The wooden way to put on a floor show

A varnished wooden floor looks great.
A varnished wooden floor looks great.
A withered poinsettia. This may not be your fault.

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Period wooden floors are practical and they look fantastic, but they don’t come trouble-free.

Firstly, they can be draughty, because filling any small gaps or insulating underneath doesn’t always work well.

Another problem is that they’ve often been patched up over the years.

This obviously needs to be done if they’re in a bad state, but it can be hard to match old and new when you sand and stain them.

Paint and dark stains work better than clear stains, or you can replace newer boards with reclaimed period ones.

If you don’t have period floorboards, or you don’t want to expose the boards you have, there are other options.

Laminate flooring, which has a picture of wood printed on the boards, used to be the easiest way to get the look, but it has had its time.

Instead, try solid wood flooring, or engineered wood, which is made up of layers, with a top layer of real wood.

The thickness of the wooden layer varies, so make sure you know how thick it is and how many times it can be sanded.

A floor that can be sanded a few times is a good investment, as it can take more wear and tear.

Because engineered wood consists of layers, it has more strength and durability than solid wood flooring and it shouldn’t shrink and expand when exposed to changes in temperature and humidity.