If you’re thinking about doing your floors, you’ve probably done countless hours of research online, visited several stores in Worcester, and pored over colors, textures, sizes, and styles. You may have some idea of what you like, but is it a good choice for your lifestyle or your budget – or both? We’re breaking down the pros and cons of the most popular trends in flooring today.
Wide-planks are the most predominant trend in flooring today, regardless of color and finish.
Pro: The popularity of this type of flooring means there is a wide variety of options, from smooth engineered flooring to barn-like boards.
Con: DIY installation can be trickier because you’re working with such a large area.
“The distressed floor style has been around for quite a while but has become even more popular just recently,” said Sebring Design Build. “Distressed flooring undergoes artificial aging and styling processes that give it a slightly worn finish. It works best for spaces where a beautiful rustic look is desired. In preparing distressed wood flooring, various actions are taken depending on the degree and style of ‘distress’ desired. The edges of each wood plank are hand scrapped, swirl and kerf markings are added to imitate historic wood and the planks are brushed to remove glossing and give them a soft worn texture.”
Pro: Because it’s already distressed, it’s a good choice for households with kids and/or dogs.
Con: If/when smoother wood looks come back into style, those who have gone the distressed route may not be be able to have their floors refinished, depending on the depth of the distressing.
This is another fast-growing segment of the flooring industry because today’s vinyl planks can fool the eye, and, sometimes the foot and fingers, too. Luxury vinyl planks look like the real thing, but often at a much lower cost.
Pro: Choose vinyl planks that “float” and you can go right over the top of existing flooring. That makes it an easy choice for those who don’t want to do demo. Luxury vinyl is also extremely durable and easy to take care of—great for active households.
Con: The best vinyl plank product will get close to the price of real wood unless you are lucky enough to catch a sale. It’s not wood.
“For years, lighter floors were viewed as outdated or inexpensive. That is no longer the case,” said Flooring Inc. “As more homeowners embrace the light, airy feel in their home, you will see a huge resurgence in light wood floors. Blonde wood, in particular, can give you that light feel, while still feeling timeless. With blonde wood, your decorating possibilities are endless. You can go for a chic, contemporary feel or a rustic, homey vibe all without changing your floors.”
Pro: Depending on how light you go, you may be able to enjoy an added benefit of disguising dirt! Also, “blonde wood makes any room feel larger and more open, especially if you use large planks.”
Con: If trend cycles hold, darker wood will come back at some point. Choose an excessively trendy look, like bleached-out floors, and you may further limit your “in-style” window.
“Gray wood floors are increasingly common and are a 2018 floor trend. They provide a unique, clean look that fits well in modern homes.
Pro: They look fresh and can make any home feel a little more current.
Con: Will the pendulum swing back to brown? Eventually…probably. Flooring that works in both brown and gray tones might help with the staying power. Also, gray can “lack the warmth of traditional natural-color wood flooring,” they said.
Those who lean green have loved bamboo floors for years because of the material’s eco-friendliness. “Bamboo is considered as the fastest growing woody plant, reaching full maturity in five to six years,” said Green Design Build.
Pro: Bamboo is also known to be very strong and durable, and, whereas options used to be somewhat limited, a growing green trend means more looks for buyers interested in eco-friendly floors.
Con: Bamboo can be pricier than many other options.
There is a huge trend toward going with tile that looks like wood instead of using real wood. “These are porcelain planks that are designed to mimic natural wood grains,” said Family Handyman. Porcelain planks (tiles) are an attractive and durable floor trend.”
Pro: With 3D printing, the looks you can achieve are endless, and mimic the appearance of wood so closely that people may not even realize it’s not wood. Wood-look tile is also a great choice for areas like “the bathroom or other space prone to dampness” and is easy to clean and care for.
Con: It’s hard under foot. And it’s not wood.
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A Bit About Worcester County, Massachusetts
Worcester County was formed from the eastern portion of colonial Hampshire County, the western portion of the original Middlesex County and the extreme western portion of the original Suffolk County. When the government of Worcester County was established on April 2, 1731, Worcester was chosen as its shire town (later known as a county seat).
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