One of our most commonly asked questions is about the wood flooring we use in our projects. So, today on our interior design blog, we wanted to answer as many questions as we could about wood flooring, including how we source wood floors, what we look for in wood flooring, and when to use each type of wood flooring. To help us answer a few of these questions and provide some expert insight, we reached out to one of our favorite wood flooring sources – Warren Christopher Flooring! (All of the photos you see in this blog post include flooring we sourced from them, so you know they’re good!). They shared some (super!) helpful advice and we’re confident that this post will help you find the perfect wood flooring for your space. Without further ado, let’s dive in!
How do you typically source wood flooring for your design projects?
We almost always start by going to local wood flooring showrooms, all of which either represent different lines of flooring or have their own custom platforms. We prefer to shop locally, even for projects that are out of the area. Nearly all wood floors can easily be purchased through a local representative close to our project site or shipped. Shopping locally allows us to see the different options in person so we can accurately see and feel the different stain colors and finishes. We also love to bring our clients along so they can guide our selections from day one!
What types of wood flooring are available?
According to the experts at Warren Christopher, there are hundreds of species available to use for wood flooring. Those include domestic, exotic, or imported material. The most commonly utilized are European oak, domestic white oak, and walnut. At MGD, we tend to use either engineered hardwood or solid wood. So, we’ll focus on those two categories in today’s blog post!
What is the difference between engineered hardwood and solid wood flooring?
“Solid wood flooring is truly solid throughout the flooring platform, having been milled from a single piece of lumber that is kiln or air-dried before cutting,” explain the experts at Warren Christopher. “Engineered wood is comprised of layers of plywood, baltic birch, pine, or lumber bonded with an adhesive to the top layer. This top layer, or veneer, is the actual species of the hardwood you select for the look of your flooring.”
When do you prefer to use one option over the other?
Warren Christopher Flooring definitely recommends engineered wood floors. “It’s a more stable product that can be installed in virtually any environment without ‘acting’ as sensitive as a solid floor does. I always refer to a solid floor as a living breathing creature that will expand and contract with moisture/humidity/or lack there of!” In addition, “Engineered wood floors can still be re-finished multiple times!”
What qualities do you look for in wood flooring options?
There are typically three things we pay attention to when looking for wood flooring for our client projects. The first is the most obvious – The overall color tone and finish of the flooring. Both of these come down to client preference. However, a few things to keep in mind are color warmth, wire brushing, and sheen. Next, we always consider the plank width and board length. We tend to gravitate towards wide plank options, but it ultimately comes down to the overall style and aesthetic of the home! Last but not least, we look at the wear layer of the floor before committing to an option. Longevity is a priority for us and for our clients. The wear layer determines the life of the floor along with how many times it can be refinished in the future.
What recommendations do you have for people looking for wood flooring for remodels and new builds?
According to Warren Christopher, “Whenever we are at the selection process with our clients, we like to dig a little bit into their lifestyle. We consider things like kids, pets, entertainment, and more, so we can help select a floor that you will truly be able to live on!
“We are SUPER big on Classic timeless floors, that will within stand design trends for years to come!” Here at MGD, we couldn’t agree more! We definitely recommend opting for wood flooring that you love and stays true to your personal aesthetic, regardless of the current trends.
When do you decide to keep and refinish existing hardwood floors?
We try to salvage when the character, wood grain, and plank width stylistically fit the aesthetic of the home. It’s also important that the original floors have enough life left in them. That includes a decent wear layer that allows them to be refinished in a new hue. If you’re able, refinishing existing wood floors can save a lot of money in a remodel project! Our next project launch includes original flooring that we refinished. Make sure you’re following along on Instagram to see it first!
We hope this post answers all of your questions on how to choose wood flooring! We love the timeless style that a high-quality wood floor can add to a space. Again, it’s important to make a decision you’ll be happy with for years to come. Thank you again to Warren Christopher Flooring for contributing to this post and sharing their priceless insight. If you missed our last interior insights post on how to choose lighting for an option concept space, head there to catch up. Let us know in the comments what you’d like to hear from us next!