In the recent past, hardwood flooring trends valued uniformity. The floor was prized if the planks were all the same size and if the grain closely matched the neighboring planks. Many people wanted their flooring to look like a seamless piece of wood. This is not at all how floors used to look, nor is it the current trend. The current trend in hardwood flooring has trended towards older styles that are often found in antique homes, even dating back to the 19th century. In those homes, as much of a tree as possible was used to make the flooring. Therefore, you would end up with flooring planks of different widths and lengths because the crafters were trying to utilize as much of the tree as possible.
In the early history of the United States and especially in low-income areas, the flooring was made from trees that were sourced locally. Therefore, the crafters were limited in the resources they could use to create the floor. That meant that they had to cut planks from every part of the tree, which led to planks that were different widths and lengths. Some were heartwood and most were sapwood; there was very little consistency. Now, that style of flooring has re-emerged as a trend.
Many people are choosing varied width flooring for their homes. Some are even using varied lengths of planks. There are several benefits to this. First, the floor looks great; it mirrors the classic look of antique homes. Also, it makes it much easier to find planks and to repair the floor.
Finding Floor Planks
If you’re looking for floor planks in a specific type of wood, specific finish, and specific size, you’re going to have very few options. That will lead to you spending more on your planks or having a much more difficult time finding the wood you need. Alternately, if you have a varied width and varied length floor, you can find just about any plank of the proper species of wood to repair your floor. You won’t be looking for wood that is a specific size; therefore, you’ll have far more options.
It will also be easier to source the original planks. Many companies offer surplus wood or damaged planks for a lowered price. However, that might not be a sufficient amount of wood to cover your floor. If you’re using planks of various widths and lengths, you can source discounted wood from a different supplier to get to the needed amount of wood.