White flooring feels fresh, clean and modern as well as making small spaces feel bigger. It also provides a neutral backdrop if you’re thinking of adding bright colours to walls or showing off your artwork. Pretty much every Scandi blog you look is adorned with images of beautiful things… in a room with a white floor.
Being white and minimal doesn’t need to be clinical and stark – there are loads of materials and textures to choose from. Personally, I would avoid white laminate or white vinyl as it can look too plastic and unnatural.
White floor paint
Painting wooden floors white can give your existing floor a quick and cheap facelift. Most period properties have pine plank flooring hidden beneath the existing flooring (It’s likely you will need to pull up the plywood or chipboard substrate too).
There are plenty of wood floor paints on the market, however I would only really recommend them if you want a ‘shabby-chic’ look. The paint sits on the surface so will be prone to chipping and cracking over time. It will also mask the natural grain and texture of the timber floor, which I think is a bit of a shame. However, this image from Farrow and Ball makes a good case for it – this image shows floor paint in Wimbourne White.
White washed timber floor
The other option is to go for a white washed wooden floor. Instead of using paint, a oil with white pigment will soak into the newly sanded pine to give a more natural and longer lasting finish. You’ll need to use a course brush to rub it in. Pine flooring is naturally quite yellow and applying a natural oil can sometimes bring this out even more, so be careful which oil you choose. Osmo has an excellent range of white floor oils but I’d strongly recommend one with a high pigment content, as opposed to one with a ‘tint’. After lots of experimentation with my own living room floor, I went with ‘Osmo Wood Wax Finish Creativ Snow – 3188‘. You can definitely still see the grain but the yellow colour of the pine is no more! It only needed one coat.
White cork floor
Cork flooring can be a great – more natural – alternative to white vinyl or lino (it’s so cheap too!). You can buy white cork flooring or, to make it look really white, use an Osmo oil on natural cork. The image below is of ‘Classic White – Snow‘ from corkfloor.co.uk
White concrete flooring
Painting a concrete floor white gives a cool, hard, modernist look. But if you don’t happen to have a concrete floor in your house, you might consider concrete floor tiles. Concreate is a company i’ve recently come across and make tongue and groove poured concrete tiles in a number of colours including white. I love the natural variations in colour between the tiles that is much more striking that going for white porcelain or ceramic!
White bamboo flooring
The naturally tight and linear grain of bamboo looks great in white. The natural repetition gives uniformity but still has interest. I think it looks even better hand-scraped! The hand-scraped white bamboo flooring below is from www.bambooindustry.com
White resin flooring
For a really white sleek, glossy, flawless finish it has to be a poured white resin floor. The image below shows a poured resin from PUUR – mono in white. A more expensive option than the white floors above… you pay for perfection! It can also be used externally.
More interior inspiration next week…
Emily Design for Me