10.08.2017

Interiors obsession - Parquet flooring

Interior Design Trend - Parquet Flooring 


Okay for my first interiors obsession feature I have to gush about parquet flooring. Something I've been pretty passionate about since as long as I can remember if you can picture a six-year-old getting excited about flooring that would be me. I mean I love it, I moved into a totally unsuitable rental with three of the most mental people I've ever met purely because I couldn't see past the parquet. Not all bad came of living with lunatics though, the day before my interview for my current job two of the housemates from hell decided to have a physical fight with each other. The lady who lived above us walked in through the wide-open front door, to find me in the middle of them sending them to their rooms like naughty school children and apologising for the noise. This woman turned out to be the recruiter interviewing the next day and was rather impressed at my ability to hold my own in a crisis, even if I was in Harry Potter pyjamas....





Why do I love this kind of flooring so much, well its just beautiful isn't it?

Parquet is a mosaic of wood used for decorative effect in flooring. To me parquet flooring evokes all the sentiments of traditional aristocratic homes and old-fashioned libraries, the smell of a wooden floor transports me back to my childhood. 



What kinds of Parquet flooring are there?

There are actually many types of Parquet flooring from the every popular Herringbone to intricate Parquet D’Aremberg which gets its name from the castle in Belgium it originates, popularised by Queen Marie de Medici of France this style is often called a French style Parquet. A great website for exploring all the various styles of Parquet is Parquet-verssailles.co.uk . As Parquet flooring has been knocking around since at least the 1600's there are many variations and styles. While traditionally made of wood tiles can also be used as an alternative for a differentent look. 

How is a Parquet floor made?

It takes many years of practice and skill to make a Parquet floor. From precise measuring to meticulous laying a parquet floor is a truly artistic endeavour that even the most skilled craftsmen treat with respect. This is not a job you want to DIY and the cost reflects the skill of the layer and the sheer time it takes to do properly.




All types of wood can be used for parquet flooring though most often it is made from oak or similar hardwoods. On average an engineered parquet floor costs £75 per square m but the installation costs can be prohibitive as usually takes multiple days to install even a small room. To help keep costs down you can use reclaimed floors, often found at reclamation yards but this can be a bit of a red herring (*bone* ha!) as using reclaimed parquet boards can be warped or damaged during removal which certainly adds to the installation and final look of the install. A bespoke parquet floor can be upwards of £100 per square m so is a real commitment.  Another alternative is laminate designed to look like Parquet, which while not as visually pleasing is a lot more affordable. 

laminate that is cheaper than hardwood
Image source B&Q

How to use Parquet Flooring in a modern home?

Parquet flooring is best used as the main feature in the room, so minimal styling is what I'd recommend. This gorgeous corner sofa from Darlings of Chelsea looks so effortlessly chic against the pale parquet flooring below. With a nod to classic styling, it sits well with the heritage of parquet flooring but doesn't feel old-fashioned, when styled with a masculine industrial coffee table this living room is the perfect example of how modern parquet can be. 

 Modern Parquet Flooring

For the perfect formal space a Parquet flooring is one of the best ways to make a space feel much more elegant. Foyers or living rooms are the ideal location for parquet whereas smaller spaces such as studies or bedrooms can be overwhelmed with the eye-catching patterns.  For this reason it is also important to keep rooms with parquet flooring uncluttered and rug free, it is best suited to light bright rooms.
Image source Building Supplies Online

How to maintain a parquet floor?

Like all hardwood floors parquet is actually fairly low maintenance, if varnished a vacuum one a week (depending on footfall) and mopping with a well-wrung mop once a fortnight is sufficient to keep the space looking clean and fresh. Be careful not to use too much water as this can damage the wood if it becomes saturated. If the wood is unvarnished then avoid using a wet mop, it's better to spritz use a spray bottle with three parts water and one part white vinegar then dry mopping this off the surface of the wood.  It is also advisable to oil the wood around once every six months to prevent cracking. All wood dries as it ages and regular oiling keeps the wood moist.  Never use harsh chemical cleaners of parquet flooring as this can strip the varnish and natural finish from the wood, as well as cause irreparable damage to the wood by drying it out. If the flooring is very old or loosing its lustre speak to a proffesional as it may need resealing. 


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