As we move out of 2016 and into the new year what are the top flooring trends for 2017?
Hardwood flooring has been popular for centuries, but recent trends in hardwood include wider planks, darker colours and richer hues. Some unusual surface treatments are also popular. Planks come 5, 6, 7 inches and even wider. The wider planks create a more open, less cluttered look.
Darker colours and richer hues of walnut, mahogany, Jacobean, and even ebony stains reflect a return to traditional styling. Those desiring a lighter motif are choosing grey or lime-washed woods over light woods like maple and white oak.
One of the strongest trends in hardwood flooring continues to be the move toward rustic or antique-looking wood. Treatments that offer the rustic feel of homes built in the 1700s, 1800s, and the early 1900s using the knotty pine, maple, pecan, and hickory. Clear finishes that reveal the wood’s natural graining, colour variations, and true character are again popular. We continue to see domestic hardwoods that are intentionally distressed to provide an aged look. Aging techniques such as hand-scraping and brushing which, as the name implies, involves using a machine to scrape or brush the wood, will continue to be popular.
Domestic hardwoods are being spotlighted again over imported or exotic woods. Domestic woods can be coloured with aniline dyes that offer a spectrum of colours while still showcasing the natural grain.
Along this line, reclaimed woods are also climbing in popularity. This distinctly aged option is the most eco-friendly of all flooring choices: making it popular with the Green movement. Reclaimed hardwood includes solid wood sourced from old barns, farmhouses, mills and factories, beams, as well as logs salvaged from rivers and lakes. These sunken logs provide high quality lumber because the cold water protects them from insects and rot, yet they take on unique and dynamic colouring and, being old-growth trees (some harvested over a hundred years ago) they offer straight grain and wide planks that are rare with new-growth trees.
Eco-friendly options are one of this year’s top flooring trends that is gaining in popularity. This includes use of reclaimed wood, and engineered flooring that uses high-quality birch plywood (such as is used in high-end furniture) and vinyl glues instead of the MDF substrates that give off gas. Also look for manufacturing processes that respect the value of the natural resources consumed in making the flooring and make use of managed forests rather than clear-cut lumber. Good examples include flooring products by Hakwood, Preverco, and Torlys.
Wood-look laminate flooring remains strong in the manufactured flooring field. New manufacturing techniques offer a more natural look, even for the rustic wood connoisseurs, and good quality laminates hold up better to the abuse of heavy traffic areas and large dogs or small children.
Cork flooring is often selected for its amazing acoustic-insulating qualities, but is also more comfortable to walk on than traditional hardwood. Cork now offers expanded colour choices over that of years past; today’s options span the colour palette. New factory finishes make cork more durable than it was just a few decades ago. Natural cork can fade in direct sunlight, however cork with a light stain added is fade resistant. Cork can be used in any room of the house, and TORLYS Cork floors are even hypoallergenic! Cork’s unique look, feel and versatility makes it one of this year’s top flooring trends.
Cork is considered renewable because stripping the bark off the cork tree does not kill the tree. The original material harvested is used for the corks found in bottles; the discarded material is then ground up to be used in flooring.
For more information or a consultation on your flooring needs, contact us or come visit our Victoria or Nanaimo locations.