Weigh all the finishing options before selecting grey hardwood flooring
This line from the dictionary does little to explain the dramatic, contemporary looks grey flooring can create in a room. But discerning homeowners frequently are choosing it for their walls and floors in everything from tile to hardwood.
The grey porcelain tile photos in the post are from a bathroom with a zero-entry shower, just completed by Carpetland Carpet One in Cincinnati. The shades of grey and white throughout the room are a popular look.
A growing trend nationally toward grey hardwood floors – particularly maple and birch — stands out a little more because it isn’t yet seen every day by the average homeowner here in the Midwest. Featured in this post is a photograph of Somerset plank maple flooring, prefinished – meaning at the factory before installation — in the color, Greystone.
Putting grey stain on Maple can be a little tricky because of the way this wood absorbs the stain, so you are likely to also see some brown tones. The mechanics of this process are not of concern unless you are a homeowner who prefers a square-edged plank flooring — meaning no bevels around the boards’ edges — that is stained and finished on-site.
Stain color can be tested in advance so you achieve the perfect shade. A waterborne polyurethane likely will be used over that as an oil-based urethane will produce undesirable yellowing, not to mention unhealthful chemical fumes that will linger for months.
Another option is a grey-tinted, plant-based oil finish. It will be very matte, and less likely to show scratches. This won’t appeal to the homeowner who wants a shiny finish.
But the natural oil finish offers advantages. In addition to hiding scratches, this floor is spot-repairable. When this finish begins to show wear, the worn area can be easily re-coated without sanding and refinishing the whole floor.
A word of caution though. Few US flooring contractors are experts in applying natural oil finishes, so be sure to consult one who is. ©
–Nancy Kibbee is editor at www.naturalinteriors.com. Are you a Greater Cincinnati resident who wants to see samples of finished discussed in this post? Let us know at 513-984-9472 or firstname.lastname@example.org.