spills and increase the life of the rug,we apply it to all rugs and carpet except Seagrass.

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How do I place an order?

Qualifed dealers can place an order by phone, fax or online. To order online, you must first be an approved customer and login to your account.  Click on the Order icon on the side of the web page and fill out the information on the order page - no pricing will appear, but will be confirmed to you before processing the order. To order by phone call us toll free at 1-800-287-3144, phone 952-448-9602. To order by fax- send a fax to 952-448-9603.  We are open Monday through Friday, 8:30 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. cst.



When will my order ship?

Your rug will be made and shipped within 5-10 business days. Custom sizes, shapes or borders can take 5 days longer. Broadloom typically ships withing 2-3 business days providing the item is in stock. We will advise you if your order will take longer. Shipping time is 3-5 business days.


Can you ship to Canada, Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico?

Yes, we can ship to these locations. Hawaii and Puerto Rico ship via UPS 2nd Day air for rugs up to 9x12. For rugs larger than 9x12, we will quote you on extra shipping charges.

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What methods of transportation do you use to ship?

We will choose the shipping manner that is the most cost effective. All shipments will be arranged by the motor freight carrier of our choice.We ship rugs up to 9x12 via UPS Ground. Rugs larger than 9x12 will ship via Freight carrier. Please let us know if you would like ship via 3rd party billing for either UPS or Freight carriers. Please note that not all standard carpet carriers have routes from Minnesota. We have done our best to find the most least expensive, but service orientated carriers.

Do you have expedited shipping?

Yes, we can expedite your shipment via UPS 3 Day Select, 2nd Day Air or Next Day Air. Larger rugs that ship via Freight Carrier are more difficult to expedite.


If my client needs the rug for a special occasion, do you have expedited service?

Yes, there are two ways to expedite your order: expedited shipping (see above) and expedited service. Expedited service places your order at the top of the production schedule and can usually be shipped out within 24-48 hours. The cost for this is an additional 25% of the cost of the carpet or rug(s).



Our products are carefully inpected prior to shipment.  Claims covering merchandise custom sized or shape, cut or installed with visible defects, wrong color or off dye lots will not be considered.  Claims for shipping damages should be handled directly with the carrier.  We assume no responsibility for labor, freight, or lost time, etc.  All goods are sold F.O.B. Warehouse.  We warrant our goods against manufacturing defects for up to thirty days from invoice date.  Any claims registered after thirty days will not be considered.

Packaging note: On larger area rugs we wrap very carefully and wrap sisal scraps around the outside of the package at both ends and the middle. The scraps are not the same as the rug you ordered.


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Prices are wholesale and subject to change. All prices are F.O.B. Minneapolis. Payment terms are Pre-Paid; terms available with pre-approved credit.  A 2% per month late fee will be charged to all overdue account balances.
Credit Policy: To establish credit please submit one bank and three trade references (names, account numbers, contact names). We have a Credit application that can be faxed to you. 

How do I find out the cost of a custom rug?

To order or receive a price on a custom rug, you can calculate the custom square foot price x the total square feet of the rug. For pricing, click on the Price List icon on the home page.


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What is Sustainable Lifestyles's return policy?

Sustainable Lifestyles stands behind every product we sell. If, for any reason, you are not satisfied with your purchase please contact us.  No merchandise may be returned without a written authorization issued by our claims department.  No unauthorized returns will be accepted.  The following cannot be returned for any reason: merchandise custom sized or shape, cut or installed with visible defects, wrong color or off dye lots will not be considered. 

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