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Expert's corner: a beginner's guide to parquet flooring
Why to consider it, how to look after it - and more!
written on: 08-02-2019 09:00am
Nothing can really beat real wood for bringing nature indoors and adding warmth and character to the home, which is one of the reasons why it is now such a popular option for all rooms of the home, including the kitchen.
Real wood flooring is a classic choice that works across any style of property, from contemporary to traditional and everything in between. It is also a surface that is suitable for virtually any room in the home, particularly in the kitchen where it combines with other popular materials including stone and metal.
Engineered boards are suitable for damp and humid areas and can be installed on top of underfloor heating, so your real wood floor is as warm to walk on as it is to look at. An engineered board has up to 11 layers of plywood backing, with each layer glued at a 90-degree angle to the adjoining layer. The top layer of a precious hardwood is then glued on top, resulting in a much more stable floor with negligible reduction in the lifespan of the floor and a robust construction that is perfect for the kitchen.
Injecting personality and character into large and small spaces alike, the trend for real wood flooring means parquet has never been so popular, bringing a timeless elegance to the kitchen. Creating an elegant and sophisticated look, the combination of colour, wood detailing and pattern this is possible with parquet make this a real statement floor, whether your kitchen is traditional or contemporary in design.
From herringbone and basket weave to brickwork and chevron, the pattern options with parquet are just as diverse as the range of woods available. Go large with 600mm sized blocks for a modern twist on a design classic or opt for an aged design to add extra character with a reclaimed effect.
Once laid, keeping real wood parquet looking as good as new is straightforward. In fact, a combination of dry cleaning to remove dirt and dust particles, and damp cleaning to protect it against scratches is really all that is needed for a lacquered or oiled floor.
For weekly cleaning, a capful of correct concentrate mixed with water and applied with a damp mop will suffice, while to refresh the look and lustre annually, which is important in high traffic areas such as the kitchen, use a concentrated polish, again applied with water and a damp mop.
Peter Keane is Director of The Natural Wood Floor Company, heading up a team of experts that together have decades of experience and knowledge of manufacturing and supplying real wood floors. The company has been selling wood floors since the 1990s and has a showroom in Wandsworth, London.