The Pros and Cons of Wooden Flooring

Wooden flooring, otherwise referred to as ‘hardwood flooring’, is celebrated the world over for its timeless beauty and uncanny ability to add value to practically any interior. The question is, is this the right flooring choice for you and your family?

Here is a look at some of the most prominent pros and cons, as well as a where to find a wooden flooring supply and installation company in London that you can count on.

The pros

Few flooring options are quite as beautiful as wooden flooring. They promise a sleek, sophisticated aesthetic that can fit in seamlessly with most approaches to home décor. They are also a long-term investment. With proper care, most wooden floors can last up to 100 years, contrary to many other flooring alternatives which need to be replaced every 20-30 years, depending on the amount of foot traffic.

The great news is that even if your wooden flooring starts looking a bit worn or damaged, a complete replacement is rarely necessary. In most instances, it is possible to simply re-sand and refurbish the wood to restore its natural lustre.

Another notable benefit of hardwood flooring is the fact that you have a vast variety of options to explore regarding finish and style. There are many different types of wood to choose from and many different coloured stains with which to experiment if you are looking for a specific hue. Some of the most sought-after wood types include teak, oak, hickory, and Brazilian cherry.

Finally, wooden flooring is relatively low maintenance from a cleaning perspective. A gentle vacuuming and a daily dusting are usually all that is required to keep them looking good. A floor cleaner made specifically for wood floors can be used monthly to get rid of persistent dirt, and re-finishing is recommended every three to five years.

The cons

The main reason why some owners might hesitate to invest in hardwood flooring is the fact that it is a lot more expensive than many other options. As mentioned above, it might be more costly to start out, but it lasts a lot longer and can add a significant amount of value to your home. In short, it usually ends up paying for itself faster than expected!

Another disadvantage is the fact that you need to be very cautious about how you clean these floors. For example, you can cause long-term damage if you mop with too much water, and the surface of the wood can be negatively affected by harsh cleaning products.

Wooden flooring supply and fitting

If you have made up your mind to proceed with wooden flooring, you can rely on London flooring company, A Flooring Boutique, for assistance. We specialise in hardwood flooring, as well as in a variety of other alternatives from carpets and vinyl to laminate floors and stylish stair runners.

For more information about wooden flooring supply and fitting, or to request a quote, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

 

How to Care for Your Carpets

Carpets are a popular flooring choice in many UK homes for several reasons. For starters, they are incredibly soft and comfortable underfoot, and they are simple both to install and replace. They are versatile from a style and décor perspective, too, making it easy to find a design that fits in with your home’s already-existing look and feel. Finally, they are particularly low maintenance and require minimal care to remain in tip-top condition.

However, while this type of flooring needs limited TLC, it is still important to familiarise yourself with the strategy necessary to preserve your investment. Here is a guide on how to properly care for your carpets to maximise their lifespan.

Vacuum frequently

A powerful vacuum is every carpet’s best friend. It helps eliminate persistent dust and dirt to keep your carpet looking clean and fresh. You can vacuum almost immediately following installation to remove the residual short fibres and continue to do so regularly (about every 2-3 days) after that. The more foot traffic your carpeting sees, the more frequently you will need to vacuum. The required vacuuming frequency will also be determined by whether you have pets and if any of your family members suffer from allergies.

Spot-cleaning

Accidents happen. Luckily, they don’t have to result in the need for a complete carpet replacement. If you accidentally spill wine or juice on your carpet, or your pet has an accident, the key is to deal with it quickly and with the right stain removal products. You can buy special carpet stain removal chemicals at the shops, but there is also the option of going the more natural route and making your own. The best ingredients for this include lukewarm water, dishwashing liquid, and/or vinegar. Always remember to gently blot the stain to absorb any excess moisture before trying to remove it.

Professional cleaning

Vacuuming will only get you so far. Eventually, you will need to bring in a professional carpet cleaner to conduct a deep cleaning on your behalf. This service will include steam cleaning, deodorising to get rid of unpleasant odours, and a high-pressure rinse, which keeps the carpet’s pH neutral. Most flooring experts recommend professional cleaning at least every 12-18 months. If you want to cut costs and take on the labour yourself, there is also the option of hiring professional carpet cleaning equipment.

Invest in mats

A clever way in which to preserve your carpets is to enforce a ‘no shoes’ policy indoors. The next best thing is to invest in a few water-absorbent mats, as well as a coarse doormat for the entrance of your house. The latter will aid in removing any dirt and debris from everyone’s shoes before they step inside, which can play a huge role in keeping your floors clean.

Where to buy carpets?

Now that you know how to care for them properly, you can confidently invest in carpets for your home. When looking for a carpet in London, A Flooring Boutique should always be your first choice. We specialise in carpet supply and fitting for a complete, cost-effective, and convenient solution.

Contact us today for details!

Carpet vs. Hardwood Flooring: Which is best for your home

Making the decision between fitting carpet or hardwood flooring in your home can be challenging, to say the least, as each material has its own set of benefits and its own drawbacks.

Although we cannot make this decision for you, we can provide you with all the information regarding each flooring option so that you are armed with the right knowledge to make an informed and practical choice for your home.

Carpet

Walking into a home with carpets is instantly warm and welcoming. When you slip off your shoes, your feet will sink luxuriously into the soft fibres of the carpet without a single sound being heard.

Best for bedrooms and recreational spaces; let’s take a look at the pros and cons for laying carpet in your home.

Pros of carpet:

  • They are more affordable, often costing less than half of hardwood flooring
  • They come in a variety of patterns and colours
  • They can be used in most areas of your home
  • They are comfortable to walk on
  • They are warmer
  • They offer a softer look

Cons of carpet:

  • They usually do not last longer than 10 years
  • They do not add value to your home
  • Stains can be hard to remove
  • They require more maintenance
  • They can go out of fashion more quickly
  • They can trap pollen and dust

Hardwood flooring

Wooden flooring has become increasingly popular in recent years, with homeowners using this material to create an open plan living space that is both functional and stylish. Wooden flooring is extremely versatile and can work with nearly every type of home décor.

Pros of hardwood flooring:

  • It can last a lifetime (100 years or more)
  • It is easy to clean
  • It is more hygienic
  • It is better for allergy sufferers
  • It can be sanded, refinished, and restored to its natural beauty
  • It is a natural rather than synthetic material
  • It can increase the value of your home

Cons of hardwood flooring:

  • It is more expensive
  • It can be cold in the winter
  • It is more difficult and costly to install
  • It can be noisy to walk on

Are there any other alternatives?

If you are not sure if either carpets or hardwood flooring are the right choice for your home, you should know that there are other options for you to choose from.

Laminate flooring

This is the best option for those that love wooden flooring but have been put off by the expense. Laminate flooring mimics the look of real wood but does not actually contain any, which is why it is a cheaper option. However, you should make sure that you buy high-quality laminate flooring as poor quality ones will become damaged easily.

Vinyl tiles

Vinyl tiles are made to look like either wooden flooring or stone tiles and are an attractive option if you are looking to save money but still enjoy an authentic look in your home. Often used in bathrooms, kitchens, and utility rooms, vinyl tiles are durable, resilient, and easy to clean.

How to Choose a Stair Runner

Whether you are already sold on the idea of a runner, but you need a little help picking the right one, or you are not yet entirely convinced about this method of covering your stairs and want some more information, you have come to the right place.

In the below blog, we will unearth everything you need to know about choosing a stair runner for your home. From why to add a stair runner in the first place, to the different types of runners you can choose from, to the importance of underlay, we’ve got you covered.

What is a stair runner?

A stair runner is a long piece of carpet that runs down your stairs but does not cover the full width of the stair. It is usually fitted over hardwood or tiled stairs, and you can find options in a wide variety of colours, patterns, and styles.

Why choose a stair runner?

You might choose to add a runner to your staircase for a variety of reasons. The most obvious one is for safety. If you have very young children or elderly parents, wood or tiled stairs can be quite slippery, and there is always the danger that they may have a fall.

A carpet stair runner is also a lot softer underfoot than wood or tiles and can absorb noise much better.

Finally, the right stair runner can add a sense of style and cohesion to your staircase. Fortunately, it should be easy to find one that complements the rest of your interior décor.

How to choose a stair runner

Once you have decided to purchase a stair runner for your home, you now have several more selections to make. This includes:

Runner width

A standard stair runner is usually between 2-3 feet wide, but this will be dependent on the exact width of your stairs. You do not want a runner that is too narrow as this will be difficult to walk up and down, but neither do you want one that is too wide as this can overpower your staircase.

If you have a custom-made staircase that falls outside the standard staircase sizing, you may want to consider investing in a bespoke stair runner.

Runner pattern

There are so many different patterns to choose from when picking a stair runner, from simple, single colour designs, to stripes, to more intricate styles, and what you choose is completely up to you.

However, if you do not have a standard straight staircase, it can be a challenge to match up precise patterns such as a diamond or geometric design.

Custom runner

If you do not want a pattern on your stair runner or you have a specific shape or size in mind that is not available pre-made, you may want to consider purchasing a custom made stair runner.

Custom made stair runners are not necessarily more expensive than pre-made ones as you may not require a lot of material to cover your stairs, so it is always worth checking to see if this option could be more cost-effective for you.

How to choose an underlay for your stair runner

If you want your stair runner to last a long time, then underlay is essential. You should look to purchase high-quality underlay that will reduce noise and help protect your runner against high foot traffic.

Due to the structure of stairs, it can be hard to balance the thickness of underlay with the practicalities of fitting it, so it is always best to hire a professional fitter.

person cleaning floor

How to Clean Your Floors Properly

Everyone has their routine when it comes to household chores and cleaning your floors is no different. Vacuums, mops and brushes are all perfectly reasonable to use for regular cleaning, but they’re not always suitable for certain types of flooring. Even deep cleaning your carpets, while you can do that yourself, is sometimes best left to professionals to avoid damaging the fabric.

Below are some top tips for cleaning different types of floors properly and keeping them in good condition.

Carpets

A good quality vacuum cleaner used regularly will help keep your carpets clean from dust and dirt that gets caught in the fibres. Any spills should be dealt with quickly either with store-bought stain remover or homemade remedies.

Spray your stain remover onto a separate cloth instead of the stain itself to avoid making the carpet too damp. Also, dab at it instead of rubbing it — the latter will only spread the stain into the carpet further. With another clean and damp cloth, dab the stain again to help lift the stain remover solution and then place damp paper towels or clean tea towels over the spot for a few hours/overnight. Let your carpet airdry.

For deep cleans, invest in a top-quality steam carpet cleaner to freshen your carpets, and rid them of any lingering dirt and bacteria. If you don’t want to do this yourself, call a professional carpet cleaning service at least once a year.

Vinyl Flooring

Vinyl flooring should be a little easier to keep clean than a carpet for obvious reasons. Therefore, people tend to choose this type of floor for rooms like the kitchen and bathroom. Our London flooring company has plenty of high-quality vinyl flooring to choose from if you’re looking to restyle these rooms in your home.

However, like anything, some products for cleaning your vinyl floors are better than others. Another homemade cleaning solution idea for your vinyl flooring is a mixture of cider vinegar and hot water, which will deep clean the floor without leaving a build-up of residue like other soaps. You can both sweep and vacuum vinyl flooring to pick up any excess dirt and dust.

Hard Wood Floors

Some people might choose to vacuum their wooden floors but it’s better if you don’t. Vacuum cleaners tend to scratch wooden floors, causing damage and making them dull. Instead, purchase a microfibre mop to pick up the dust particles, as this is far gentler on wooden surfaces. To clean up any spills or sticky spots, you can use the same vinegar and water solution as you do on vinyl flooring. Just make sure you’re not making the floor too damp to avoid the wood absorbing excess water or ruining the finish.

Having a clean and tidy home helps make the space feel relaxing and fresher. Having clean carpets and floors is just another part of the process, but make sure you’re cleaning the different flooring in your home properly to avoid damage and for best results.

laminate flooring in living room

How to Choose the Right Flooring

When you’re remodelling your home there is a lot to consider. From the colour of the walls, the furniture and all the other little touches to bring it to life, it can be a lengthy process. Choosing the right flooring is equally important; not only does your new carpet, wooden flooring or laminate have to match the overall look of a room, it also needs to be practical. These are the things you should keep in mind when you’re choosing new flooring for your home.

Purpose

For example, a bathroom floor should be vinyl, laminated or tiled for easy cleaning. A carpet in a bathroom isn’t the best idea as the fabric will absorb any moisture in the air and this could lead to problems with mould and damp. The same goes for a kitchen floor: carpets will only trap grease, dirt and other by-products of cooking.

For a cosier feel to a room, carpets are a good choice and tend to keep the heat in better which is why they are a common choice for bedrooms and living rooms. While your floor needs to match the style of a room, you should also consider its purpose and what will be the most effective type of floor.

Durability

It’s important to invest in flooring that will last and be able to withstand constant use. If you live with children or even pets, consider the increased likelihood of wear and tear to a carpet. The most durable types of flooring include vinyl, laminate, stone or ceramic. You can find top-quality laminate flooring in London provided by A Flooring Boutique if this is your preferred choice. These types of flooring should certainly be used for rooms like kitchens, bathrooms and entry halls.

Quality

The durability of your flooring will also come to down the quality. Although having new flooring laid in your home can be expensive, it is worth buying the best you can afford to make sure you’re getting the best floor possible. It will be a lot more cost-effective in the long run, as a low-quality carpet, vinyl or any other type of flooring is more likely to succumb to damage and become worn-out more quickly. You can ask for sample tiles or carpet and test them at home before you buy to check the quality and how easy they are to clean, etc.

Style

Finally, it’s important to get the style right for the room. Although you might be trying to match your flooring with the rest of the décor, think about how long you want it to last. Choose a floor that will match most interior design looks to avoid having to replace a carpet every time you want to redecorate. Neutral tones are the safest choice, but this will all depend on your tastes.

You’d be surprised at how much your choice of flooring can change the look and atmosphere of a room. This is why it’s important to choose wisely to make sure your interior design fits with your desired look as well as making sure you have made practical, cost-effective choices.

carpet flooring in lobbey

Five Unique Ways to Use Carpet in Your Home

Carpet is the go-to choice for a soft underfoot sensation. It is warmer, cosier, and can look absolutely fabulous. Unfortunately, the carpet also has its downsides, which is why wood flooring options are often preferred, at least for the main living areas.

Carpet deserves better. It has so much design potential that is currently being overlooked, and that travesty just cannot stand. Carpet has so much to offer, and with a few unique ideas and a new perspective you can enjoy the comfort of carpet and stunning design in your home.

1. Use Carpet Tile to Create a Plush Look

Carpet tile allows you to create a unique look. Change the direction of the carpet for a minimal tile look or use different colours to truly brighten a space and give it interest. Installation can be complicated, as you don’t have the benefit of one carpet strip to keep the rest of your floor down, but the effect is well worthwhile.

2. Use Flat Neutrals to Lighten Up Your Space

If you have a dark space, then look for bright, light-reflect as much light as possible. You may also want to look for more flat-woven carpets, rather than plush ones so that they are easier to clean and cast less of a shadow on your floor. You want the space to be bright and feel clean, which is a feature that plush carpets tend to lose over time.

3. Look for Fun Designs to Add Décor

Laminate or vinyl is not the only flooring options that can use interesting and fun designs. Carpets are more than just one flat colour. They can have designs from stripes to polka dots and beyond. Go for a big, bold look, or choose patterns that use neutral colour schemes for a subtle, compelling look that will really pull a room together.

4. Use Stair Runners to Breathe New Life into Your Stairwell

Stairwells typically see a lot of traffic, and if yours is losing its lustre then the best way to add design and really make it pop is not with yet another coat of paint, but with stair runners. Choose a neutral design, or make the stairs really pop. The stair runners protect your floor and add interesting design elements for something that takes up so much space in your home, amplifying its overall design.

5. Use Carpets to Create Room Subsections

Furniture and rugs are often used to subdivide rooms, but that isn’t the only way you can get the job done. You can have half of your big living space carpeted, and the other half finished with hardwood, to subdivide the space between the comfortable living room and functional dining room. No one thinks twice when this strategy is done with tile and hardwood, but add carpet to the mix, and you can enjoy plush comfort perfect for the whole family.

Carpet has so much to offer, and with some great design ideas and the right installer, you can truly make your home pop with carpet. Enjoy stellar design and the joy of something soft underfoot.

 

wood flooring in living area

The Top Wood Flooring Options for Your Home

Wood flooring is absolutely timeless. It is easier to clean and maintain, looks stunning in every home, and of course, adds value. Wood, however, doesn’t always have to be made of wood. With so many beautiful alternatives, you can have a right look at your budget.

Before you commit to anything, however, it is always important to know the pros and cons of each flooring type, so you know which option is best for your home and your family.

The Main Types of Wood Flooring Options

Laminate

Our Laminate flooring London designs can look like anything. It can look like real wood; it can have a fun design, it could be the perfect colour. With a variety of finishes that help make it look even more like wood, like planks or tiles, laminate can be the perfect budget-friendly hardwood option.

Pros

It is hardwearing, it is resistant to scratches, and doesn’t fade. It is also very unlikely to fade and great for whole rooms.

Cons

Laminate flooring cannot be rebuffed later on, so if there are scratches or dents, it will need to be replaced.

Vinyl

Vinyl is fast becoming a fan favourite amongst homeowners. It is very similar to laminate in that it can be printed to look like anything and comes in a variety of cut options, like tile or planks.

Pros

Looks great, high quality, scratch-resistant and water-resistant, making it a better option for kitchens and bathrooms.

Cons

Like laminate, it will need to be replaced if there is damage. Depending on the adhesive used, vinyl can also be tough to remove.

Hardwood

Hardwood is the most traditional of all floors and is considered to be the highest level of luxury you can opt for. There is traditional hardwood, and engineered hardwood. Both offer the same beautiful finish.

Pros

Lifelong longevity, beautiful finish, and adds character. Hardwood also tends to increase home value, and if there are scuff marks or scratches, it can be sanded down and refinished.

Cons

Upfront costs are costly, making it a less than ideal choice for first-time homeowners. The type of wood will also make an impact, with some woods being soft and prone to scratches.

What to Consider When Choosing the Wood Flooring Type

How a floor looks is the most crucial consideration to make. Each option has untold numbers of varieties. Hardwood has multitudes of wood type and even design. Vinyl and linoleum can be customized to look like anything. Having a top five is an excellent place to be in when narrowing down your flooring option because ultimately you will also need to consider your budget, your lifestyle, and how long you need the floor to last.

1. Budget

Your upfront budget needs to be taken into consideration. You don’t want to do one room at a time when it comes to flooring, because you want it all to match and waiting too long could mean your floor style has gone out of stock or has been discontinued.

There are financing options, but you still need to be comfortable with the repayments.

2. Lifestyle

All options are ideal for varying lifestyles. Softwoods are horrible for those who are active, especially if they have dogs as their floors will get scratched up in no time. Choose the type of floor that can handle the wear and tear and still come out looking great.

luxury flooring

4 Flooring Tips for Added Luxury in Your Home

There is no better way to add a sense of luxury to your home than to pick the right flooring. Often overlooked in the design process, flooring is essential to establishing the atmosphere of your home. From ensuring that your carpets feel great underfoot to choosing a chic material that will inspire jealousy in your guests, here are some of the top ways that you can make your home feel luxurious by installing the right type of flooring.

Add Luxurious Accessories

If you have already installed a carpet or wood flooring in your home and are looking for a way to spruce it up – or if you’re trying to find added extras that will make your flooring stand out –  you should consider investing in the full range of luxurious floor accessories that are available to you. For instance, floor lights are a popular option if you want to create a boutique atmosphere in your home that also has the advantage of enabling you to see where you are going at night. Area rugs can make any floor look fantastic using an assortment of colours and patterns. You can also add luxury to your flooring through stair carpet rods, which can give your stair runners added finesse.

Heat and Soundproof Your Floor

However, it’s not just how your flooring looks that makes it luxurious: you should consider ways to heat and soundproof your flooring effectively. At A Flooring Boutique, every flooring installation is fitted with an underlay that can prevent issues such as damp, as well as helping to soundproof your flooring. In terms of heat, it is recommended that you choose carpets or vinyl floors, as they give your rooms natural heat and ensure that your feet are toasty at all times. However, if you do decide to install underfloor heating to boost this natural warmth, this works best with wooden flooring, allowing you to distribute heat evenly around your home.

Choose a Luxury or Patterned Material

When it comes to a sense of luxury, material is everything. There are many beautiful flooring options that can help your room to look sophisticated at all times. Although patterned flooring, such as monochromatic tiles and grain woods, can give an aura of opulence to your rooms, you could also consider installing luxury vinyl floors and herringbone flooring for a chic look that can make you feel like royalty in your own home.

Get Your Carpets Fitted Professionally

If you want your carpets and flooring to look magnificent for years to come, you should consider getting them fitted professionally. By hiring a fitter to do the hard work for you, you will ensure that your flooring has been installed correctly, that it looks fantastic and that it will be durable enough to withstand the chaos of daily life far into the future. Professional help is particularly useful on larger projects, but whatever the size of the job, the installation experts will make sure the process runs smoothly from start to finish.

laminate flooring in hallway

What Should You Consider When Installing New Floors?

When you’re planning to transform your flooring, there are many factors to take into account to ensure that you choose the right type of flooring for you and your family. From checking its durability to ensuring that it reflects the style of your home, here are some questions that you should ask yourself before you install new flooring.

Should you choose carpets or flooring?

One of the first questions that most homeowners ask themselves is whether they should choose carpets or flooring within their home. After all, each option has its own benefits. You should install carpets if you want soft and warm flooring that your family can use without injury and if you’re going to give your family home a comfortable atmosphere that deflects noise. The carpets that we provide at A Flooring Boutique come in a range of bright colours that can rejuvenate the appearance of your home and turn your rooms into relaxing and creative spaces.

However, if you want your home to be more of a professional space, you should consider swapping your carpeting for wooden, vinyl or laminate flooring. Not only can this flooring look luxurious, but it is also easy to clean and maintain over its lifespan. Wooden flooring is also the best option if you intend to have underfloor heating and can even increase the value of your home when you come to sell it.

How will you fit your flooring?

Although some homeowners decide that the best option is to fit their carpets themselves, you should consider booking a carpet fitting, as this will help you avoid many of the common issues that crop up when installing your flooring, such as uneven treads. Additionally, instead of spending a lot of money to rent out equipment for the duration of the project, hiring professional carpet fitters enables you to access all the correct equipment to fit your carpet and integrate this seamlessly with the rest of the flooring in your home. They will also be able to sand and re-varnish your floor to a high standard, as well as provide you with the care instructions that can help you to maintain the appearance of your flooring in the future.

How can you choose durable flooring?

Flooring is usually one of the first parts of your house to get damaged because it is used every day. To ensure that your floor lasts for a long time, you should choose durable materials.

How do you keep your floors clean?

However, it is essential to ensure that you install flooring that is easy to keep clean at all times. Wooden flooring is one of the best options when it comes to floor care, as all you have to do is to wash it with soap and water and leave it to dry. You can also invest in different types of floor cleaners to help you to maintain your wooden flooring for many years to come. That said, the carpets that we offer are just as easy to clean: all you have to do is vacuum them regularly and deep clean them twice a year, and they’ll look as good as the day we installed them.