When it comes to pulling the perfect interior design together there’s a lot to decide on. Paint colours, layout, lighting, furniture and decor are all important. But what about flooring? Not the sexiest subject, but one of the most important when it comes to functionality and overall aesthetics of a space. A bad flooring choice can mean the space is unsafe, unsuitable for certain uses, or just plain unsightly with the design scheme you have in mind. Whether you're aiming to create a level of luxury or casual cool appeal, there's a few flooring factors to consider first:
1. Consider The Purpose Of The Room
First of all, what's the purpose of the space? Do you need strong and sturdy in the garage? Cool and comfortable in the sunroom? Durable and good looking in the kitchen? Do you require a non-slip surface for a busy family bathroom or are you making a statement in a grand entryway? Don’t just be lead by a style of decor that you like. Factoring in functionality will mean you get the best product for the purpose and hopefully a design feature you won't ever have to think twice about. A good salesperson for any type of flooring material will ask you lots of questions about how you live or will be living in the space, so be prepared to cover every aspect to help find the perfect flooring fit.
2. Keep Maintenance in Mind
At the same time, make sure that you’re thinking about the required maintenance of your flooring choice. If you don’t want to worry too much about having to look after it, then low-maintenance flooring options are going to be the best option for you. Something like concrete is incredibly easy to look after but can also take a little more effort to have installed. Darker coloured carpet might be the best option for your decor dreams, but if it's soaked in direct sunlight for half of every day you might have to factor in some fading. Real wood decking looks and feels fantastic, but be prepared to repaint or stain each year to retain it's original look. Ask lots of questions and do your own research on your flooring shortlist to arm yourself with the potential time and money costs of maintaining your investment over time.
3. Consider the Comfort Factor
Of course, it's OK to not make all of your decisions practical ones. While practicality matters, you do also have to be comfortable and love the look too. Remember that this is your home, so you should feel like you’re able to relax in whichever room you’re designing. Out of all the choices, you’ll find that carpets can offer you the most comfort underfoot making them often a great choice for your living space, as well as your bedroom. But look for comfort in other options too and what's best for you and how you live.
4. Factor in Floor Flow
From here, you’re going to want to think about the flow of the rooms and how each flooring type meets another. It’s okay to differ your choices, but too much of a contrast throughout the rooms in your house can appear disjointed, cheap and confusing to the flow of the home - not just inside to outside, but all throughout. Look to closely match carpet colour in a lounge that opens onto a stone paved outdoor room on one side and the kitchen and dining room on another for example. There's no hard and fast rules when it comes to personal preference either, so dare to be different so long as it flows.
5. Accessorise, Layer or Border
And finally, if you want use more practical flooring choices, but you still want a level of comfort, then rugs are the obvious choice. But get creative with how you style them over your flooring of choice. Consider layering a faux skin rug, for example, over a larger thicker space-defining rug add more texture and intrigue to a room. Or use carpet in the way you would an extra large rug and border it with the same tile used throughout the rest of the space. There's so many beautiful and practical rug options, they are one of few decor items that could find a use in any room in the house. There's even outdoor weather-proof 'rugs,' extra padding and non-slip grip under-rugs, and a whole array of functional and attractive rugs for any room, to suit any flooring choice.
What's your favourite flooring and how does it factor into your decor?
Let us know in comments below.