Flooring samples!

Look what arrived in the mail today from my favorite lumberyard--that would be the lumberyard owned by my brother-in-law, in case your wondering. Yay for family!

Sorry for the crummy phone photos--I still haven't found our little camera amid the chaos that is our current state of living. Perhaps my handy hubby is right--there's a lot of half-finished projects around here. What can I say. I get distracted and like to start something new. Oh look! A squirrel! 

I digress. 

We started talking to my brother-in-law about flooring before we even moved into the new place. Here's the deal--this house has a lot of carpet. (Every room that isn't carpeted has linoleum, except for the tiled basement bath.) Now, there's nothing wrong with having carpet in a house. It's warm, quiet and easy to replace. But my dust and animal allergies makes carpet my least favorite floor covering. I get a headache and stuffy nose when I'm in a room with carpet--guaranteed. And a carpeted house that used to have a cat like ours? Let's just say it's not pleasant. So we knew one of the first major tasks we had ahead of us was to take out the carpet. And we figured that since we were replacing most of the flooring anyway we may as well take out the linoleum in the kitchen and other spaces while we're at it. You know, to make it look a little more seamless and create a nice flow between the rooms.

In our last home we installed laminate flooring in the rooms that didn't have hardwood under the existing carpet--the living room/dining room and kitchen. We really liked having laminate and considered doing it again in this house.  But in the end we decided to go with engineered hardwood on the main floor. I'll share more about the basement floors later.  Why did we choose the engineered hardwood for upstairs? We worried that a laminate would look fake and not-so-classy next to the kitchen's solid oak cabinets and the oak banister in the entry. No, the cabinets and banister aren't my favorite, but I promised Hubby that I'd make them work--meaning no touching them with a paint brush, as I'm so apt to do. :)
My brother-in-law sent us two flooring samples from his distributor, Lon Muslof. As you can see, the top surface of the two is pretty much identical. 
We chose Maple because of its light color. I wanted to go as light as possible, keeping with the scandinavian look I so love. Kinda like this:

The real difference is revealed when you look at the side profile. The lower sample in the photo above is slightly thicker, has a slightly thicker layer of wood on the top and is installed more traditionally. The top sample in the photo above is the less expensive of the two--about $2 less per square foot. It has a slightly thinner top vanier but is easy to install--it simply snaps into place. Also, it's made in Norway (as I've mentioned before, I have more than just a soft spot for anything Norwegian.) To top it off, Nathan chose the hickory version of this flooring for his own home. What's good enough for a lumberyard owner is beyond good enough for us!

Here's the winning sample looking all beautiful next to our kitchen cabinets. Can you picture it?! So excited!!

And here's the sample next to the banister in the entry. It's also a little sneak peak of the priming and painting I've been doing. Hello mr. black wall. Don't worry, I'll share more photos of the painting soon!


  1. We have so much in common! I picked light wood floors, too, for our house because the carpets seriously set off my allergies. And my Hubby veto-ed painting our kitchen cabinets so I painstakingly stripped and revarnished them. I want to paint them so badly, but Hubby rarely pipes up, design-wise, so I don't want to steam roll over the one preference he has.

  2. I like uniformity in the flooring, and I like your clean lines and minimalist approach. This is going to be awesome!