Trendy Alternatives to Hardwood Flooring

Hardwood flooring is a classic American favorite, its popularity  predicted to have risen by at least 3% this year alone. The softness and natural,  earthy appeal of wooden floors seem to match almost any design style, but lately, a plethora of sturdier, fuss-free, more affordable alternatives are giving this material a run for its money. Indeed, many options offer a wood-like effect that make them virtually indistinguishable from the real thing. They don’t need to be refinished and, in the event of a need for replacement, your wallet won’t feel quite as big a pinch.
Wood Effect Floor Tiles
Ceramic and  porcelain tiles that look like wood are all the rage in modern homes, because they require very little maintenance and upkeep, yet boast the plank-like wooden effect that lends the  grace of the great outdoors to home interiors. Wood effect tiles come in a host of hues – everything from naturally aged hazel to cool silver or blue-tinged light wood. Ultra-modern homes with minimalistic furnishing and architectural features can benefit from artistically weathered, multi-hued wood effect tiles in aged grey, brown, and even black.
 
Laminate Wood Flooring
Laminate has become a popular choice for budget-conscious homeowners who don’t want to scrimp on style, owing to its easy installations, wide range of colors and finishes, and similar appearance to that of hardwood. From light Scandinavian looks to stark minimalistic white, laminate beams come in a wide range of looks to suit practically every home design, and many come in a ready-to-click-together design that makes them easy to set up by DIY or beginner designers. Keeping laminate flooring in tip-top condition is easy, since standard cleaning involves little more than a sweep and a mop.
Leather Flooring
Leather tiles for flooring and wall claddings add a luxurious feel to specific rooms, including dens, living rooms, and bedrooms. For this type of flooring, robust leather that is easy to clean and maintain is used. Leather boasts a natural warmth and inviting aesthetic, and it is also highly versatile, coming in a wide range of colors, sizes, and even prints. The material is also durable and it helps enhance a room’s acoustics, making it an excellent choice for a cinema room or any space in which optimal sound quality is key. Because it is less stain-resistant than hard materials, this material should be kept away from kitchens and other messier areas of the home or workplace. As is the case with marble and other sturdier flooring, leather floors can be mopped, though specific materials such as leather fat or oil are sometimes recommended.
Bamboo Flooring
Technically a grass rather than wood, this material is ultra-friendly but also eco-friendly, making it an ideal choice for those who wish to live in beautiful interiors while  lowering their carbon footprint. For a super hard option, go for uncarbonized bamboo, which is as sturdy as red oak. Bamboo floors come in a wide range of lengths, widths and colors. From wide elegant grey slabs to narrow rows of light-colored bamboo, there are various choices to suit different designs and tastes. You can even opt for a tile or hexagonal print looks if you like foregoing the ‘wood look’ altogether in favor of something a little more artistic.
Hardwood may still be a popular choice for homeowners seeking durable, reliable flooring, but the plethora of newer, more sustainable alternatives are certainly giving this material a run for its money. From ready-to-click laminate flooring to elegant leather, there is something for every ambience and price range. Choices also vary depending on whether natural or futuristic looks are your thing. In the case of flooring, art doesn’t necessarily have to imitate nature. Rather, it can determine its own rules in color, texture, and style
cover photo via unsplash

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