Flat Out


By Ann-Marie Appleton

Flooring makes a big impact to our lives and it is such a huge subject to cover, as there is so much to choose from – carpet, tiles and hardwood seem to be the most popular options, but you can have cork, vinyl, laminate, linoleum, bamboo, rubber, glass tiles, and don’t forget the humble rug, which can be the cherry on top of the flooring cake!

ince the floor is usually the largest surface in a home, it lays the foundation for the entire look of the space, in terms of —colour, style, texture, and pattern.

A new floor can be a huge investment, so you will want a surface that will last for years. Your floor choice is about balancing your needs with your style and your budget.

Take your time and make an effort to find out from the professionals what is available to you now, as it maybe sometime since you last made any flooring decisions or purchases.

We always start the interior design process with the flooring and work our way up when clients are building a new home.

For clients who are replacing flooring, we will need to take into account their current style, furniture and accessories.

Here are some considerations we discuss with our clients to help them make an informed decision:

  • Know what you like and what is your lifestyle?
  • Do you like the feel and look of a hard timber floor?
  • Think about what you like and just as importantly, what you dislike in terms of textures
  • Would you prefer to be ‘ankle deep’ in thick carpet?
  • Do you prefer the sleek lines of ceramic or porcelain tiles?

Most people like a combination of two different types of flooring i.e. carpet and tiles for kitchen and wet areas. As a rule, select no more than three different types of flooring – it will look very disjointed if you do, especially in a smaller home.

You also need to think about how you use the rooms.

  • Will you be standing in the kitchen for hours cooking and baking?
  • Do your young children and all their friends make a huge mess on the floor and you are looking for something that can be cleaned easily?
  • Do your dogs and cats track muddy paw prints throughout the house?
  • Think about the acoustics too, as tiles can be very noisy in a busy household.

Keep an eye on the budget. Remember that along with the cost of the floor material, you may need to incorporate the cost of underlay, delivery, and installation, as well as removal and disposal of your previous flooring.

Don’t forget to factor in any additional materials such as under-floor heating, timber stains or special finishing treatments.

Ann-Marie Appleton is the director of interior design company Frobisher Interiors. She holds a diploma in interior design and is a member of DINZ. Visit www.frobisher.co.nz

Say something!