Sheila Rich Interiors: Design Blog

Helpful tips and suggestions on designing your interior.

Wood Flooring - A Trend with Staying Power

Wood flooring is a warm, beautiful choice for almost any room in your home. Today, many homeowners are choosing wood over wall-to-wall carpeting, sometimes using area rugs to ground a furniture grouping or continue a color theme. This month, I'm happy to welcome guest blogger and wood flooring expert Jonathan Sapir M.D. of London based Wood and Beyond. If you're considering wood flooring for your home, his advice can help you make the right choice for your family and lifestyle.

Wood flooring options have evolved in recent years, making wood more suitable in a greater number of interiors. In this piece we aim to bring you up to speed on the latest trends.

Wood Flooring Types

There are actually two types of wood flooring: One is made from complete wood, while a close alternative is made from wood and wood substitute such as MDF and Plywood. A growing trend is to fit wood flooring in areas which were seen as ‘off limits’ to wood just a few years ago. You would do well to consider both options.

Solid Wood Flooring


– These floorboards are made from 100% wood and are the most common in residential and commercial interiors. The word ‘solid’ in their description comes from the complete use of wood. The solid type is perfectly suitable in most areas of the project, with the exception of wet or humid areas such as the bathroom. This is directly related to the natural tendency of wood to expand and contract in the face of temperature changes.

Engineered Wood Flooring

– In recent years an alternative type referred to as ‘engineered’ wood flooring has grown in engineeredpopularity. This time around, each floorboard is made together with artificial materials, making it stable in wet and humid areas. The top of the floorboard contains wood, but the remainder is made from layers of MDF, Plywood and even Softwood. This varied structure of natural and manmade materials means that for the first time you are able to install wood flooring in all areas of the project, in wet and humid areas and even on top of under-floor heating.

Wood Flooring Colors

Another major development is the availability of wood flooring in a wide array of colors. No longer are you limited to a few shades of gold or honey color. It is now possible to find wood flooring in white, black, grey and other bold colors - amazing! Here are a few examples that could fit your future interior.


Wood Flooring Features

Every plank of wood flooring contains natural features. For example, color variations (light vs. dark), sapwood, knots and grain markings. In some interiors, the presence of these features is welcomed and even encouraged, in others, a more understated, uniform look is required. Therefore, nowadays you will find four grades of wood flooring, each displaying different levels of natural features.


AB Grade

– This is a premium grade where sapwood and knots are very limited. As a result, it is the dearest of the four. If the interior requires a flat uniform look, AB grade is the right choice. The AB grade is also known as prime grade.


ABC Grade

– Another premium grade, however this time random sapwood and knots may appear, thereby giving the unmistaken impression of real wood. The floorboards will likely match very closely in terms of color. The ABC grade is also known as select grade.


ABCD Grade

– Various floorboards in one pack of ABCD grade will start to differ in color tone. Also, random sapwood and knots will appear. Knots should not exceed 30mm in size to keep within this grading. The ABCD grade is also known as natural grade.


CD Grade

– The most vibrant and warm is the CD grade, also known as rustic or rural grade. Color variations between floorboards are plentiful and plenty of knots and sapwood are to be expected. CD is also the most affordable grade.

We hope this has helped. For more information on your interior design options, talk to Sheila Rich Interiors.

Written by Jonathan Sapir M.D. of London based Wood and Beyond. Wood and Beyond are ethical vendors of hardwood from flooring to decking and worktops.

The statements expressed in this guest post are those of the author alone and are not an endorsement by/do not necessarily represent those of Sheila Rich Interiors. The accuracy and validity of any statements made within this post are not guaranteed. Sheila Rich Interiors accepts no liability for any errors, omissions, or representations. The copyright of this content belongs to the author and any liability with regard to infringement of intellectual property rights remains with them.


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