My Favourite Floors

The floor is a great place to start to design your home interiors. There’s a lot of it and it will be a big expense. But if you make smart materials selections, you’ll be enjoying your flooring for many years to come.

With floors I like to stick with the classics.

From childhood one of my favourite interiors continues to be art galleries. Space, light, proportion and, if you grew up visiting the Art Gallery of South Australia, timber parquetry floors. Parquet is a French word for “a small compartment”. Parquetry flooring is a geometric mosaic of timber pieces.  The most popular parquet flooring pattern is herringbone, but there are many other geometric options.

Another classic flooring material is marble. (Let’s also include here marble-look tiles for those of us on a more modest budget.) Here is a contemporary home with a black, grey and white marble floor whose pattern has been around since Ancient Greek and Roman times (and still looks fresh and fabulous!). Marble also looks great butted up to a timber floor as you can see in this second image.

A timber floor is always a classic. And I think even more so when it is in a matte or low sheen finish (as compared with high gloss). These softer finishes are always more forgiving on dust and imperfections. But they also give the flooring a lived-in look and a sense that it could have been laid in any time in history. Gloss comes and goes in fashion but matte or low sheen finishes are more of a classic.

And just because you’ve chosen timber flooring, it doesn’t mean your flooring options end there. A rug is always a welcome addition in a bedroom or living area. And round rugs, in addition to rectangular, can be considered a design classic nowdays too.

Another, and very non-geometrical, classic flooring style is often called crazy paving. It is the laying of irregularly shaped pieces of stone to make up a flooring pattern. Slate crazy paving was particularly popular in the mid Twentieth Century. This was a time of houses being designed for indoor/outdoor living and, as you can see in this last image, crazy paving can provide a seamless transition.

Choosing flooring is a big decision. It sets the tone for your entire home interior. But if you stick with the classics, whatever you choose to put on top of them will shine.

More info on the designers of these four rooms via the links below.

1. Tom Mark Henry

2. Kitesgrove

3. SJS Interior Design

4. YSG Studio

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