Though much attention is paid to the walls and accoutrements of your design space, just as much attention should be placed concerning your flooring solutions. A solid floor plan, from a material, accessories, and functionality perspective, will help anchor your design ideas with practical use. Consider what you need your flooring to accomplish, and who will be using it – an expensive Persian rug, for example, does not jibe with messy kids and pets.
Look to your feet – and your back
You may not realize it, but your flooring has a great deal to do with your health and overall quality of living. Hardwood floors, or floors constructed of materials with little to no spring in them, can cause fatigue in your back and legs if used constantly. If you are the type of person who is on their feet all throughout the day, look for flooring solutions that have some give, such as carpeting and rugs. If you are in the kitchen constantly, consider selectively chosen mats laid over hardwood and tile to relieve pressure.
You will also wish to consider who will be using the space when considering flooring options. There are absolutely gorgeous living spaces in homes with plush, rich carpeting and luxurious Persian rugs that you may consider replicating in your own home, but rest assured there are no children, pets, or messy people living there. For kids and pets, look to use durable materials such as hardwood for floor options – this simplifies your life and makes clean up, including the stereotypical but very real grape juice spill, a breeze. For messy adults, well – that’s a behavioral change you will just have to deal with on your own.
Discovering a room’s purpose
Besides knowing the general use of a room, it is wise foresight to consider how the room will be used. A showcase formal living room that will only be visited during holiday gatherings can have more design attention placed in high end flooring solutions. Less traffic means greater opportunity for opulent flooring options such as those Persona rugs you’ve heard so much about. If your living room will be the family gathering space for homework, television, and the occasional meal on movie night, choose comfortable yet durable carpeting designed for ease of cleaning and maintenance.
Choose carpet colors that compliment your walls, preferably solids. Using darker colors allows for the occasional stain to not be such an inconvenience, and long lasting fibers with good color impregnation stands up to long term, heavy use. Consult with your interior designer for appropriate options.
Wood flooring vs. other floor by floor
For a two-story home, look to have hardwood floors such as pine or long lasting bamboo at least as your underlayment. You can incorporate area rugs on top of hardwood for texture and depth if you wish, and this way will not be locked in to a long term commitment to style. Downstairs spaces tend to see more ‘accidents’ so the school of thought on easy to clean flooring is to go with what makes most sense.
For the upstairs, plan on using carpeting and durable area rugs for bedroom and hallway use. Your upstairs bath should have tile for moisture and easy clean up control, but the remainder of the floor should be focused on comfort and style. Who wants to wake up to cold feet? Carpeting and rugs offer everyday luxury at reasonable cost, and allow you to move your color palette to include the ground you walk upon. Choose neutral of lighter colors when making your choice to incorporate your room’s design theme without difficulty.