Old is in with distressed wood floors
Clients looking to buy hardwood flooring often have a certain look and feel in mind, and frequently end up buying exotic hardwood floors that can be expensive. Even worse, the wood could come processed in bulk after its been manufactured at the factory, perhaps evoking a certain sterility or lack of character. Those looking for new wood with old character should turn to distressed wood flooring. Hand-distressing - the process of making new wood appear old - is becoming more and more popular among contractors and clients alike.
The main appeal of buying brand new distressed wood floors is that they are essentially antiques that have never been used. The rustic and aged look, with its worn-down surfaces and various other imperfections, suggest that the hardwood has been passed down over generations, with stories to share and the character that comes with years of foot traffic. Fortunately, your client can be rest assured that this wood is brand new and has never been trod upon. The magic of distressed hardwood is in the work that goes into creating such a look.
There are several tricks that craftsmen and carpenters utilize to create the distressed look and feel. Hand scraping - using a knife to scrape off the surface randomly - is a popular method. Another trendy look to recreate is the foot worn style. According to HardFlooring.com, craftsmen use handheld planes to work on the surface and edges of each individual board. After scraping is done, workers hand sand the entire surface. This process can be very slow and tedious, allowing the craftsmen to only scrape an average of 15 to 20 square feet per hour.
One popular design that will certainly hark back to the history of yesteryear is the carriage house look, where these modes of transportation were converted to residences. Some still have their original floors, which bear grooves or notches. Craftsmen look to replace these kerf marks using a draw knife over an uneven surface.
According to EcoFriendlyBuilder.com, it is important to make sure that distressed wood floors are never factory duplicates, but handcrafted. Pre-finished options are also a good idea, lest your client scrape off the dents and marks they sought. Finally, consider which species of wood to use. Oak is the most expensive but more durable, while maple offers a natural color and pine a more rustic, rugged look.