Thursday, October 13, 2011

Hardwood Choices


We all have heard building a house can be a challenge (understatement of the year!). I knew going into this that there would be tough decisions but I never thought deciding on a color of wood flooring would take this long. In the grand scheme of life this decision is microscopic, but somehow it matters.

We have gotten fed up with making decisions at a few points during the home building process. We have to remind ourselves constantly that the more time and thought we put into our choices, the better and more worth-while it will be down the road. So I'm thinking if we live in this house till we die, that's maybe 60 years, then I want to still love our hardwood floors. This is probably not a very practical line of thinking but stay with me here. The wood flooring for most of the main floor of the house is going to run around $7 grand installed so I don't want to ever replace it. Ever.



So let me know what you think. All three are the same wood (maple) and the same line from Mohawk, called Santa Barbara. It is an engineered hardwood and has details called "hand scraped" where some spots are kind of textured and roughed up a little.



We like all three stain choices for different reasons but none of them stick out as the clear winner.


This is a close up of the "Chocolate" stain. First of all we love the name and the dark rich color. I have been warned that the darker the floor the easier you can see dust and scratches stand out. My concern is that all the trim in the whole house is white and I don't want the house to feel so stark with black and white throughout.


Here is a closer look at "Light Amber", so now we are moving in to beer inspired colors. This one is very warm with all its red/orange tones.


Finally we come to our coffee named flooring called "Mocha". This one seems like the safe, comfortable choice with its not too dark and not too light vibe. Our concern is that it might be to neutral and forgettable.


Here is a cross-section of an engineered hardwood floor. It is real hardwood but instead of being one solid slab, it is actually several layers in different directions which helps make the floor more stable over time.



So whats the verdict?
 
 
***Update: We went with Mocha in the end and we are very happy with it. It is warm yet neutral with the bolder paint colors in the house. ************

14 comments:

  1. Mocha - It is neutral, and that way it will be easier to change decor around it throughout the years. Plus it has more of what you think of as a natural wood color

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  2. This is tough! I am going to agree with Jessica though and say Mocha would be my number one choice. It is a natural wood color and over the years you might want to change your decor and like Jessica said it would be the easiest. You could do almost any color scheme with it. They are all very pretty colors however and I am sure whatever one you guys pick will be perfect for you two! :)

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  3. I like Mocha the best! I agree that you will be able to do pretty much anything with it.

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  4. Another vote for Mocha. I would say Chocolate for pure aesthetic reasons, but I have heard the same negative reviews that you have. Mocha is still rich and dramatic without the risk, I think.

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  5. Mocha...all this is great, you're doing a fantastic job! Good for you guys...

    Dan N.

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  6. I'm gunna go against the flow and make this decision harder for you and say that I like the Amber one best. I think it looks like it would make your house look warmer (like you said) and brighter. But the Mocha one is a close second. I don't really care for super dark wood so I'm not a huge fan of the chocolate one. But our opinions don't matter as long as you guys like it :)

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  7. Did you do the mocha? we are debating on saddle oak or mocha color..if you did the mocha would you mind sending a pic of the finished floor? :)

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    1. Kerri, We decided on Mocha. It wasn't too brown and lifeless like we worried about. We are weeks away from moving into the new house, so I haven't even gotten to see much of the hardwood. It is under a protective paper layer at the moment. I would be more than happy to share some photos in a few weeks with you of the final product!

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    2. oh great..We are finishing our basement and it is ok to put below grade level. We were worried about being to brown too, but I wanted the maple, not the oak.. the other colors seemed too orange like or dark. The mohawk catalog has a pic of the mocha flooring and it looks nice as long as it is accurate! Ah..choices! Hope the move goes well:) We finished building a year ago and I still feel like there are so many projects!

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    3. Yes, we wanted the maple as well (I have never been a fan of the look of Oak grain). From what I can view of our floors, they are rich and warm. I can't wait to share a photo with you soon of them!

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    4. Kerri, The photos of the wood floor are up on the blog now. We are so happy with the Mocha choice. Hope the photos help
      http://imarriedatreehugger.blogspot.com/2012/02/wood-floors-unveiled.html

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  8. We are looking at Mohawk engineered flooring like this and I was wondering how this has held up for you since it's been several years now.

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    1. Thanks for the comment! It's been about 3 years since we moved in and they are holding up nicely. I will saw with kids though, large scratches have happened (chairs dragged across the floor, that sort of thing). I wish we had gotten something with less of a shine to it and I think the scratches would be less visible. I still love the color we picked and the hand scraped look.

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