Baby-friendly Floors

With a newborn or toddler in the house, it’s important to choose a floor that covers important points like safety, maintenance and health. For example, you will likely want to avoid flooring materials that contain allergens or trap dirt and particles. From a safety perspective, you want to lessen the impact if a child falls by choosing a softer surface material. And with maintenance, you ideally want a floor that is easy to clean and look after. Let’s now look at some flooring types that are baby-friendly:

baby friendly floors

Carpet

The obvious first choice for baby-friendly flooring is carpet due to the soft surface and higher levels of comfort (this is also great for parents who are likely to spend a lot of time on the floor). Carpet absorbs noise which is another added benefit with young children. Wool carpets are an excellent choice of material as they absorb toxins, improving the air quality – a great health benefit. Our wool carpet range is also stain-resistant and easy to maintain so it is definitely an option worth considering.

Hardwood

The great thing about hardwood is it lasts and lasts and never loses its style. It is visually attractive and easy to maintain. Plus, it doesn’t absorb any chemicals or allergens, unlike some carpets. Cons are the hard surface – if your child falls, there’s a high chance timber will hurt more than carpet. This is easy to fix though by laying down a large rug and encouraging play time on the soft surface.

Laminate

Like hardwood, laminate has the disadvantage of a hard surface but the same can be done by adding an area rug. It is a cost-effective alternative to hardwood if you are on a budget and is incredibly easy to maintain. If you’re concerned about spills or baby fluids, consider our Quick-Step Impressive Ultra range which are highly water-resistant.

Hopefully, this is a good start to finding your baby-friendly floor. For more advice, contact us through the website or visit us in one of our showrooms.

Your Guide to Hardwood Terms

When searching for a new floor, it’s easy to get caught up in the jargon used to describe wood flooring. Without a glossary, it can be difficult to visualise the various components and understand the differences between one species and another. This blog post aims to summarise some of the common terms to give you a better understanding.

hardwood terms

Above grade – a surface above ground level (minimum 18 inches).

 

Acclimation – wood floors are natural materials and need time to adjust (or acclimate) to the environment before they are installed.

 

Bevelled edge – a distinctive ‘v’ shaped groove commonly used in casual settings.

 

Burl – a swirl/twist in the grain of the wood.

 

Crowning – when the floor warps and the centre is higher than the sides.

 

Cupping – opposite to crowning where the centre sags and is lower than the sides.

 

Expansion gap – space left on the perimeter to allow for expansion.

 

Feature grade – these planks will be heavily infused with natural features like large gum veins (see below for description).

 

Finish – the coating added to a hardwood floor.

 

Grade – the grade is based on the appearance of the wood that has created the floor.

 

Grain – the lines in the wood that produce the pattern you can see in the plank.

 

Gum Vein – the distinctive streak of gum between growth rings.

 

Janka Hardness Rating – the wood strength determined by a scale that notes the level of force needed to drive a small steel ball into a plank of wood.

 

Knot – the cross section where the branch was connected to the trunk.

 

Photosensitivity – the probability that a floors colour will change when exposed to light.

 

Polyurethane – a common type of durable finish applied to the floor to help prevent wear and tear.

 

Refinish – if a hardwood is damaged or scratched, it can be sanded down and refinished multiple times to reduce the appearance of wear.

 

Rustic grade – these floors have character and charm due to their full features which are highly prominent in appearance.

 

Sapwood – newer wood found near the outside of the tree.

 

Select grade – the wood features in this grade will be relatively low and won’t overshadow the floor’s appearance.

 

Species – the type of tree used to produce the planks (e.g. Blackbutt and Blue Gum).

 

Standard grade –medium features are prevalent in these planks like gum veins and burls.

 

Texture – describes the look/feel of the floor and can range from smooth to distressed.

So there we have a short glossary of hardwood flooring terms. If there is anything else you’d like clarifying, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our Floormania experts.

Choosing a Wood Floor to Match Your Interior

When it comes to home improvement, installing a new floor can make a huge difference to the overall look and feel of a room. Perhaps you’ve already decorated the interior and now need a floor that will complement your style. Or maybe you have a style in mind but don’t know what floor to choose. We’re here to help. Here are 3 popular styles with wood floor recommendations:

Sofa, coffee table and wicker chair in living room styled scandinavian

Contemporary Rustic

Rustic is all about adding character, often embracing the outdoors and using natural resources for a raw and rugged look. Think brickwork, exposed architecture and natural elements. Solid timber floors are ideal for this style, as are reclaimed woods (which you can find in our laminate section) for that extra rustic look and feel. Opt for medium to dark coloured woods in wide planks to really emphasise the nature/outdoor concept.

Minimalistic

If your interior style mimics the phrase ‘less is more’ then you probably prefer the clean minimalist look. These rooms will often use neutral and understated tones combined with a simple style for an open and clutter-free look. Light hardwoods in grey or white complement this interior, especially when installed in narrow planks, giving a more consistent look. You can also opt for extra dark or black wood floors for a dramatic minimalistic design.

Scandinavian

Cool colour palettes, clean lines and effortless simplicity all showcase elements of Nordic flair. Scandinavian interiors make use of sources such as bay windows where natural sunlight can emphasise the décor. Wood or laminate floors that are light and neutral work well, particularly if white is the main interior colour.  A natural brown wood will bring warmth and texture if you want to eliminate a stark look. Grey wood is another flooring colour that complements well, conveying peace and tranquillity.

If you would like any further advice about choosing the right floor to suit your style, you can visit our showroom in Concord, Caringbah or Kensington or contact us online where we’ll be happy to help.

 

Decorating a Room with a Bamboo Floor

Many homeowners are switching to bamboo as their preferred flooring choice for many reasons. One is the sustainability and eco-friendliness that bamboo offers. Secondly, it is an affordable alternative to solid hardwood and shares a similar aesthetic that is very versatile when it comes to decorating the interior.

Bamboo Flooring

If you have recently installed a bamboo floor, here are some ideas about how to furnish the room to complement the floor:

Be inspired by Asia
As bamboo is a common material used in Asian interiors, you can add character to your room by infusing with Asian-inspired décor choices. Perhaps if you’ve travelled overseas to neighbouring Asia, you’ll have already collected some authentic items that you can use. Murals and fans can be hung on walls that should be painted a warm, neutral colour like cream or even gold. Red is a strong colour in Asian interiors so consider painting one wall red that can stand out against the rest. Furnish with understated items of furniture to achieve a traditional style.

Embrace a ‘green’ interior
As bamboo has sustainable elements, consider furnishing a room with similar products that are natural and eco-friendly. You can opt for bamboo furniture such as coffee tables, window blinds and accessories. Perhaps locate some reclaimed wood for shelving (depending on how far you want to go with DIY, the options here are endless). For the walls, neutral colours like tan and walnut create a good balance or you can use colours like pale green or yellow to bring out the natural tones found in the floor.

Go simple and natural
Blonde floors such as our Arc Bamboo Natural are attractive and elegant, providing easy versatility when it comes to decorating the interior. Depending on personal taste, you can either go for a bold wall colour to make the room pop or lighter tones of apricot, pink or yellow for a warm welcome. For furniture items, opt for neutral shades of brown or grey to complement the floor and walls.

If you would like to find out more about our bamboo flooring range, our experts at Floormania are here to help. Visit our website www.floormania.com.au for more information.

Get on Trend with a Grey Floor from Quick-Step

With 2019 well and truly here, now is the time to kick-start those home renovations, starting with your dream floor. If you are looking for a flooring shade that will compliment your current interior, you should consider our grey flooring range from Quick-Step. Grey floors are neutral and fresh, which means they will look good alongside most interior colour schemes.

Quick Step Grey Flooring
Interior background of living room with sofa and vase with branch 3d rendering

Let’s look at the Quick-Step products in more detail:

 

Livyn Essential

Quick-Step’s vinyl range have two distinctive grey floors – Patina Oak and Reclaimed Oak, both in a light grey shade. These floors are incredibly durable, stain-resistant and even 100% waterproof. This makes them ideal for busy areas and water-prone rooms. Each plank exudes character, thanks to the authentic wood effect which highlights distinctive grooves and saw cuts.

 

Timber

If you prefer solid hardwood, Quick-Step have many collections featuring floors in grey shades. For floating timber, they offer compact Slate Grey and Cliff Grey, both oak and extra matte. Featured in the Variano range is the Royal Grey Oak which has hints of brown in the planks, giving it an overall ‘greige’ shade which is increasingly popular with vintage interiors.

In the Palazzo range, we have Old Grey and Limed Grey oak both in long, wide planks that ooze warmth and character.

 

Laminate

The grey flooring choices in Quick-Step laminate are extensive, with various plank lengths, finishes and bevels. Products include Classic Light Grey, Majestic Brushed Grey and Eligna Varnished Light Grey. Whether you want to emanate luxury, vibrancy or subtle class, there is a shade of grey laminate to suit your exact needs.

As you can see Quick-Step have many different style and materials for you to choose from, giving you plenty of options. To see some of the grey floors mentioned above in-situ, head over to our Instagram page @floormania and check out our recent post on Quick-Step grey floors. For any other inquiries, visit one of our showrooms or contact us on the Floormania website.

4 Great Flooring Options for Your Kitchen

The kitchen is one of the most important rooms in the house so it is important to have a strong, durable floor that can withstand regular use. Here are ­­­­4 options you should consider for your new kitchen floor:

kithen flooring

Vinyl

At Floormania, we stock two brands of Vinyl – Livyn by Quick-Step and Natural Impressionist by Hurford. Both are incredibly hard-wearing and feature a sealed top coat to protect the floor against dirt and stains. The textures are relatively soft underfoot which is an added bonus for kitchens when you are likely to be on your feet for prolonged periods. Both floors are also highly water-resistant which is great for kitchens where spills and moisture are to be expected.

 

Impressive Ultra Laminate

The Impressive Ultra collection by Quick-Step is a great choice of laminate flooring for the kitchen. Not only do they have the look and feel of true timber, they have also been sealed with a unique water-repellent coating which performs great in wet areas. Any spills will simply lay on the surface and can be easily wiped away, unlike many other laminate products.

 

Bamboo

When it comes to natural flooring materials, bamboo is one of the strongest you will find. Add to that a scratch-resistant coating and you are left with a highly durable floor that can handle a busy kitchen lifestyle. Bamboo is also highly sustainable which is ideal for environmentally-conscious homeowners. The installation is incredibly easy and is done simply by clicking the planks together. No mess, no glue, no fuss.

 

Engineered Hardwood

If you crave a solid wood floor for your kitchen, why not opt for an engineered one instead? The main difference is that the top layer is natural timber, whilst the under layers are made up of strong plywood. This means they won’t warp the way hardwoods will if exposed to moisture and humidity, making them a great kitchen choice. They have a protective top sealant which means they have a tough surface that can be wiped and mopped easily.

If you would like more information on kitchen flooring options, you can contact one of our friendly members of staff on the Floormania website or visit us in one of our stores.