The Evolution of Residential Flooring
Wood grains continue to be a driving force for all flooring products. The fastest growing segment of wood grain design is being offered across the board in all flooring categories. We have gotten away from the standard, narrow strip oak look and have gone to wide widths with a variety of interesting finishes; hand rubbed, oiled, scraped, wire brushed, fumed and flamed. The rustic wood looks are becoming more sophisticated looking. Texture is so important to today’s consumer, not just for the visual effect, but people like to touch and feel a variety of different finishes. As the texture increases in wood grain products, the gloss level is decreasing. We are seeing very low gloss levels which give them a very matte appearance. The reclaimed, re-purposed, “Industrial Chic” style remains a dominant trend for both residential and commercial markets. This look is not as rustic as it was in years passed as it comes with a refined wood grain with less knots and rich hand-rubbed finishes. This rich look of the new hardwoods has transcended into the very popular luxury vinyl plank category.
One of the biggest reasons homeowners are attracted to luxury vinyl planks is its ability to replicate high-end looks of today’s popular hardwood and ceramic floors but with a much lower price tag. LVP manufacturers are able to use 3D technology and transfer images to a vinyl plank or vinyl tile products. The flooring not only replicates the look of real wood or stones but it also reproduces color variations and texture. From popular gray tones to wider and longer planks that include hand-scraped and wire brushed looks, LVP and LVT products are the latest in flooring trends.
Each season new shapes and sizes naturally emerge into the ceramic and porcelain tile market. We mentioned that wood look tile has been established as a favorite this year. The trend in the wood looks is shifting somewhat to incorporate multiple uses for this product line. No more do we just install it on floors. We are taking it to walls, ceilings, shower walls and shower pans. Look for these planks in interesting patterns, especially herringbone. Another tile trend that is here to stay is the cement-look tile. Cement visuals will take on a large format size, with rectangles being the driving force. Softer and warmer colors like gray tones and taupe make cement looks suitable for all types of design. Just like the wood looks, brick tiles are getting a facelift with painted looks. Painted brick has that retro look with a contemporary flair. This year we are not only seeing that brick look on walls but it’s been taken to the floors as well. Another classic high end look that everyone is after is the look of marble. Porcelain tile has come to play in this design trend with a variety of shapes and sizes from large format polished looks to small, unique mosaic shapes. This enduring classic marble look with its white background and grey veining has huge appeal for today’s consumer. The looks are more realistic than ever with a fraction of a marble price tag.
Flooring is the single biggest visual element in the home today. They set the mood for the home and tie the house together. Today’s home owners have endless choices. If you would like to see the inspiring trends in today’s market, contact me for all of your flooring needs. Creating that unique look is what I do best.
Touch of Color Design Group
Regional Design Center Manager