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Selecting A Floor For Your New Kitchen

With so much time spent in the kitchen, it is important to select a floor surface that is both visually appealing and durable.

The amount of flooring material choices available today is broader than ever. Popular selections are wood flooring, laminate flooring, ceramic tiles, vinyl, linoleum, and even carpet. These materials are popular in some parts of the country more so than others and vary in price quite a bit. For example, a cool tile floor is more popular in the warm southern states, and wood flooring is more popular in mid-western states. While linoleum flooring may not be as avant garde as a new material like laminate flooring, it is still widely available and used all over the country.

Before making a flooring selection it is helpful to consider not only the cost of raw materials and hiring an installer, but the amount of traffic you expect your kitchen floor to receive, and how long do you expect it to last. If you have a lot of traffic in the kitchen you may want to avoid a material like carpet. Considering radiant heat? Stick with stone or tile kitchen flooring to get the most benefit out of it. Do you have lots of kids and/or pets? Perhaps an easy to clean and replace linoleum floor is the right buy for you at this time.

Each type of flooring has its own strengths and weaknesses. Carpet flooring is quiet and comfortable to walk on, but more difficult to clean when stained and not as durable. Wood flooring is fairly durable and works great with some designs, but can be expensive require special maintenance, and isn't tolerant of water. Laminate flooring provides the look of a wood flooring, but is easier to maintain.

If you're leaning towards getting a bright, neutral-toned flooring, remember that this will place emphasis on the overall impression of light space, while a darker (perhaps rich wood) floor will add to the ambience of warmth and coziness in your living space. Your floor's finish may also contribute to the feel of things. A shiny gloss coating on your floor can add to the spaciousness. While light, neutral tones are used more frequently than dark and rich colors, designers will still use a darker color for medium sized rooms if the wall and furniture colors permit. Otherwise, usage of a lighter colored floor for a small helps avoid a cramped, claustrophobic feeling. Using a deep color in a large room can be too visually strong and distracting, so designers will often opt for a lighter color here as well.

Using the same flooring for an entire house isn't always feasible, and quite frankly, could be boring! Rather than using the same color, consider using a similar tonal range for all the floors within your house to maintain a feeling of continuity of design while still allowing each room or section to have its own distinct flavor.
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