Choosing hardwood for flooring is easy. It is often too gorgeous to pass up. After that, however, the design process can get overwhelming: With so many options for wood types, finishes, and cuts, among others, finding the right floor that fits the project’s personality can turn into a headache. By considering each facet individually—prefinished or site-finished, and so on—builders can narrow the field and find the perfect match that will make clients so happy they’ll want to take off their shoes and slide across the floor in joy.
If you have flooring you don’t like — whether it’s carpet, vinyl or unappealing wood — it can feel like there’s no way to escape it, no matter how many rugs you pile on top. But if you have floors you love, walking across them can be a daily pleasure.
That’s because the floor is the base upon which all other decorating decisions are built. Change your floors, and you change the character of your home. It’s as simple as that.
So it’s no surprise that new floors — specifically, hardwood floors — are at the top of many renovation wish lists. Not all wood floors, however, are equally appealing or appropriate for every space.
“We look at a building holistically, so the walls and windows, and the environment that we’re in, all feed into the decision-making about the floors,” said Paul Bertelli, the design principal of JLF Architects in Bozeman, Mont., whose firm chooses a different wood floor for almost every project.