Sustainable Wood Flooring
As we approach the kitchen reveal, I am going to be sharing various elements with you over the next few weeks. While Cabinets to Go and my contractor helped me with the layout of our renovation, I created the aesthetic design myself, and many hours and planning went into each decision. (You can ask one of my best friends who I obsessively texted over every choice! Hi, Angelique!) Because I poured so much thought into it, I want to share each choice with you along with my reasoning behind it. I’ve always been a person who likes to analyze parts of a whole to understand why they work on their own and how they work together towards the final goal. I truly hope that you will enjoy going through this process with me, and that it will also get you excited about the final reveal! Last week, I showed you our Cabinets to Go cabinetry, and shared the details of all they offer. What I didn’t mention, and something I wasn’t aware of until last spring, is that Cabinets to Go also offers fabulous flooring options. When I approached them about working together, they asked me if I’d be interested in using their flooring as well. I took a look at what was available on their website, and was thrilled to see sustainable hardwood flooring! Today I am going to show you our Cabinets to Go sustainable wood kitchen flooring as well as talk about a decision that was a tough one to make but felt right for me. (Thank you to Cabinets to Go for providing me with the flooring and cabinetry seen in this post. I was not otherwise compensated and all opinions are my own.)
(As you can see, our wood flooring flows into our entry)
When we decided to renovate the kitchen, keeping the existing flooring was not an option. It was a cheap vinyl tile that was poorly laid down. Underneath it was old (as in original 1966) linoleum in the kitchen and parquet in the entry that was too ruined to be saved. We truly wanted to use wood flooring because we love the look and feel of it, the organic warmth it brings to a space, the low maintenance of it, and how well it holds up to dogs nails (as opposed to the vinyl tile you can see has dog nail scratches in the above photo.) With the white cabinets and terrazzo countertops that will soon be in place, wood flooring was the perfect element to bring in that natural vibe I want throughout my home. I was thrilled that Cabinets to Go offered wood flooring options, one of which is Talon hardwood flooring which is eco-friendly and comes from responsibly maintained forests. As with many design elements, it’s truly important to be able to see them in person and take home samples before making any major decisions. When we visited our Charlotte showroom to see the cabinetry in person, we also checked out the flooring and were able to take home a few samples to see which would work best for us.
As you can see, the existing original hardwood floors in our 1966 rancher are solid oak with planks that are each just a few inches wide. To be fair, they aren’t in terrible shape, but they could stand to be refinished. However, that just isn’t in the budget at the moment.
The new flooring was going to be in spaces adjacent to our old hardwoods and we needed something that would create somewhat of a flow. We laid down our samples and compared them to our existing flooring. After looking at a few samples, we selected a red oak which is the same kind of wood we have. Of course, when they are brand new, the wood is much lighter, but over time it will catch up to the color of our original floors. The Talon planks are also much wider across than our old flooring, and I actually really prefer their width.
I don’t want to give too much away yet, but here’s a look at how they look in our entry leading into our kitchen. This photo, of course, is from when the zipper door was still there, but you get the idea. Isn’t there such a difference in the warmth of the space compared to the photo above with the old dark flooring? Natural hardwoods are just a beautiful thing! They’ve truly transformed the space and made it so much brighter and happier already!
Now I want to talk to you about where I had to make a hard decision. Our kitchen was already somewhat open to our dining room, but we’ve knocked down the wall between the spaces completely, opening it up even more. Since the new hardwoods do not match the old hardwoods in plank size, weaving them into the old hardwoods was not an option. As I mentioned, I am fortunate to be partnering with Cabinets to Go on this renovation, so I could have chosen to replace the flooring in the dining room as well so that I would have one huge cohesive space and the flooring would all be exactly the same. I am 100% certain that many people would have made that decision. (Pardon all the boxes- our hood and some other kitchen stuff is all piled up for our contractor).
As you can see, I did not make that decision. I’ve talked a lot this year about how I am trying to be a much more ethically conscious consumer, and I carry that throughout every brand partnership I take on as well. I could not, in my right mind, rip out the original hardwood floors that were in good enough shape just so that this space would be a little prettier. I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. Over time, these lighter newer floors will start to catch up in color to the older ones, but that difference does not bug me nearly as much as it would have eaten away at me to be so wasteful of perfectly good floors.
We’ve simply added an oak transition which will get stained when I stain our shelves. And you know what? I am thrilled and I actually quite love the character of seeing the original next to the new. As you can see, the wood grain is very similar since they are all red oak.
I could have also altered this wall so that everything was pushed over to the other side of the transition, but I wanted this layout exactly as it is for functionality which is more important than aesthetics in design.
I recently shared all about our flooring and my reasoning for this transition, and for not replacing our dining room floors on my instagram stories. I had a follower reply that it was a bit hypocritical because here we had just ripped out everything else in our kitchen. Yes, that is true, but most of that was to be salvaged. As you may recall, when we moved in the wall oven was 24″ and in no way would work for a family of 5 who enjoys cooking at home. In order to replace the oven, we had to rework the cabinetry which meant the old could not be reused here. Our contractor asked if he could take it to use in one of his kid’s kitchen. YES! Of course! I also gave him the appliances to reuse in other jobs or in his kids’ kitchen as well. I am sorry to report that the old flooring was not saved, but it was so poorly done and low quality that we just couldn’t live with it long term. We can, however, live with beautiful sustainable hardwood flooring long term! Anyhow, I wanted to share all of that with you today because I know that many out there would not have made the same decisions as me, but I truly believe that I made the best choice for our family and for our environment and that matters to me. I am proud of the choice that I made, and excited that we now have sustainable and original hardwood flooring in our home.
The best part about all of this wood flooring throughout such an open space, aside from all of the practical reasons that I’ve given you today, is that we now have an epic kitchen dance floor! Thanks to Alexa’s 90’s One Hit Wonders station, Wilder has become a big fan of “Ice Ice, Baby.” He also has a signature move we all lovingly dub, “The Wilder.” We are looking forward to many years of family kitchen dance parties on these floors! A huge thank you, again, to Cabinets to Go for providing us with our new
dance kitchen floor. Head over to their website to check out all of the amazing deals they currently have going on! There is still time to renovate your kitchen and have the kitchen of your dreams for the upcoming holiday season.