Mia Tyers September 15, 2021 Interior Design
Homeowners are spoilt when it comes to selecting the type of floor they want for a home; it could be traditional timber, plush carpet, vibrant rugs, smooth tiles, hard-wearing bamboo, rubber, practical vinyl, stone or even cork.
The floor is a blank canvas in any rooms theme and chances are the floor is the first thing you’lI plan to change when renovating. As any home renovator knows, there is a very satisfying feel ing that comes from pulling up old carpet or ancient linoleum and laying down something new. Your choice of flooring depends on the look youre trying to achieve, the style of the interior and furniture, what room t is and if you need long-wearing and hardy flooring.
Vinyl, traditionally the most practical and flexible floor covering, has stood the test of time in many Australian kitchens, bathrooms, toilets and laundries. Designs range from the slate look to a timber look to plain patterns.
It is warmer than ceramic tiles for feet and extremely easy to care for — a sweep and a damp mop will maintain its looks. Vinyl can be professionally installed by the home handyman on a concrete slab or timber floor.
Lino is back in fashion in Australian homes because it’s biodegradable and extremely hard wearing. It’s made from natural materials and comes in squares which are easy to lay. Not only is it anti-bacterial, fire-resistant and anti-static, it’s quiet because the wood content means it can absorb noise.
Today’s rugs feature an almost limitless variety of designs and colour’s to add life to a floor. Before purchasing a rug, its important to consider what it will be used for. Is it to insulate a cold floor, cover a worn patch in the carpet or add a splash of vibrant colour to your existing decor? The choice is yours as to whether you want the main base colour in the room to be used as the foundation of the rug, or if you want to use a contrasting colour.
Persian rugs have been around for centuries but today are rarely handwoven and are copies of original designs. Tribal rugs are related to the Persian family of rugs and are known for their simplicity or pattern and rich colour’s. Contemporary rugs are appealing because they match most furnishing styles while modern rugs, full of colour and fun, feature lots of bright colour’s in geometric or simple designs.
To ensure you’re happy with the choice of rug, some rug companies will even allow customers to try a rug overnight so they can be sure it works well with the furniture and the light in the room.
Who would have thought the stuff that pandas eat could look so good on the floor? Beautiful bamboo is a visually stunning alternative to traditional timber flooring and is environmentally friendly, too, as it is a totally renewable and sustainable resource. It is also surprisingly hard-wearing as it was rated as hard as maple, more stable than red oak and tougher than cherry, teak and walnut when tested against leading timber species. It can be glued down or nailed, or installed as a floating floor.
If you’re looking for a floor covering that is easy to keep clean, non-allergenic and stays warm in winter but cool in summer, perhaps tiles are the right covering for you. Tiles are still mostly used in kitchens and bathrooms, but they also make a stylish and functional choice for living areas, hallways and entrances. When choosing a tile, you have to consider where the tiles will be laid so they withstand foot traffic in the high traffic areas of the home, how they’ll be used and the design of the tiles. They also have to fit in with the furnishings, colour’s, objects, shapes and activities in their surroundings. No one tile is suitable for all purposes — there are tiles for all environments. For the kitchen and bathroom, ceramic tiles are best, but sand stone, slate, terracotta and concrete tiles are also suitable if sealed with the correct sealer.
There are so many considerations when choosing carpet. Apart from the choice of fiber and pile, there’s color, texture, pattern and the mood you hope to create. The other features of a room should help you decide on a carpet pattern. Modern furnishings often look good with eye-catching geometric patterns, while period homes with their rich features are often suited to more plush, woven carpets. Knowing a room’s purpose and traffic levels also makes it easier to work out the best carpet options. Carpet can also help create mood in a room — for example, selecting carpet in cool blues can create a calming and soothing effect. Australian carpets are made from three major fibers: wool, nylon and polypropylene, and the different textures are created by the use of different yarns, processes and pile heights.
Level loop pile has minimal tracking and crushing and is easier to clean and maintain, as soil tends to stay on the surface. Multi-level loop pile is a patterned surface which has a textured appearance. Cut pile carpets have a stunning appearance, however some tend to produce shaded effects and show footprints easily. Cut and loop pile stand up well to traffic because the sculptured effect helps disguise soiling and crushing. For a luxurious appearance, sheared pile is a great choice and for a carpet that minimizes the effects of footprints and shading and has excellent durability, twist/frieze pile is highly desirable.
Timber floors have been a fashion-proof favorite for decades in all styles of home, from the California bungalow to ultra-modern city apartments. They also add warmth, character and rustic charm. Native hardwood timber floors are ideal for living rooms, bedrooms, hallways and kitchens and are available in a variety of species and colors to suit your existing rooms and furnishings.
Timber has natural insulation benefits and natural warmth and is aesthetically pleasing as well as being practical, versatile, stylish and healthy. Solid hardwood timber floors are an excellent choice for asthmatics as solid timber floors don’t harbor dust mites or other allergens like carpet can. They are also easy to clean and maintain, are extremely durable, are better for the environment as wood is one of the world’s only truly renewable resources and are available in a wide variety of species which means a large range of colors.
Black butt, spotted gum and flooded gum are just some timbers that offer an entire spectrum of natural hues and rich texture, from deep, chocolate browns to rosy pinks, golden honey tones and creamy blond shades.
Concrete floors are very durable, modern and cool and come in a multitude of different finishes to suit your home. Poured concrete is tough but elegant and can be polished to a soft gleam, or for an earthy look, left slightly textured. Colored pig meets, or chemical stains can be added to the wet concrete to give it a different finish or different color. When the floor is dry, it can be painted or sprayed in your choice of finish. Plain concrete can be dressed up with a border or river pebbles. Concrete tiles are easy to lay, both inside and out.
For something a little warmer for the feet, a concrete look-alike option may be best. Terrazzo is a custom-made cement or resin-based material embedded with chips of glass, marble or granite. It’s sealed at the factory, making it stain-resistant, and the base can be tinted in your choice of color. These large tiles can be re-buffed at any time.
Stone gives an earthy and natural feel to a home. Limestone’s texture improves with age, while granite is extremely hard-wearing with a speckle finish and can be quite pricey. Slate has dark hues with a rippled texture, and luxurious marble is richly colored but can stain more easily.
Tiles can be kept clean by sweeping every day, vacuum regularly coat the floor with rubber fittings and clean tiled floors regularly with water and recommended cleaning agent.
Large tiles (400 x 400 mm or 500 x 500 mm) should be used for large areas, and they also provide smaller area the illusion of space.
To protect your carpet, use furniture cups to get rid of pressure marks, place entrance mats to collect dirt, use rugs in traffic areas to minimize uneven wearing, vacuum at least once a week. Draw curtains to reduce fading, prevent spills, and if spots and spills do occur, clean immediately.