I've had the pleasure on a few projects now to help clients select their flooring. That is extending into my personal realm of late as we select flooring for our own home as well as are presenting options to other family members for their houses. What we have discovered in our own pursuit of flooring is that there are some new kids on the underfoot block.
I suppose I shouldn't really call them old but a few flooring types that have been around for a good long while in the residential side of design include: carpet, hardwood, engineered hardwood, laminate, tile, cork, bamboo, and the trusty ol' vinyl. Yes, there are new strides being made in each of these areas all the time and us designery types love seeing the new shiny things, but mostly, the variations are more in terms of look.
For example, now you can buy ceramic tile that looks like wood. And it truly does look like wood! Laminates are varying in terms of look but there are also additions being made such as a layer of cork on the back to help eliminate the unfortunate sound of laminate. And engineered hardwoods are being restructured all the time to allow a greater variety of selection available in a large geographical area. And all of these options vary in price, look, and availability.
As we headed out the door, my loving man and I, to go select flooring for our own renovation project, we had a few ideas in mind. We knew we did not want to install hardwood or tile as we didn't like the hardness or wear for our home, but most importantly, knew we would not gain the investment back on resale; we definitely didn't want the old school linoleum, budget be damned; and we new we wanted something a bit quieter if we could find it.
What we found was a product that I had been introduced to some months back and had completely forgotten about - loose lay vinyl tile.
Loose lay vinyl tile. Ok, here's the breakdown:
Imagine a tile:
Now imagine that that tile is not made of ceramic or porcelain, but layers of vinyl. It's a bit more complicated than that but essentially you have a tile that is roughly half the depth of a ceramic tile and it's flexible. What's cool about it is that the installation actually could not be easier.
Here's a short video from the manufacturer Karndean about how to install their loose lay vinyl tile:
If you didn't catch that, literally you make sure you have a clean, level subfloor and then you just lay those babies down right over top. No clicking, no gluing, just lay 'em down and move on!
Now, that said, when we spoke to our flooring consultant about the installation for our home, she did say that at times, some manufacturers will recommend gluing down the PERIMETER ONLY just to ensure that there isn't any shift further into the room. I also asked specifically about how thermostable the product was as we get large amounts of direct sunlight into our home at different times of the year. Our consultant noted that this was one of the most stable products available, that we wouldn't need to worry about bubbling or shrinking and that the products are fairly UV resistant to color fade. HOORAY!!
Our take away on this product is that it's going to be installed throughout our main floor and both bathrooms (totally suitable for that application also). Once installed, I'll be sure to share with you tips and tricks of the install (because we'll be doing it ourselves) and our thoughts of the look and feel once in! Here's a sneak peak of some of the samples we'll be installing...
Stay tuned - we managed to finish my Mom's kitchen renovation in only 8 DAYS and I'll be sharing both the experience and some DIY tips that will hopefully help you out!
As always, if you have questions or comments, please share them below. I love to hear from you AND, as our Diamond Elite member, you have access to one (1) Ask The Designer question every 60 days! Until then, go enjoy some sunshine and stay tuned for more on how to create your very own beautiful, personal spaces!