Create a Dramatic Difference in Your Room

Photo: Shaw Floors

Unlike furniture and décor, flooring trends shift and evolve slowly, making it possible to select a style that stays fresh for years. Here’s a list of time-tested trends that have captured the attention of flooring and design experts.

Low-Glow
Delustered flooring—meaning no glossy finishes—creates a dry, European look. Choose hardwood with a raw, hand-hewn appearance and carpet with a woolen, cottony finish. These styles shine without any added luster.

Domestic Hardwood
The trend is moving away from exotic looks to a feeling that’s more familiar. The classic nature of these traditional domestic grains has another benefit; knowing exactly where the wood is sourced ensures environmental responsibility as well as quality.

Play With Patterns
This is no passing fad. Patterned carpet can create layers of texture that add plenty of visual interest to any space. Choose a classic pattern to accent your style without overwhelming it.

Go Wide
When picking your planks for hardwood looks, go for wide and long. These bigger pieces add just the right amount of modern for a clean look that’s still traditional.

Bespoke Charm
Not all floors are truly bespoke, or made-to-order, but trends are leaning toward floors that are made-to-last. Choose a high-quality floor with unique details for a look that will be in style for a long time.

Source: Shaw Floors

Terrace-Level Transformation

MODA Floors & Interiors Project Consultant/Interior Designer: Theresa Minkoff Client: Bires Remodeling

What We Did: This project involved the entire terrace level. The original wood had been water damaged. MODA took up the original product and replaced it with the new. The product is Provenza Old World Collection – Mink – Prefinished Engineered Hardwood. The Old World Collection features a wire brushed, hand distressed and scraped hardwood in combination with an innovative smoking and carbonizing technique.

  • Species: Oak
  • Style: Light Wire Brush
  • Grade: Select to Heavy Character
  • Finish: UV Cured Oil
  • Construction: Engineered

Design Challenge: The design challenge on this project was finding a distressed/rustic product that married the existing traditional site-finished wood on the stairs and main floor with some newer updated color pallets and existing furnishings and fireplace surround at the terrace level.

As this collection has heavy character, smoking varied stain colors and carbonizing, we ordered in three separate colors in the collection so the client could see each color laid out in the room to ensure the color choice was the perfect marriage.

New Luxury Vinyl: Not Your Mother’s Old Vinyl Floors

Photo: Tarkett

Photo: Tarkett

When many of our clients think about vinyl flooring, it brings back images of their mother’s inexpensive linoleum or vinyl floors. That is not the case anymore. The newest generation of vinyl products are now referred to as Luxury Vinyl. This product category has experienced explosive growth and is currently the fastest growing flooring product in our industry.

The growth of Luxury Vinyl can be explained by its amazing combination of Appearance, Durability, Comfort and Affordability. Let’s examine each of these areas:

Appearance: Manufacturers use high-definition printing to create hardwood and tile looks that are highly authentic. Rather than sheet goods, Luxury Vinyl comes in size options that replicate hardwood and tile. Some models can even emulate wire brushing and light scraping found in real hardwoods. You can get the look of hardwood and stone – minus the maintenance.

Durability: A durable top layer protects against excessive wear from kids and pets. The wear layer is chip resistant and offers superior stain resistance and is very cleanable. In my opinion, the most amazing feature of this product is its water resistance. It can be installed in areas that experience some moisture without worrying the product will swell or delaminate. This makes the product ideal for kitchens, laundry rooms and lower level recreation areas.

Comfort: Luxury Vinyl is more soft under foot versus typical hard surface products, making it easier to stand on for extended periods of time. These floors are typically quieter and warmer than other flooring options and do not require additional underlayment.

Affordability: The total cost of materials and installation of Luxury Vinyl is significantly less than tile and hardwoods. There is typically less floor preparation required for this product, and it can be installed over many existing substrates. In addition, a number of these products come with locking systems that allow for a “floating” installation, which eliminates the need for costly adhesives.

The future looks bright for Luxury Vinyl. There is so much to like about these products. I fully anticipate that our suppliers will continue to bring more innovation to further enhance this category of exciting products. We hope you will visit one of our stores to allow us the opportunity to show you some of the many options available in Luxury Vinyl.

Source: Dean Howell, owner, MODA Floors & Interiors

Protect Your Oiled Floors

Photo: Monarch

Photo: Monarch

Treatment with wood oil is very popular as it brings out the same beautiful look that many exotic wood species have. Wood floors treated with oil bring out the wood’s natural character and warmth. Wood oil doesn’t give any direct protection against wear but helps to repel water. It’s a good idea to think about which rooms are suitable for oiled wood floors.

It can be difficult to see and feel the difference between an oiled wood floor and a waxed wood floor. A waxed wood floor is softer and a little more slippery than oiled wood floors.

Things to think about when you dust and clean your oiled wood floor:

Protecting your oiled floors is simple. By routinely cleaning, you remove dust and dirt before they scratch and dull the surface, or wear away the floor.

Always keep water to a minimum when cleaning your oiled wood floors. If you spill (food or drinks), wipe up immediately to prevent any permanent damage or staining.

Sweep or vacuum your oiled floors as often as needed.

Don’t use ”all-purpose” cleaners on your oiled floors as they tend to leave a dull residue and you end up using too much water, which is damaging to your oiled floors.

Things to think about when you maintain your oiled wood floor:

Use a special oil product for maintaining and protecting your oiled floors.

If you have laid an oiled floor in an area where there is a high risk of spilling water, like in a kitchen, apply oil refresher to add a layer of protection and increase the life of your new floors.

The oil refresher can be applied as needed but usually a few times a year. Always make sure the wood floor is cleaned before re-applying.

Source: Bona

Choose Your Hardwood Floor Sheen

Lauzon FlooringWhen you buy a hardwood floor, you deserve to love every little detail. Choosing your floor’s sheen—also referred to as luster or gloss level—is one such detail. This decision can make a big difference in the overall look of your room.

What is sheen?

Sheen, luster, or gloss level, is an optical term that describes a surface’s ability to reflect light. The higher the gloss level, the more directly it reflects light, and the lower the gloss level, the more the surface absorbs and diffuses the light. For example, there is no such thing as a 100 percent gloss floor, but if there were, it would be as reflective as a mirror!

Gloss level is normally measured at a 60-degree angle with a gloss meter, which is the equivalent to looking at the surface while standing up. The gloss level calculation is then derived by the amount of reflection from the finish. The gloss meter compares this value with the black-glass standard, which has a defined refractive index of 100 “gloss units.

The glossier you go, the more light reflects off the floors. This in turn, shows more dirt and dust as well as imperfections in the hardwood floor.

Good to know!

It’s important to realize that different hardwood species—and textures—will produce different gloss levels. Natural wood color or patina, as well as differences caused by open- vs. closed-grain woods, and texture will produce subtle variances in the gloss level.

Picking a gloss level is more of an aesthetic choice and does not impact the durability of the finish. However, over time foot traffic will dull most hardwood floor finishes and create visible traffic patterns. With its superior anti-wear properties, Lauzon’s Titanium finish will maintain the luster of your hardwood floor over time, so you won’t see foot traffic on any of our sheen levels.

Source: Lauzon

The Benefits of Hard-Wax Oil

The rich patina of each floor is only enhanced with age and use; the more it is walked on, the more beautiful it becomes.

Hard-Wax Oil FlooringEmbracing an entirely different custom in a unique way is a great way to break from tradition. Despite the American market’s strong affinity for polyurethane-finished floors, hard-wax oiled floors have been the standard in Europe for centuries. By bringing European-inspired floors to customers in the United States, the design community and hardwood professionals have been abuzz with excitement at the possibilities that come with hard-wax oiled hardwoods.

In Europe, there are hard-wax oiled floors in public spaces that have been installed for 30 to 50 years. A well-maintained oiled floor will actually get better with time as the actual color of the floor will become more distinct over time.

All-Natural Ingredients

Hard-wax oil is made from all-natural ingredients. These natural oils penetrate deep into the wood fibers to protect from within, while the moisture-repelling waxes remain on the surface to create an appealing matte finish and protective layer. Hard-wax oil nourishes and protects the wood while preserving its natural look, which is often lost with the higher luster of polyurethane finishes.

Minimal Maintenance Required

Repairs on hard-wax oiled floors are quite simple with minimal maintenance required. Spots and scratches can be minimized and often eliminated with buffing and a small application of the same oil. With proper care, a hard-wax oil floor will last for years. By comparison, polyurethane finishes are commonly used to create a thick film on the surface of the wood. While extremely durable, repairs can be difficult because the finish does not bond chemically to previous layers and grips only where the surface has been thoroughly abraded. Thus, these floors will typically need to be sanded and refinished over time.

In summary, a natural oiled floor provides a warmth and refinement that is difficult to achieve with modern day acrylic or polyurethane coatings. The rich patina of each floor is only enhanced with age and use; the more it is walked on, the more beautiful it becomes.