Hardwood floors, although relatively expensive, are warm underfoot, look smart and are highly durable. Wood is available in plank, strip or parquet options and in differing widths and thickness. Solid or engineered wood options are available – prices will depend on the grade of the wood, which is determined by how clear or variegated its appearance. Whichever type of wood you choose always check that it has come from a sustainable source.
A natural material, Creates a sense of sophisticatiOn
Ceramic, slate, marble, terracotta, stone, mosaic and porcelain – all these natural materials with their unique markings make a definite style statement. They are clean, hygienic and durable enough to last a lifetime. Maintenance is as straightforward as an occasional wipe-over.
Linoleum / Marmoleum
An environmentally-friendly choice, Marmoleum is a natural product made from linseed oil, woodflour, pine rosin, jute and limestone. Hygienic and anti-static, easy to clean and hardwearing, Marmoleum comes in a wide range of colours and designs. It lasts for many years but – good news for the consumer with a conscience – when it is eventually discarded it is completely biodegradable.
Another eco option – cork is a natural and renewable material harvested from the bark of the cork oak tree without damaging or felling the tree. Cork flooring can be stained in a variety of colours and can be supplied with a natural, acrylic, hard wax or PVC finish. The latter is the most durable. It is a sound and thermal insulator, retains its shape, is warm to the touch, and comfortable to walk on.
Although many people use the terms vinyl and linoleum interchangeably, vinyl is actually a synthetic product. It provides a very hard-wearing surface and is available in a wider range of styles, colours and textures than any other floor covering.
Wood-effect laminate flooring is an interlocking system that uses the tongue and groove method to join individual planks. This can be done either by glueing the planks or clipping them together using one of a number of dry joint methods. A melamine resin finish gives laminate great durability, plus wear, stain and UV light resistance.
Do not use anywhere near real hardwood flooring.
This is a cold and hard material but it provides an industrial look that is in keeping with some ultra-modern kitchens. It is non-porous, easy to maintain and can be stained.