Month: June 2020

Give Your Home The Wow Factor

With things slowly getting back to normal and restrictions being lifted one at a time, you’ll be looking forward to welcoming your friends and family back into your home. They’ll be bound to notice you’ve wrung the changes in your house and this is the perfect opportunity to wow your guests with a fabulous new floor. Let’s have a look at some of the flooring options that really give that wow factor.

Solid Wood

It’s no secret that solid wood is probably the most exquisite and stylish choice of flooring available. From authentic charm to modern charisma, solid wood never goes out of fashion and is likely to out live even you! Once more, it comes in so many variations of wood types, colours finished and plank arrangements that there’s always something for everyone’s tastes and preferences. If you’re looking for a modern fresh appeal, then a honey toned oak in a medium grade will work wonders. Alternatively, if you’re a fan of a more traditional grand look, then dark walnut wood will fit right in. Not only does solid wood look glamorous, but has incredible durability and is likely to last a lifetime, you certainly wont need to replace it in your life time! You can also sand it down and refinish it if damage does occur, which can be done a number of times depending on its thickness. However this should not normally need to be done for the first 15-20 years, so you can only imagine how many years of use you’re going to get out of your stunning new floors!

Herringbone Wood

Although herringbone wood is just a branch of wood flooring, it’s popularity has meant it’s become a name in its self. Herringbone is often associated with affluent homes and will really make your room pop, it’s the ideal choice if you’re dead set on giving the wow factor! It will add dimension and character to your space and create a whole new luxurious look to your home. Herringbone also suits all sorts of interiors, whether a rustic or contemporary look is your style, it’ll create the perfect backdrop to any setting. The many planks in herringbone makes for a gorgeous colour variation – we can guarantee that you’ll love itPainswick Lavish Oak 80 x 350 x 20/6mm

Luxury Vinyl Tiles

Although ‘vinyl’ is a bit of a taboo in the flooring world, you need to forget about the cheap outdated vinyl sheets of the 1970s. It’s been modernised to create the highly sophisticated and fabulous luxury vinyl tiles of today, they’re in a totally different ball park! With so many of us lusting after the desirable look of real wood but not wanting to splash out on it, it’s no surprise that LVT is so popular. It comes in such realistic impressions of natural products like wood and stone, that often it’s near enough impossible to tell them apart! Your guests wont even believe it’s not real and they’ll soon be dying to lay it in their own homes. It’s benefits don’t stop there either – not only is it cheaper than natural materials, but also boasts much easier maintenance such as being water, scratch and stain proof. It is also very easy to keep clean and you don’t need to bother purchasing specialist floor cleaners with LVT. Why wouldn’t you?

These are our recommendations for your new flooring project, but of course it’s up to you! Check out our products and see if you can get the flooring you’ve always dreamed of ready for when we can see our loved ones again.

Have Your Say

Do you have any flooring favourites? Let us know in the comments below!

Remember to follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram for the latest news and discussions. We’re always finding new ways to improve our stock, so keep up to date!

The image features our: Painswick Lavish Oak (PAR219).

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Ways To Modernise Your Home’s Look

Letting a home become dated not only takes away from the home’s overall visual appeal, but can also mean that you encounter maintenance problems such as: a leaking roof, mould and peeling paint. Home’s need a lot of attention and money invested into them to keep them liveable and if you’re going to spend your savings on doing up your home, you want to make sure you’re getting it right first time. Modernising things can improve quality of life, save you money on certain bills and increase the selling value of the home. So, let’s have a look at some tips to get you started…

Think About Flooring

When we think of a fresh modern interior, we don’t think of tired and ugly carpet from the 1980’s. Instead, we’d recommend real wood, laminate or Luxury Vinyl Tiles as better options. Not only do these give the fresh modern appeal but are also a lot more durable and easier to maintain than carpet. If you really want to go all out, then solid or engineered wood are fantastic choices. Wood flooring is known for its luxurious premise and will give your home real extra character. Although wood flooring has been around for centuries, its popularity is as high as it’s ever been and will certainly give your home the ultra-modern look. Once more, wood flooring is very popular with buyers and circulates heat, therefore perfect for reducing your heating bills.

Focus On The Kitchen 

Often known as the heart of the home, a place for us to congregate after a long day, entertain our guests and prepare the Christmas lunch. We’d say that if you are going to do up one room, make it the kitchen! Adding marble countertops gives a sleek look and works well with pretty much all interior themes. Glass cabinets work very well, not only practical as you can see what’s in them but look very luxurious. An island counter always works well and is often associated with high end homes, as well as extra storage!

Update Windows

Natural light is always more desirable than artificial. Increasing natural light can be done by installing larger or more windows. Old windows can be letting the heat out or cold in and therefore increasing your heating bills by more than you’d think, therefore even if you do spend a lot installing modern windows they can often end up paying for themselves. If you don’t want to change the windows, repaint the frames and get them properly cleaned – this can often feel like you’ve got completely new windows.

Consider Furniture

Like anything, furniture makes a house a home. Although not cheap by any means, getting new furniture can give you the ultra-modern look you’ve been after. Doing all the renovations in the world will count for nothing unless you have furniture to match. You want to go for a sleek contrast, this will add character and keep things interesting.

Have Your Say

Do you have any tips to share with us on updating your interior? Let us know in the comments section below!

Remember to follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram for the latest news and discussions. We’re always finding new ways to improve our stock, so keep up to date!

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Interior Design Tips for First Time Home Owners

For most of us, buying our first home is one of the biggest milestones in our lives. As well as it being a very exciting time, it is also very stressful and can be a worrying process. A big part of the journey is how we’re going to decorate and make our new place feel like home. Before we get fully moved in, many of us have a vision of how we want our home to look by the end. However, when it comes to interior, two things can get in our way: time and money. A lot of the time our ideal décor is not realistic, and we have to make sacrifices. Here are some tips to follow if you’re a first-time home owner…


  1. Keep Things Simple

You know the saying ‘less is more’ well it couldn’t be more relevant with your interior. Don’t think that you need to fill every corner with ornaments and all sorts. As you’re probably already aware, clutter builds up naturally so the less you make on purpose the better. This is especially true when you’re wanting to get that fresh contemporary look, it’s all about clean spaces. Be minimal in your approach, go for neutral flooring, walls and furniture. You might want to add a bit more character or move things around in a few years’ time, but by starting off with a blank canvas is the best way to go!


  1. Make a Plan

Although decorating is all about winging it to a certain extent, it’s always a good to have some idea on how you want it to look even if it’s not completely ridged. No major project should be embarked upon without some sort of plan and things will feel less stressful if you go into it with some idea!

A good place to start is by picking a colour and interior theme, for example decide whether you’re going down the rustic or modern route. You don’t want to fall in love with a gorgeous parquet wood to then find out that it doesn’t complement the theme you’ve gone for! Don’t think you have to be overly strict either, not everything has to be completely perfect but having some idea makes things less daunting!


  1. Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Professional Advice

Sometimes, we all need to ask for help when it comes to areas that aren’t our strong points. If it’s your first home, then it’s likely you’re not going to have all the answers and experience when it comes to doing up your new home. If you’re finding it hard to execute or even imagine your ideas working, it’s not a bad idea to hire an interior designer who can make your vision come to life and give you extra inspiration. Although this may come at a cost, it’s better than going in and spending money with no real guarantee that it’ll work.

Although these tips might sound obvious, a lot of us get so carried away with excitement when we get our new home (understandable!) that we often make rash decisions without thinking things through. Take your time, it’s likely your home will be your most expensive asset so spend some time getting it perfect.

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Persimmon or possum wood

Common persimmon (Diospyros virginiana) got its Latin name from the wonderful fruit it produces…the name is from the Greek god Zeus and means “fruit of the gods.”

Caution: It is only after the first frost that the fruit (orange colored) is tasty; earlier-picked fruits will really pucker your lips! It is one of two species in the U.S. in the ebony family. The tree itself is not real common, so sources of this wood will require some effort; smaller mills often have some persimmon logs. Its properties, however, make the search worthwhile.

Persimmon wood is very tough and very hard, and is especially noted for its ability to retain a smooth surface (smooth and a high polish appearance) even after long usage. The desirable wood of persimmon is the sapwood, which is white in color in the tree but turns to a grayish brown color when exposed to air.

Persimmon sapwood was the preferred wood for spinning bobbins, weaving shuttles, and thread spools. It was often used for pool and billiard cues. But the most important use was for golf club heads. Today, we might find this a good wood for strong handles, or for uses where distinctiveness is a key factor.

The heartwood, which is found in small amounts only in older trees, is dark brown to black, and is not what most users are looking for. However, the heartwood is an excellent substitute for ebony. (Although the wood looks like black locust, it does not fluoresce under black light.)

Processing Suggestions And Characteristics

Density. Persimmon has a density of approximately 50 pounds per cubic foot when dry, which is heavier than almost all other North American species, except for several of the true hickories and live oak. When green, the lumber weighs over 7 pounds per board foot; when kiln dried, the lumber weighs a little over 4 pounds per board foot at 7 percent MC.

Drying and Stability. Persimmon is difficult to dry as it is prone to surface checking. If 4/4 through 6/4 lumber is treated like it is 8/4 white oak, then it can be dried without much trouble. Lumber 8/4 and thicker will require slow shed drying for 6 months or longer before it can be put into the kiln.

Overall, persimmon has very high shrinkage, 9 percent shrinkage from green to 6 percent MC. This is more shrinkage than in oak (7.8 percent) and other common hardwood species (6 to 7 percent)!

To achieve the whitest color, for many years a golf club head manufacturer used rapid radio frequency drying.

Shrinkage and swelling in use are common when the MC changes. For this reason, most uses of persimmon are for products, such as dowels, that would not become defective if there is a small size change.

Gluing and Machining. As might be expected with such a dense species, the wood does not glue easily. In other words, the species requires everything to be perfect, MCs, flatness, pressure, and so on. Gluing surfaces should be machined and glued within 15 minutes.

Machining is also difficult due to the density. Tools must be very sharp. High speed steel is probably a better choice than carbide, even though frequent sharpening is required. Nonetheless, once machined properly, the surface is excellent.

Strength. Persimmon is very strong, stiffer and stronger than all common hardwood species, except hickory. The strength (MOR) at 12 percent MC is nearly 18,000 psi. The stiffness (MOE) is 2 million psi hardness is 2300 pounds; this hardness is outstanding. For comparison, hard maple’s MOR is under 16,000 psi, MOE is 1.83 million psi, and hardness is 1450 pounds.

Color and Grain. Persimmon is mostly sapwood. The sapwood is white when first cut but ages quickly to a grayish brown. The grain is obvious but is not stark or dramatic.

Oftentimes, persimmon turnings are tumbled together (using a large drum at only 3 rpm) as a final polishing treatment. Even without wax added to the tumbler, the surfaces are very smooth and appear polished. Sanding or polishing with very fine sandpaper achieves the same results.

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Freshen Up Your Interior For Under £100

Most of us look to save money where we can, however when it comes to our home décor things are never cheap. Whether that be replacing the flooring, buying new furniture or even installing a whole new kitchen, it’s never a penniless process and we have to accept that we’ll need to cough up. But there are certainly ways you can dramatically improve the look of your home without having to spend a fortune. With the current climate, it looks like we’ll be spending most of our time at home, so turn this crisis to your advantage and see what can be done to freshen up your interior.

Take a Moment to Reflect and Reassess

Once we’ve made up our mind to update and have a change in our homes, many of us get too eager and want to get started straight away, which can lead to rash decisions and end up not doing our home the justice it deserves. If you’re looking to renovate your entire home, before you go out looking at fancy kitchens and bathrooms, make sure all the under-lining jobs are done. This includes the wiring, plumbing, render and making sure that there’s no rot. The last thing you want to do is spend a pretty penny on a gorgeous solid wood floor to then find your entire house needs rewiring and have to rip it all up. Get a survey done, talk to builders before you go out buying the snazzy parts, get the boring stuff right first!

However, if you’re just looking to change things around in your interior and a renovation isn’t what you’re looking at, then before you buy any new furniture think about furniture you’ve already got. It might be that there’s a cupboard from the dining room that would work perfectly in the living room. Even repositioning furniture can end up feeling like a big refreshing change all without spending a penny.


It would be silly of us not to mention painting, as it’s usually the first thing you think of when you’re looking to redecorate. A new coat or even just a lick of paint is the perfect way to instantly lift any interior and the best part is that it costs hardly anything at all. Why not be bold and go for a different colour to the one that’s already there, after all if you’re going to go to all that effort to paint you may as well have a change!

Don’t think that paint is just restricted to walls and ceilings either. Instead of purchasing new furniture, have a go at painting over old tired furniture and it gives you the freedom to have any colour your like.

Think Carefully About the Little Things

It’s all very well having new floors and freshly painted walls, but an interior is nothing without its soft furnishings that give it that character that makes it personal. If you’re not in the mood to be splashing out on new beds, sofas or any kind of expensive furniture then consider purchasing new throws, cushions and ornaments. A cheap, easy and quick way of adding charisma and style into your room.

Don’t Hold Back with Artwork

Any style interior, whether that be contemporary or traditional welcomes artwork. If you’ve got a room that looks a bit bare and you’re stuck on how to jazz it up, then paintings are always a good bet. The price of artwork massively depends, you can choose to spend a lot in art galleries or you can go down to your local charity shop and pick one up for hardly anything at all. If you have kids, then frame their paintings and drawings – you’ll make them feel very special and kid’s paintings are perfect for adding colour to your room! Family photos work well too and you can even get them blown up into a big canvas.

Have Your Say

Do you have tips to share with us on how to do up a home on a budget? Leave a comment in the section below!

Remember to follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram for the latest news and discussions. We’re always finding new ways to improve our stock, so keep up to date!

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A History of Flooring

If you’re familiar with flooring, then you’ll be all too aware that options such as hardwood are often described as ‘timeless’ or ‘classical’. A lot of the time, this is used to make it sound appealing when really, it’s completely true if you’re looking at it from a historical angle. So what flooring did our ancestors really walk on? If you’re a big fan of history and are looking at purchasing your next floor, then read on.

 The Very First Floors

This article would be pointless unless we mentioned the very first floors that ever existed but it’s not as exciting as you might think – the very first floors were actually the ground itself. In most cases, the floors of huts were complete mud and straw, or planks of wood placed down if you were lucky. A far cry from the luxurious oiled wood floors we’re used to today right? You also have to remember that our ancestors shared their huts with their animals and all sorts being left on the floor, which would then get trodden down and make the surface as hard as concrete.

In hotter climates like the tribal people in America, sand was a common practise. Although not the most pleasant thing to have as flooring, it would collect waste and absorb moisture, eventually resulting in a mucky clump which would get swept away and replaced with a fresh layer. Another common practise was to use shells and seeds as a protective layer. Pretty but we’d still rather have laminate!

Stone’s Vast History

With stone being use for structure and tools by humans since the beginning of time, it’s no surprise that it was made use of for floors too. There’s plenty of evidence that the Romans used it in their bath houses, to medieval castles and lots of use in the Dark Ages. This then developed into colourful stones such as mosaics that are still used today. Marble was another common material too, often used a symbol of wealth and prestige.

If you’re into your ancient history, then you’ll likely know that the Romans were very sophisticated and advanced for their time and a lot of their inventions are still used to this day. They took stone flooring to a whole new level and created a floor that was heated from below and thus underfloor heating was born. This was made so that the tiles were propped up to make a gap between the surfaces of the floor, so that the heat was able to fill this gap. This abstract invention was used only in homes of the wealthy and communal buildings and is still seen as a luxury today.

Wood Flooring

Moving on from ancient times, wood flooring has an extensive history too. A beautiful and classical choice, we can’t ever see wood flooring going out of fashion any time soon. Although wood flooring has always been popular, sales have soared in the last decade or so and is probably the most fashionable choice at the moment. With the world becoming increasingly more modern, perhaps we’re looking for a taste of something from a bygone era. Not only this, but wood is incredible durable and is likely to last longer than a life-time. Many Victorian and Edwardian homes still have the original wood flooring!

Wood flooring’s origin can be traced back to the 15th century, with a lot of old palaces and manor houses boasting wood that was laid when the building was built. Parquet and herringbone are often associated in old houses, with many of us enjoying its luxurious and interesting pattern in our homes today.

What About the Floors of Today?

Modern flooring consists of mainly Luxury Vinyl Tiles, laminate and cork. With technology advancing every minute, who knows what flooring materials could emerge in the future?

Have Your Say

Do you have any knowledge of the history of flooring? Let us know in the comments down below!

Remember to follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram for the latest news and discussions. We’re always finding new ways to improve our stock, so keep up to date!

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