Best Floors For a Busy Family Home

Best Floors For a Busy Family Home

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Just picture it: Summer is here, the kids are in and out of the garden trampling in wet muddy footprints from the pool and grass, and you’re following along with a mop wondering if your floors can handle this amount of pressure. In this blog we will cover some of the best flooring types for busy family homes that will easily cater to your little one’s antics.

Engineered Wood Flooring  


First on the list is engineered wood flooring.  Engineered wood flooring combines multiple layers of timber with a solid wood veneer. Designed to allow for wood expansion, engineered wood is compatible with underfloor heating systems and boasts a high moisture tolerance level. 


Thanks to the solid wood veneer, engineered wood flooring displays all the stunning looks of solid wood at a fraction of the cost. Available in an array of wood species, colours and finishes – there’s a range to compliment every home and budget!

busy family home Cambridge Chevron Oak Engineered Wood
Cambridge Chevron Oak Engineered Wood

Thanks to its robust design, the nature of this flooring means it can easily withstand the pressures of a busy family home. Spills, heavy traffic, toys, pets. Whatever your worries are, this flooring can cater to the demand.


Not only that, engineered wood is easy to clean. Unlike solid wood, engineered wood is less susceptible to water damage and is water resistant to a degree. 


To clean your engineered wood a lightly wet mop with clean water and floor cleaner will do the trick! 


If you’re wanting to introduce that luxurious solid wood feel to your home but your lifestyle conflicts with being able to meet the demands, don’t worry! Engineered wood allows you to have the best of both worlds. 


So you don’t have to worry about anything with this durable contender. From practicality right through to maintenance, it’s perfect for your bust family home. 




This next family friendly flooring should be high on your list of options to consider. EvoCore is an innovative flooring range that is in a league of its own in the flooring market. 


EvoCore Flooring is the most versatile flooring range that we offer. Providing maximum protection from moisture, stains, dents and scratches, as well as  temperature fluctuations. Our EvoCore ranges are designed with many factors in mind to provide a great option for all areas of the home, including high-risk areas such as bathrooms and kitchens.


If you’re a parent or even a dog owner, we’re sure these benefits are music to your ears!


Thanks to EvoCore’s durable and waterproof qualities, it’s easy to clean. So when those inevitable spills or muddy footprints appear, you can easily clean them away with peace of mind that your flooring will stay intact. 

busy family home - EvoCore Premium Sahara Oak

You’ll also be pleased to hear that EvoCore comes in a wide variety or amazing ranges. Each of these offering their own perks, designs and styles. So there is something for everyone when it comes to fitting the interior of your home. As well as being perfect in the practicality department. 




Next on the list is laminate flooring. This flooring often gets the reputation that it isn’t the best of quality when it comes to practicality with flooring. However, that couldn’t be more wrong. 


Laminate flooring has actually come a long way and is one of the most popular flooring options. It comes in different AC ratings. This judges the laminate flooring based on its ability to resist against abrasion, impact and stains. All the things you need to consider with your flooring when living in a busy family home. 


The higher the AC rating, the more durable the flooring. Laminates of AC4/5 make amazing additions to family homes thanks to their practicality. 


They’re easy to maintain, available in a wide range of colours and styles, replicate real wood for a fraction of the cost, resists moisture, scratches and wear and tear. 

busy family home - Herringbone Regency Oak Laminate Flooring
Herringbone Regency Oak Laminate Flooring

So you can have a stunning real wood appearance, with all the practicalities needed in a flooring for it to stand the test of time in your family home!


There we have it, some of the top performing flooring for busy family homes. If you have any more questions regarding flooring, get in touch with one of our advisors today!

The post Best Floors For a Busy Family Home appeared first on Direct Wood Flooring Blog.

Cheap Flooring – Replicate Real Wood On a Budget 

Reading Time: 7 minutes

When it comes to home renovations, there are a number of elements that come at a significant cost. Flooring is often one of them. Think about it; your flooring has to cover the entire area of your home. But it doesn’t always have to break the bank to achieve the desired aesthetic you’re wanting. In this blog, we’ll cover cheap flooring ideas that are alternatives to your expensive hardwood flooring. 

Laminate Flooring 


Where cheap flooring is concerned, laminate is a great option!

Narrow Dark Peterson Oak Laminate Flooring
Narrow Dark Peterson Oak Laminate Flooring

Laminate is renowned for being practical, budget friendly and excellently replicating real wood flooring in a wide range of colours and styles. So you can have a high performing floor at a low cost.


It is manufactured from multiple layers of high-density fibreboard (HDF). A digitally printed top layer covers densely-packed wood fibres to create a stable core. High-quality wood image is printed, which is often paired with authentic-feeling bevels and grains, to create a hyper-realistic wood effect. This has even extended to being available in tile designs too!


Benefits of Laminate


On top of being appealing from a budget angle, laminate offers a host of benefits that are practical to day-to-day life:


  • Manufactured to be highly durable
  • Easier and cheaper installation
  • Scratch and water resistant
  • Hygienic, easy cleanable surface.
  • Realistic design
  • Available in a wide range of styles
  • Available in a wide range of budgets 
  • Pet-friendly 


AC Ratings 


As previously mentioned, laminate is up there with being able to adhere to most budgets. Though there is still often the connotation that with laminate, whilst being budget friendly, quality is compromised. However, this isn’t necessarily true. 


When shopping for laminate flooring, you may encounter a term referred to as a “laminate AC rating”. Meaning “abrasion class”, AC rating describes a floor’s durability against a number of key factors. The higher the AC rating, the more durable it is. Whilst laminate with a rating of AC1 is only suitable for areas with little footfall, the higher AC5-rated laminate floors are robust enough for use in commercial buildings, such as busy retail stores.


Laminate AC rating determines how well a laminate floor copes within different environments.

In order to receive an AC rating, laminate flooring must go through rigorous testing. Known as the Taber test, the process assesses the flooring to measure its resistance. The AC rating is dependent on how it deals with a number of different stress points. Abrasion, stains, impact, moisture, heat and scratches are all factors used to produce a laminate AC rating.

To receive an AC rating, every aspect of the test requires a pass. If it fails even one, it receives an “unrated” label, meaning it misses the mark in terms of quality expected by both retailers and consumers.

So in reality, you don’t have to compromise quality at all. Making sure you know your stuff when it comes to AC ratings can help you with a steal – purchasing cheap flooring that supports the demands of any lifestyle. 

Saving Costs With Laminate


On top of laminate being relatively cheap to purchase for your packs of flooring, there are other cost saving benefits that come with choosing this cheap flooring option. 




When it comes to your installation, the majority of laminates are available in a tongue and groove locking system. This means that installation is quick and easy, so the DIY method is welcomed. Alternatively if you’re hiring a fitter, this could save you on costs as you wouldn’t require the fitter for as long a duration.    


Laminate Styles 


Another way you can save money by purchasing laminate flooring is in the style department. 


Herringbone and chevron are traditional flooring styles turned trend, now a popular choice with contemporary interiors. 

Vintage Chateau Herringbone Luxury Teak
Vintage Chateau Herringbone Luxury Teak

With this being more of a classic design, it has typically only been available in your hardwood flooring options, however there is now a vast array of designs available in laminate. So you can save money, whilst still shopping in style! 


LVT Flooring


The next contender on the cheap flooring list is LVT

Trade Select Concrete Grey LVT
Trade Select Concrete Grey LVT

Luxury Vinyl Tiles, also known as Click Vinyl Flooring or LVT, are renowned for the ability to imitate high-end flooring designs to an impeccable standard. Built with multiple layers, this robust flooring not only looks amazing but is one of the toughest flooring options on the market too.


Benefits of LVT


As well as being a front-runner for a cheap flooring option for your home, LVT offers an abundance of benefits, from style, to budget, to practicality. 


  • Available in a range of budgets
  • Available in a range of styles
  • Highly durable 
  • Waterproof
  • Slip resistant
  • Provides warmth and cushioned feel underfoot
  • Insulates sound
  • Easy to maintain 
  • Its innovative design makes it difficult to differentiate from real wood thanks to its textured finish 
  • Easy to install
  • Easy to replace individual tiles where any areas may be damaged
  • The average lifespan is 25-30 years (depending on maintenance and traffic)


Saving Costs With LVT


Thanks to the amazing price points of LVT with some ranges being from around £8.99, you’re already getting a whole lot of bang for your buck when comparing the price to the benefits. 


However, that’s not the only cost savings you will find with Luxury Vinyl Flooring. 




One money saving method that comes as a cost benefit of LVT is its easy installation. Because LVT is available in click or stickdown options, the installation is a lot quicker in comparison to fitting real wood, ceramic or stone flooring. 


As a result of this easy installation, time and effort will be saved when fitting, so if you’re hiring a fitter, this may save you a few pounds. 


Furthermore whilst Luxury Vinyl Flooring is extremely durable, on the off chance that any damage occurs to the flooring,  you can easily replace the area the damage has occurred without ripping up your entire flooring. 


This is because Luxury Vinyl Flooring is fitted in individual tiled packs as opposed to vinyl roll. So no more worrying about paying to replace your entire flooring for one or two scuffs. 

LVT Styles 


In addition to the cost saving in terms of practicality, this versatile flooring is also ahead of the game with style. More importantly, these styles could be the difference between a large bill or a pleasantly surprising one. 


Similarly to laminate flooring, LVT has a wide range of styles available. From herringbone, to tile to chevron and your typical real wood effect. 


This means that you can achieve the looks of more expensive flooring options for a fraction of the price. Moreover, if it’s a real wood effect you’re wanting to incorporate into your design, then LVT’s ability to imitate this is second to none, thanks to its innovative design. 


It’s extremely difficult to tell the difference between real wood and LVT because of the textured finish and bevelled edges adding realism to the design. 


As real wood can be a large investment on its own when it comes to renovating your home, you don’t have to compromise on adding a real wood tone into your interiors thanks to luxury vinyl flooring. 


EvoCore Flooring


Next on the list is a flooring you may not have heard of, or if you have, you may not associate it with the word cheap… EvoCore.


EvoCore is one of the most innovative flooring types on the market and with good reason, not all of the EvoCore ranges are at the lowest of price points in comparison to other flooring types. 


However, EvoCore has expanded its ranges to hit a wider range of budgets, so that practicality, style and versatility is made more affordable. 


Our ranges offer diverse results whether you’re transforming your home or commercial property, with a range of styles and budgets to suit a variety of needs.


These exclusive ranges are designed with every lifestyle in mind. Whether you’ve got a house-full or populated office, you can add luxury, comfort and style to your space with EvoCore.


Benefits of EvoCore 


EvoCore Flooring provides many beneficial factors. Each range comes with its own additional benefits, however we have listed the standard benefits below. 

They ensure the best protection and resistance against both common and rare household and commercial activities. Below is a bullet-pointed list of each benefit that this range offers: 

  • EvoCore is 100% waterproof
  • Anti-slip surface
  • No expansion or contraction when exposed to heat and cold
  • Pet-friendly
  • Durable and hard-wearing
  • Easy installation
  • Real wood look and feel
  • Scratch-resistant
  • Compatible with underfloor heating
  • Hides minor subfloor imperfections
  • Can be laid over existing flooring
  • Eco-friendly


Saving Costs With EvoCore


Now that EvoCore has had such success in its initial ranges, it has continued to expand offering even more versatility. Through this expansion, we have been able to offer even more diversity in styles, practicality and budgets.


This is where it gains its place in this list of cheap flooring options. 


EvoCore Origins


EvoCore Origins is one of the more affordable ranges within the EvoCore brand, offering beautiful authentic wood designs for adding a natural warmth to your home. Featuring in-built underlay, home-wide suitability, high durability and a variety of colours and styles, EvoCore Origins is an ideal flooring for any home, with any lifestyle, and what’s more, it’s budget friendly. So you can have all of this without breaking the bank.


When coupling the fact that this flooring is at a lower price point already, with it having in-built underlay and easy installation. You’re saving money in not one, not two but three places. 


You don’t have to purchase your underlay separately, and you can also save money on installation fees due to the ease of its installation. You could even fit it yourself if you’re feeling confident and want to upskill in the DIY department!




If you had your heart set on introducing real wood flooring into your design, but the cost is putting you off, don’t worry. Similarly, to laminate and LVT, EvoCore Origins is outstanding when it comes to imitating real wood. Each plank incorporates a registered embossed true-to-grain real wood feel. 


So if you were wanting the warmth, and natural essence delivered by real wood, you can still achieve this for a lower cost, and more practicality. 


Amazing, right?   


To conclude, you’re not short of cost effective ways to save on your flooring whilst still achieving that desired real wood effect in your home. Flooring can be a large investment but with these options, it doesn’t have to be. 


For any questions regarding your flooring, please get in touch with one of our advisors who will be happy to help with any queries. 



The post Cheap Flooring – Replicate Real Wood On a Budget  appeared first on Direct Wood Flooring Blog.

Is There a Perfect Time to Install Our New Hardwood Floor?

Is There a Perfect Time to Install Our New Hardwood Flooring?

You may be asking yourself this question, and every home is different. The summer can be a great month for some families because the kids are out of school, and schedules aren’t as hectic. Other families like to plan their new floor installation around their finances. It’s common to pick a date, like in the spring, and then save in small chunks for new prefinished hardwood flooring.

So is there a perfect time to install your new hardwood flooring? Nope! MacDonald Hardwoods offers pre-finished hardwoods options only. This significantly speeds up installation times and requires no sanding or staining in your home, meaning you can get started at any time. 

Why Try Our Hardwood Flooring?

1) Speed

Opting for our floors will significantly expedite the application time in comparison to unfinished hardwood, as the steps that generally follow placing down the flooring are eliminated as they were completed prior.

2) Minimal Mess

Installing our flooring is a process that produces much less of a mess than traditional flooring, as many of the necessary steps, such as, staining, sanding, and coating have already been done prior and won’t have to be done on-site.

3) Durability, Versatility and Quality

Our floor type provides an unmatched hard, durable finish, allowing them to last well beyond your years if maintained properly. Unfinished floors are not as sturdy, as only minimal amounts of sealant are generally added to them. The potential of application is also versatile, as our floors can be directly applied to a variety of subflooring.

Try Our New Floor Year-Round!

Because of these amazing benefits associated with our prefinished hardwood flooring options listed above, they’re suited to be installed anytime throughout the year, so you don’t have to wait. Meanwhile, un-finished hardwood flooring is often limited to being installed in the fall. Due to the porosity of this kind of wood, they often absorb too much moisture in the summer months. This results in the swelling of the wood. In the winter, the dryness poses another issue, as it often causes the boards to shrink.

Waiting for a good portion of the year to pass isn’t optimal for many buyers, therefore choosing our pre-finished floors is the best way to go!

Making a Small Room Look Bigger – Expert Tips

Making a Small Room Look Bigger – Expert Tips

Wouldn’t it be awesome if we could wave a magic wand and add a couple more square inches here or there? We have compiled tips from experts on interior design, flooring, and color theory to do just that! We’re covering the top 3 methods you can use to maximize your small space and optimize your home, ultimately making your small room look bigger.

Declutter Your Space

The minimalist lifestyle is continuing to get traction among homeowners. Even just a few trinkets can really make your home feel crowded when working with a small space. Some of us just can’t help it! We love stopping by quaint little shops for delightful trinkets and antiques. But, small, cramped rooms don’t have to stop your passion for collecting. 

Decluttered Space


Pick a few of your favorite pieces to have on display, and then create a space to put the rest of your collection in a safe spot, out of sight. The key is to keep your home feeling fresh. Rotate your favorites every month or seasonally.

Donate gently used pieces to your local shelter, church, or community program. Before deciding what to give away, go to the front of your room and take a look at the placement of your furniture. Are there any pieces that are obstructing your view? Move them! 

You’ll find you can really make the most of your space when you shift large pieces away from walkways or doorways. Swap out tall pieces for shorter stylish options like an ottoman or low table. Your remaining tall pieces actually work best when they are positioned alongside the walls rather than in the middle of the room.

For big pieces and large hauls, plan ahead! Give the business you’d wish to donate to a call and see if they accept large pieces before dropping them off. Sometimes they’ll even give you an extra hand. If you don’t have a way of transporting your donations to the location, they’ll arrange for a truck and movers to pick up your donation right at your doorstep. That way you don’t have to bug your friends on a weekend or pay out of pocket for a truck rental service and moving company. 

Update Your Flooring

How many walls does your room have? Most people would say four, but the experts say 6. Why? The flooring and ceiling can dramatically impact the look at feel of any room. Dark wood has a very rich aurora and can feel regal and romantic, but it also can swallow up your space. Matching woods can be tricky. Sometimes the colors may not exactly match up due to staining or natural process. Swap dark-colored flooring for much lighter choices, like light oak or maple hardwood flooring; they tend to be the most popular choices for homes.


Is there such a thing as too light? There’s a common misconception that white flooring is harder to maintain. Most homeowners find the exact opposite. They find that dust is much easier to hide. Well, that ultimately depends on you; just be aware of the care and maintenance. 

Let’s say you’re redecorating your kitchen. We suggest light cabinets paired with light flooring. If your kitchen cabinets are already dark wood, use a lighter finish to run adjacent to the woodwork. 

Ultimately, if you do decide to choose a darker wood finish, trust us! You don’t want to select anything more narrow than 8” wide. Having wider boards means that there will be fewer visible seams and provide more balance for smaller rooms. Lucite and glass furniture typically is super modern, and it’s also a popular design choice for homes. Transparent furniture simply takes up less visual space. You can switch your dark wood kitchen table for a translucent set of chairs to create the illusion of more space.

Switch Up Your Color Scheme

When it comes to small spaces, less is more. Small spaces are not ideal for going “color crazy.” Experts say to stick to a cool light colors monochromatic color scheme. We based our small room design concepts on color theory.


The color wheel essentially categorized colors as either warm or cool. Think about the colors in nature, like the green in plants, the blue hues in water and the sky; these are all considered cool and calming. When you enter a room with cool colors, it’s almost like they recede away and open up the space. We suggest starting with a shade like white, gray, taupe, or beige; pick a cool neutral shade. It will be much easier to match your furniture and floor if they all remain neutral.

Our bedrooms should be our safe space to relax and unwind; no matter how small it is, we can still visually expand the space. For instance, keep the walls in the bedroom a creamy white color, and pick bed linens that are also neutral with light pops of color like a soft, warm yellow. Deep purples, like eggplant, can be used for the throw pillows and other accents to highlight and balance your space so it feels larger.

Use light and inviting hues that are all in the same family. For example, ideally, the more light we can let into a room, the better. Yet, we know sometimes leaving windows completely uncovered isn’t really an option. 

We love the way sheer curtains transform spaces. You can also pick light floor-to-ceiling drapes that match your walls to make the room look larger. There is something about long lines that play tricks on our eyes. Stripes are the perfect interior design trick for small spaces. It actually doesn’t even matter what width you use; either thicker or narrow stripes make walls seem longer and taller! Horizontal stripes are also an excellent choice because they make walls appear more expansive.

Just because your space is small doesn’t mean we have to skimp on style. Small apartments can still feel like spacious and cozy homes; it just may require making a few tweaks. Lighting can make a huge difference. You can start small by uncovering your windows and inviting more natural light into your home. Stay tuned for more home remodeling and decorating tips from the experts.

Laminate Flooring Trends 2021 

Reading Time: 7 minutes

Considering buying Laminate Flooring but not sure what style to opt for? 2021 has a fantastic variety of Laminate Flooring trends for you to take inspiration from for your home this year! From popular colours to timeless patterns, we’ve picked some of our favourites from an abundance of Laminate trends. 

  • Popular Colours
  • Patterns
  • Waterproof Laminates 
  • Distressed Wood Look 

What is Laminate Flooring 


Laminate is a popular household flooring type, famous for being practical, budget friendly and excellently replicating real wood flooring in a wide range of colours and styles. 

Villa Peterson Oak Laminate – Laminate Flooring

Laminate is manufactured from multiple layers of high-density fibreboard (HDF). A digitally printed top layer covers densely-packed wood fibres to create a stable core. High-quality wood image is printed, which is often paired with authentic-feeling bevels and grains, to create a hyper-realistic wood effect.

Benefits of Laminate Flooring 


Firstly, before we jump into the latest trends in Laminate Flooring, let’s take a look at the benefits.


  • Manufactured to be highly durable
  • Easier and cheaper installation
  • Scratch and water resistant
  • Hygienic, easy cleanable surface.
  • Realistic design
  • Available in a wide range of styles
  • Available in a wide range of budgets 
  • Pet-friendly 


If it’s practicality you’re looking for, as you can see from the list above, Laminate could very well be your answer! 


Now for the reason you’re really here; tips and tricks on keeping up with the latest and greatest in the world of Laminate Flooring!

Popular Colours 


Where interior design is concerned, colour is everything. Mood boards, inspiration pages and home décor magazines are a great source of idea generation for your home renovation. However, does this match up to what’s on trend in 2021?


Grey Laminate 


Grey Laminate has been a staple in Laminate trends for the last couple of years, and this year is no different. With a sleek and neutral appearance, this colour has unmatched versatility in complementing a wide range of colour palettes incorporated into your room design. 

Lion Duke Malvern Oak Laminate Flooring
Lion Duke Malvern Oak Laminate Flooring

Whether you’re one for a bold aesthetic, or a subtle design, grey Laminate will perfectly set off the design. This will help to deliver a beautiful contemporary finish.


Light Wood Laminate 


Additionally, another popular colour trend is one you surely expected to see in this list. The beginning of 2021, a neutral minimalistic aesthetic has been unavoidable in the interiors industry. 


Neutral walls, pampas grass, and light wood coloured furnishings have seen a rise in the trend department. 

8mm Vintage Narrow Hampshire Oak Laminate
8mm Vintage Narrow Hampshire Oak Laminate

Laminate flooring is no exception. Further adding to the neutral minimalistic interiors, Laminate is available in a wide variety of warm earthy tones to brighten up your space and feature a touch of nature. 


Introducing these tones can create a warm and welcoming space for the whole family to sit back and relax in. Sound like something you want out of your space? Then be inspired by the light wood Laminate look. 


Dark Laminate


Classic. Luxury. Sophistication. These are often all words that spring to mind when you picture a room with dark wood flooring. 


If it’s a touch of timeless charm you’re looking to achieve with your flooring, then a dark Laminate should turn your head. 


This popular colour has always been among the more favourable shades when it comes to Laminate. However, it has recently seen a rise, complementing bold designs. Contrasting well with bright colours, this helps to accentuate colourful pieces and furnishings making them stand out in your space. 

Lion Noble Malton Walnut Laminate

This trend as a whole has been largely adopted this year, with dark Laminate being the perfect component. If you’re opting for that real wood look on a budget, this is definitely an option for you, as Laminate replicates real wood exceptionally, for a fraction of the cost. 


Being no stranger to a minority of timeless classics in the flooring industry, opting for your Laminate in this shade will mean you can count on it standing the test of time. Additionally, it gives peace of mind that you can easily change your interiors around it over time without concern if it will match the flooring. 

Patterns / Styles


Who doesn’t love a pattern? Clothes, furniture, accessories and wallpaper can often be desirables we seek to find striking patterns in. And your flooring doesn’t have to be an exception.


Herringbone, chevron and wide plank designs are all eye-catching patterns available to purchase as a Laminate within the flooring industry. 


Undeniably, these designs are well established when it comes to real wood, offering that extra essence of elegance. This can however be a pricey investment. 


With these captivating patterns being available in a Laminate, you can get these amazing finishes for a fraction of the cost.




Where trending patterns are concerned this one has taken the interior industry by storm! Herringbone flooring is a form of parquet flooring. 


Herringbone arranges wooden blocks in a zig-zag pattern to produce beautiful results. This is how parquet flooring is defined – using wooden blocks to create geometric patterns.

Herringbone Regency Oak Laminate
Herringbone Regency Oak Laminate

Herringbone flooring comes in many different colours and variations. Whilst some lend themselves to contemporary interiors, others will look just as at home in older interiors – just as they did when herringbone wood flooring first made its way into homes in the late 16th Century.


So if you want to acquire a compliment or two with your interior design, this timeless classic is certainly a contender for that!




Another amazing pattern, not far behind the whirlwind that is herringbone, is chevron. 


Chevron Laminate
Chevron Natural Oak Laminate

The chevron design utilises a zig-zag pattern that’s similar to Herringbone. However, rather than being laid in a staggered pattern, they’re more uniform and are laid to form a true point. The regularity of a chevron pattern means it creates a simple and much cleaner look. Due to the pattern’s features, it also helps to make rooms look more spacious. 


Incorporating this into your home is a great way to add a feature piece to your space. With a pattern like this found throughout your flooring, you can make this a stand out element in your design, keeping the rest of your room design minimalistic. 


Wide plank 


Lastly, another one to watch out for in the Laminate trends department is wide plank Laminate. 


You may be thinking “what’s so stylish about a wide plank?” Well, you’ll be intrigued to know that a wider plank provides the opportunity to show off more of the natural grains and knots in the wood, delivering a stunning authentic wood design. 


Moreover, wider planks also mean that you’ll use fewer boards. This result in a more seamless finish, as well as it will save you money on the amount of packs needed for your installation. 


To conclude, if it’s a natural wood design you want, Laminate is available in wide planks. This offers a larger surface of more natural imperfections in the wood and supplies a rustic charm to your home. 

Waterproof Laminates


Next up is another type of Laminate that has hit the trends in 2021. Waterproof Laminate. 


Yes, you heard us! Waterproof Laminate. 


Previously, Laminate has been renowned for its practicality, ability to replicate real wood and appealing price points. However, its downfall was in its ability to survive the pressures of moisture. 

Supreme Laminate
Supreme 12mm Macro Oak White Laminate


We’re pleased to inform you that this is no longer an issue. With a wide range of waterproof Laminates approved for use in bathrooms, you can acquire that endearing real wood look in even the most demanding rooms of the home. 

And people are acquiring it! Being one of the latest trends in Laminate, we’re seeing an abundance of stunning bathroom transformations featuring this versatile Laminate.  


Valencia Tile Retro Blue Grey

Supreme Everest Oak Bronze   Residence Narrow Dark Peterson Oak 
Valencia Tile – Add Samples to Cart Supreme Everest – Add Samples to Cart  

 Residence Narrow – Add Sample to Cart 


Without reservation, you can now don’t need to miss out on the opportunity to feature a real wood look in your bathroom.

Distressed Wood Look


The last trend we’ll be showcasing is the distressed wood look. 


Shabby chic, vintage chic and upcycling are all popular interior stylings in recent years. These styles tend to feature a mix of beauty and distressed pieces within the design.


Whether this is translated through furniture or flooring, this narrative gives off an appealing rustic charm.


Why not introduce a distressed wood look? This can add an enchanting authenticity to the design. The composition of Laminate includes a printed design. There are no limits to what wood effect designs are available. 


There are a wide variety of distressed wood looking Laminates available. As a result, you aren’t limited when it comes to getting the desired look for your space. 


Residence Narrow Siberian
Residence Narrow Siberian


Amazing right? 


Overall, it’s clear to see why these trends have taken the interior industry by storm. Laminate is extremely versatile and is a great contender to pair with a wide range of interiors.  

If you have any questions regarding Laminate flooring, get in touch with one of our flooring experts today who will be happy to assist you. 

The post Laminate Flooring Trends 2021  appeared first on Direct Wood Flooring Blog.

5 Home Improvements to Invest in During 2021

Reading Time: 9 minutes

Are you wanting to add value to your home? Loft conversions, new kitchens or real wood flooring and open plan living have been revealed amongst the top 5 most value-adding property features to invest in right now. 

In this blog, we will be looking at 5 ways to add value to your home, including:


  1. Loft conversions / extensions
  2. New kitchen
  3. Open-plan living
  4. Real wood floors
  5. Designated work from home space


1. Loft Conversions


Wanting to add value to your home whilst utilising your space to its full potential? Then a loft conversion may be your answer. 


Loft conversions are often one of the best ways to add value to your home. This is because gardens are a highly thought of and desired feature in a home. However, in the current market, open plan living is also a desired feature. In turn, people are extending out into the back of the home, which of course affects the size of your garden.


So making use of your loft space is a great alternative to adding value to your home whilst adding space. 


Using Your Space


Why not create a cosy guest bedroom, the perfect study to work from home, or an extra bedroom for your growing family. Whatever the reason for needing extra space, lofts are versatile spaces in the home and can be used for almost any room needed. 


Herringbone Regency Oak Laminate
Herringbone Regency Oak Laminate

Whilst we can’t put a figure on how much value a loft conversion will add to your house as lots of factors will affect this, industry professionals research shows that a loft conversion will add an average of 21% to the value of your home. 


Adds Value to Your Home and Lifestyle


Not only does a loft conversion add value to your home, it will add value to your lifestyle. If you opt for a comfortable working space, it will enhance your working from home experience. If you opted to convert a 3 bedroomed home into a four, you have the use of the extra space to facilitate a growing family perhaps. 


Thinking more fun? You could even persuade other members of your family to convert it into a cinema or games room!


Either way, whatever your reason for converting, the extra space will help you achieve it!


Other Considerations


When it comes to a conversion of this level, there can be many factors to consider beyond its purpose, that you should consider prior to beginning your conversion. This is because these considerations may affect your ability to convert your loft space.


  1. Planning Permission – Always seek to get planning permission prior to making alterations to the structure of your home
  2. Different uses of the space will have a different impact on the value added.
  3. Different types of conversion will add different values to your home
  4. A loft conversion may affect your insurance policy 
  5. With this room being at the top of the home, flooring is a major consideration. Flooring such as EvoCore, or using Underlay will help with noise reduction for the rooms below. 


All in all, a loft conversion is a great investment when it comes to adding value to your home. It is one of those decisions that can often pay for itself when it comes to seeing a return in the value it has created, not only in space but in your lifestyle too!

2. New Kitchens 


Next on this list is the heart of the home, kitchens! 


Installing a new kitchen can add roughly between 5-15% to your property value. This range is quite large however many different factors can affect this. Size, design and style are just some of the factors that can affect the added value.


Considering the style and age of your property is essential when choosing your kitchen design. Having a period property and incorporating an all-singing, all-dancing kitchen with in-built LED lights and built-in speakers, may not correspond well with the rest of the property. 


If you’re investing in a new kitchen because you’re selling up, this may put off potential buyers.


Designing your kitchen 


Now the fun part; the design! There are many ways to add value to your home with a new kitchen design, doing the research into latest trends, and how to add value to your home with a new kitchen design is a great way to begin your design.


Below are some of our favourite options for designing your kitchen with adding value to your property in mind.


Light and Airy


Light and airy kitchen designs are currently a desired kitchen design. When you imagine your dream kitchen, does it have an island and bi-fold doors? Come on, we know it does!


This is easily achievable by opting for more neutral colours in your worktops, cabinets and flooring


Flooring actually plays a large role in the overall look and feel of your home. If it’s a light and airy aesthetic you decide on, Great!


This will open up your space and make your kitchen feel bigger. There are a wide range of flooring options available that offer lighter tones that you can incorporate. So you’re definitely not limited and budget shouldn’t be an issue when it comes to wanting to open up your room.


Make most of your space


Making the most of your space is a great way to impress with a new kitchen. 


We’ve all seen those swanky wine coolers built into an island, or the singular cupboards that pull out and transform into a multitude of organised compartments. Organisational heaven! 


Another way to make the most of your space is to conceal your appliances. Having an in-built dishwasher or fridge concealed within a cupboard space can help with space saving as having a large bulky fridge can give the illusion there is less space as well as taking away from the design and creating an eye-sore in some cases.


Maximising your space is the perfect way to make the most out of your kitchen space whilst adding value to your home.


Multifunctional Spaces


Being the heart of the home, this room tends to attract a lot of love for having time spent here. This has created a need for multifunctional spaces. 

add value to your home - Herringbone Regency Oak Laminate
Herringbone Regency Oak Laminate

Creating a space where you can cook, eat and entertain is a great way to make the most out of your kitchen, which is why this design is a desired option. 


Tip: Being frequented a lot by the whole family, this makes this room of the home a high traffic area. A versatile flooring such as EvoCore can not only withstand the pressures of a high traffic area of the home but also the demands of a kitchen whilst looking stunning in the process.


Hopefully some of these design ideas get the creative juices going when it comes to your kitchen design and adding value to your home. Doing the research into the best design for your home is paramount. 


3. Open Plan Living 


The home improvement that can add value to your home we will take a look at is Open-plan living. 


This living style has grown in popularity, providing the space and opportunity for families and friends to spend quality time together whilst eating, living, cooking, cleaning, entertaining. 

add value to your home - open plan
Luxury Parquet Brown Oiled Solid Wood Flooring


Whatever you’re doing, open-plan living allows you to combine multiple functional rooms together seamlessly without the transition of door or hallways.


Time with family and friends is of high value, and that combined with the stunning finish an open-plan design can offer, is what makes this home improvement in high demand. So if you’re selling up, this style of living might be a desired one when it comes to potential buyers. 


Some homes have multi-use spaces. One of these uses often being the kitchen with desired modern designs typically compromising of an open-plan layout creating a light and airy vibe, as well as adding a social aspect. 

Add an extra layer to your design and introduce flooring zones. This can often be a way to create distinctive areas depending on usage and distinguish between areas whilst still housing them in one space. 

Take an open plan kitchen diner for instance. Zoning can be a great way to separate the two, having defined areas with their own vibes. In addition, adding a tiled flooring in the kitchen, flowing to a wood flooring in the dining space of the room could be just one of the many kitchen flooring ideas that could enhance your space.



Mix and Match Designs with EvoCore 360

More open to open-plan living? Great! This home improvement is pretty much guaranteed to improve your home and quality time with your loved ones. Which are all added benefits after adding value to your property. 


EvoCore 360 flooring is a great way to exercise zoning within your open plan living spaces. It’s 360 omni click system allows for an easy installation and unique patterns and styles to be achieved, including the popular Herringbone design and the ability to fit wood to tile.


4. Real-Wood Floors


Real Wood Floors are a sought after flooring option for many homeowners. They offer a timeless design, complimenting any décor, period or contemporary, as well as providing a luxurious feel.


Not only that, the longevity of wood flooring is exceptional, with them lasting a lifetime when looked after property. So when it comes to a worth while home improvement, this one is definitely worth it!

add value to your home - wood floors
Unfinished Parquet Oak Solid Wood Flooring


One of the beauties of wood flooring is that you can sand and reseal your wood flooring if it starts to look worn. 


Due to the quality of this type of flooring, it’s of a higher expense than your Laminates or LVT’s. However, its elegant appearance and longevity are enough to warrant the higher cost.


Real Wood flooring is available in a wide range of colours and styles, even offering captivating parquet designs. So there is something for everyone when it comes to aesthetics and preference.


Because of the benefits Wood Flooring offers, this in turn adds value to your home, making this another home improvement that is worth the investment!


5. Designated Working From Home Space


Last but not least in ways to add value to your home is adding a designated working from home space to your property.


Working from home space is not something that everyone requires; however, it may attract potential buyers. This is because many people have families with children that may need a place to do their schoolwork, they may be self-employed and need somewhere to work themselves or it may be used as a place to support hobbies such as artistry or writing. 

add value to your home - Working from home
Park Avenue Herringbone Solid Wood Flooring

The possibilities are endless.


The great thing about this investment is that it is usually not a large expense, and you can often use a space that already exists in your home. 


An attic, an annex, a spare room or a sun house are common rooms converted into designated working from home spaces. 


Top Tip: If your designated working from home space is in fact housed within your sunroom, ensure that you have got the correct flooring to support the pressure of this room. Be aware of temperature moisture and fluctuations if this room is not fully regulated. EvoCore is the perfect flooring option to meet the demands of a room such as this as it is not affected by either of these issues.


Who knew working from home would be beneficial? In the name of adding value to your home, it can add around 5% to your property. So pull out the desks and filing cabinets, and make a start on your home office now.


Ready to start improving your home? Hopefully this blog has given you some ideas on how to add value to your home. Whether it’s to enhance your lifestyle whilst you’re living in your home or to add value to sell up and attract potential buyers, these ideas may help you decide on the best investments for you. 


If you have any questions regarding the best flooring for any of these spaces, get in touch with one of our flooring experts today who will be more than happy to help you. 


The post 5 Home Improvements to Invest in During 2021 appeared first on Direct Wood Flooring Blog.

Preventing Damage to Your New Hardwood Floors

Preventing damage to your flooring is one of the best things you can do to keep your hardwood floors in great condition for years to come. It’s unrealistic to think your floors will never get damaged, because light wear and tear is normal. However, there are a few key steps you can take to prevent more damage than necessary. 

Living Room with Hardwood Floors

Source: Unsplash

Preventing hardwood flooring damage starts even before you install your flooring. If you are in a position where you can pick your own flooring, it’s best to research what type of hardwoods will work best for your house. Some hardwoods naturally have character and more “imperfections” that are better at hiding scratches. Species like White Oak and Red Oak and Hickory are known for these characteristics, and might be a good option in high traffic areas with kids or pets. You can read more about hardwood flooring textures here

Understanding where species of wood falls on the Janka scale is also important. The Janka scale rates the durability and hardness of hardwood flooring, which is an important factor in understanding how different styles of floors will hold up long term. 

janka scale


After you purchase and install your hardwood floor, moving furniture as minimally as possible is crucial. Dragging larger pieces like tables and sofas give a greater possibility of scratching. If you do see yourself having to move furniture periodically, it’s best to invest in felt pads or protectors that attach to the bottom of furniture. Even if you don’t plan on moving furniture, adding these small preventative elements can help protect your hardwoods from accidental sliding. Remember, if you do need to move a piece of furniture, you should always lift and never drag. 

It’s also critical to maintain consistent levels of moisture and humidity in your home. Excessive moisture in your home can cause your floors to expand, while too little moisture can cause hardwoods to contract and shrink. In order to maintain proper humidity levels, we recommend using an air conditioner, dehumidifier, or a humidifier in the winter. Wood species will react differently in different geographic locations, so make sure you understand what types of hardwood flooring works best for your climate before you buy. 

Other ideas to keep in mind are to try and prevent any water damage from occurring in the first place, and installing curtains to minimize sun exposure. It’s best to occasionally rearrange furniture (with protective padding!) every few years to prevent sun damage in isolated areas as well. 

Also remember to be cautious when cleaning. No vinegar and water! Some products, like Rejuvenate, have been known to destroy certain types of hardwoods. We highly recommend our very own MacDonald Easy Hardwood Floor Cleaner to ensure no damage is done to your floors. With these tips in mind, your hardwood floors should be glowing for years to come.

A Guide to Western Home Decor

There’s no doubt that the term “western style” will evoke a John Wayne-esque image in your mind of a room filled with cow hides. But a more modern western style home has evolved from floor to ceiling wood and antlers as decoration. While you can use these elements in moderation, western style today plays into its classic heritage while also incorporating more modern elements. Below, we’re explaining the best way to achieve a tasteful, western decor in your home.

Western Home Decor

Photo by Christian Harder, Elle Decor

Choose your Hardwood Flooring

Hardwood floors lay the perfect backdrop for any western styled home. Because elements in this style of decor tend to feature bold patterns and colors, a neutral floor is a good base for your room’s palate. A more traditional approach may feature warmer oak, hickory and light maple species.

However, it’s important to note that any hardwood flooring can match your ideal western decor if you plan ahead. Even cooler colors like a dark maple can work well in a western home. It’s important to understand the overall aesthetic you’re trying to achieve first, which is why hardwood flooring is one of the most important styling decisions you’ll make throughout your home designing process.

Western Home Lighting

Photo Courtesy of

Don’t Forget Lighting

Warm lighting is key when creating a western style home. Unlike sleek, minimal designs, western influence is reminiscent of cozy cabins and fireplaces. If you’re going full western, look for copper lanterns and pendants with farmland scenes on them. If you’re going for a more subtle look, embrace tableside lamps in warm, neutral colors.

No matter how far into the western aesthetic you’re going towards, comfort lighting is key. You wouldn’t associate fluorescent lights with this decor, so embrace the cozy and gravitate towards warmer hues.

Western Bedding

Photo by Sante Fe Properties, a member of Luxury Portfolio International

Texture Brings the Room Together

One of the best parts of a western style home is the amount of playful patterns and textures you can incorporate. While colors in this type of home generally lean more neutral – with deep red and orange accents – texture is where you can have more fun.

Consider accents like cowhide rugs and throws mixed with vibrant quilts. Dark leather makes for great sofa and chair materials. Turquoise accessories can add subtle pops of color throughout a room. Whether you’re fully committing to the style or choosing a few key pieces, western accessories can tie any home together.

Design Tips for Choosing the Right Colour Flooring

Looking to purchase flooring but not sure on the perfect colour to match your design? Sometimes you can be left deciding between two, three or even four different shades that are completely different. So how do you choose the right one?

In this blog we will look at design tips that account for other factors you can consider that may help you decide on the perfect colour for your home.

  • Room Size: Opt for a lighter flooring in a smaller sized room to give a light and airy feel.
  • Lighting: The colour of your flooring will alter when natural or artificial light hits. Test your samples in the room you’re laying your flooring over 24 hours for a realistic view of appearance in all lighting.
  • Décor: Create a mood board compiled of colours and textures to fit your décor to see if your flooring will complement this.


Room Size


One factor that will affect your flooring colour is room size. Different colours of flooring have different impacts depending on space and how you want your room to feel. 


Whether it’s a cosy feel you’re opting for, or you’re trying to open up the space, the colour of your flooring can make all the difference and give you the desired effect you’re wanting.


Smaller Rooms 


If you have a smaller space to work with the most common recommendation is to opt for lighter, natural tones in your room, and flooring. This is a great way to open up your room and add an airy feel to the space. This in turn makes it feel bigger. 


Rooms that are often typically smaller such as hallways, bathroom and offices, are great places to exercise this illusion. 



EvoCore Premium Light Meadow Oak
EvoCore Premium Light Meadow Oak


There are a wide range of flooring options available that offer lighter tones that you can incorporate. So you’re definitely not limited and budget shouldn’t be an issue when it comes to wanting to open up your room. 


If you’re reading this and thinking, I didn’t want to opt for a light floor when choosing the right colour of your flooring, whether it be for preference or practicality, don’t worry.


There is a way to make your room look bigger with darker flooring too. Using a dramatically darker wood with lighter coloured walls and accessories, also gives the illusion your room is bigger, with a sophisticated twist. 


Hacienda Herringbone Antique Oak Engineered Wood
Hacienda Herringbone Antique Oak Engineered Wood


Similarly, to the lighter coloured illusion, you’re not limited when it comes to options when choosing a darker shade. 


The majority of flooring types have a darker option you can opt for. So whether it is EvoCore, Laminate, Solid Wood, Engineered Wood or LVT, there will be a darker flooring option for you. 


So when it comes to colours, room sizes and the overall look and feel can be affected by the colour of the flooring you opt for. Knowing the tone you want to set in your room before buying your flooring is important so you know how to work with the size of your space.




The next consideration when it comes to choosing the right colour flooring for you, will spark some discussions in your home. Lighting!


Lighting is another factor that can affect your decision when it comes to choosing the colour of your floor. Both natural and artificial light will play a part in the overall appearance of your installation. 


With natural light, this is something that changes throughout the day as the sun moves across the day, allowing different amounts of light in throughout the day. 

Choosing the right colour flooring: Lighting
Branscombe Whitewashed Coastal Herringbone Oak Engineered Wood Flooring

Ensuring you have ordered samples and laying them out where you plan to install your flooring is a great way of getting a true representation of what your flooring will look like throughout the course of the day as the sun moves around your home. 


This will allow you to determine whether the shades and tones the light pulls out in your flooring is something you would be happy with once installed. 


The same consideration should be taken for artificial lighting. On a night when you are relaxing with your family with the lamps on, this again will alter the appearance of your flooring. 


Placing your samples in this setting too will give you the most realistic view of how it will look once installed. 




Next on the list of design tips to take into account when choosing the colour of your floor is the décor you plan on filling your room with. 


Furniture, accessories and colour schemes are all great ways of judging what shade of floor will best suit your space. 


Choosing the right colour flooring: Our Vintage Chateau Herringbone Nature Oak Laminate
Our Vintage Chateau Herringbone Nature Oak Laminate


Ordering samples and holding these against your furniture, or making a mood board using images, tones, colours and textures that will be in your space is a great way to get a feel for how the finished overall look will pan out. 


Top Tip: If accenting specific pieces is something you’re looking to do, then neutral tones will definitely do the job. 


If you’re replacing your floor in a room that already has the furniture you’re planning on replacing, room visualisers are a great tool to use. These are a modern way of giving you a realistic perspective of different floorings once installed into your space, available on lots of flooring sites. 


All you have to do is take a picture of the space you’re expecting to install your floor. Then upload this to the site and choose the flooring you wish to see in your space. Innovative, we know!


Hopefully this blog has offered some handy tips and tricks to choosing the perfect colour floor for your space judging different factors you may not usually think to consider. 


These factors allow you to go the extra mile in making sure you’re overly confident in your decision. If you have any more questions regarding choosing the right colour flooring, get in touch with one of our flooring experts today. 


The post Design Tips for Choosing the Right Colour Flooring appeared first on Direct Wood Flooring Blog.

How to Pick the Right Area Rug

If you’re in the process of renovating or decorating your home, an important factor in your design process will be selecting furnishings. From sofas to tables and lamps, everything will affect your space’s aesthetic in either a cohesive or (in worst cases) dysfunctional way. You want your furniture, especially your area rugs, to compliment some of the harder finishes in your home – hardwood flooring, wall texture, built-ins, etc. While everyone has their own sense of style, we’ve provided a couple of basic tools to help you maximize how to pick the right area rug for your space.

blue couch with area rug

Source: Unsplash

Consider the Area Rug Style

Just like hardwood flooring, there’s an almost endless style of rugs you can choose from for your flooring. While cheesy, some describe rugs as artwork for your floors. Traditionally, you’d probably find either Persian or European style rugs lining the rooms of most people’s homes. While these types of rugs will always be classic, rug styles have become much more experimental in the last twenty years.

Styles like geometrics and bright florals are all popular in this current moment. Like hardwood flooring, the color of your area rug will also play a crucial role in the overall look of a room. You don’t necessarily have to match your rug to your wall and sofa colors. In fact, bright, complementary colors are popular right now. On the other hand, neutral rooms are also having a moment with beige sofas and cream-colored rugs. In this instance, if you’re going for a more subtle look, be sure to select a color that will match your finishes and hardwood floors. 

monochromatic room with beige area rug

Source: Unsplash

Experiment with Area Rug Sizes

If you choose hardwood flooring over carpet to begin with, chances are you appreciate the look and feel of hardwoods, so you don’t want to cover them all up with a massive rug. An area rug can vary in sizes from encompassing almost the entire room to framing a certain portion of a room. As a general rule, you never want your rug so large that it touches the baseboards or edges of the room. You still want to be able to see your oak, pine, or whatever hardwood flooring you chose. On the other hand, you don’t want your rug to be so small that parts of your furniture don’t touch the rug, leaving the appearance that they’re floating away. Most designers say that there should be around 10-20 inches of hardwood between the edges of the rug and the baseboards of the room. However, depending on the size of the room, some designers will bump this up to 24 inches or down to 8 inches. 

Rugs are also a great way to separate parts of the room. Say you have a huge, open concept room that you’re working with. Selecting two medium-size rugs – one for under the sofa and one for more of the dining area is an easy trick to making the room more manageable in size. 

chunky woven area rug

Source: Unsplash

Choosing a Rug Material

While appearance is an important factor in choosing an area rug, choosing a rug based on material and how it will work with your family is equally important. In rugs, there are different tiers of sturdiness, called piles. A high-pile rug will likely be softer and feel more expensive, but less sturdy, making it more susceptible to wear and tear. Low-pile rugs are generally more sturdy and easier to clean, which makes it a better option for high-traffic areas.

Lastly, think about how often you actually want to clean your area rug. Some rugs need to be vacuumed and rotated more often than others, so consider how much use this room will be getting and how likely you will be to clean it. 

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