When selecting the floors for my new home, what are the basics regarding
butting different types of floors?
The most basic principle of butting floors is to have as few as possible!
When different materials, finishes or colors are adjacent to one another,
their joint appears as a dark line. This line is very pronounced on the floor.
And, the more lines on the floor, the choppier the space becomes.
Sometimes lines are desired in order to make one material "pop" giving
that material more importance over another. This intentional design feature
works well but do not overwhelm the home with too many of them! Strategic
planning in making thresholds blend from one room's flooring to another's
flooring is critical to a well designed home.
The best place to begin the planning is at the front door! The foyer will
set the look and tone of your home so make your choice based upon the
impression you wish to convey to your guests, therefore, formal vs. informal.
Once the material is chosen, determine if this material can be carried further
into the home and crossover into the adjacent spaces so that the main
entertaining spaces are consistent. Since the living room and dining room
typically are the adjacent spaces, a marble from the foyer may not be
desired in these rooms. If this is so and a wood is selected for them,
remember that the amount of color contrast between the two finishes will
determine how much the marble will "pop". If you don't wish this effect,
then consider a stain that does not have a tremendous contrast to the marble
keeping the color delineation between the two selections at a minimum.
If the floor choice for the foyer is wood, continue the selection through
the living room, dining room and possibly the kitchen (although the kitchen
could be another type of material). The stain should remain the same through
out including stair treads. If more definition and interest is desired,
consider installing an inlay wood border around the perimeter of the rooms.
If the foyer floor choice is ceramic tile and it is not appropriate for the
living room and dining room, then put wood or wall to wall carpeting in them
while continuing the ceramic through to the kitchen. The tile can be carried
through to the laundry and powder room or use another tile from the ceramic
collection in a different size or shape. This concept of coordinating tiles
can be used as well if there is a powder room off the foyer and a sunroom
off the kitchen. And, keep in mind, that if there is a step down from one
room to another, it is a perfect opportunity to make a change in flooring
for more interest to the space. But, the more color contrast between the
materials, the less continuity and flow.
If the bedrooms are to be carpeted, they can all be the same color for
consistency. Should you wish to curtail the monotony of all the same
through out, each bedroom can have its unique color on the floor; but,
be sure to keep the corridor carpet a neutral color. This will allow the
corridor to blend with all the colors that flow off of it and create a
pleasant transition in the thresholds.
By following the concept "as few lines as possible", you are sure to
create an interior that will flow beautifully. This will allow the
remainder of your design and decorating challenges to come together
much easier. And, fewer lines will make your home appear much more