Advice Wanted: Wood Floor Stain
In a couple of weeks, we will be getting the hardwood floors in our new house finished. We had planned to wait for a while before doing this, but all the paint spots (from the previous owners!) and stains made the floors look constantly dirty. Also, we realized that completely moving in requires A LOT of unpacking and organizing, etc, etc and that when you get your floors redone you need to move everything back out! We immediately reversed our packing before it was too late.
After the floors are sanded down, we have to choose a stain for them. And here’s where I want your input – what should we do? I am inclined to stick as close to the original color as possible. I like to honor things like that and I enjoy the warmth of this shade. The rather classic color would withstand the test of time, I hope. The only thing that’s making me second guess myself is the fact that I don’t think I would ever choose this shade if I were doing new construction.
The floors pictured above are in the bedroom and are in the best condition of all the floors in the house. They are the best representation of what I would hope the floors would look like if we keep them the same stain. What do you think? Here are a couple other options that I think I might normally prefer, but I’m not sure if I do in this case.
We could go a bit darker like the floors above. I like the rich undertones in these floors. I get a bit nervous that if floors in this shade aren’t done right, they look cheap, flat, and monotone. Does that make any sense? I want to be sure that the different shades of the different boards still show through at this level of stain.
Or we could go reallllly dark. I love the floors above. They look so glamorous and chic! The contrast with the white walls is fantastic. Two problems with these floors come to mind. First of all, is the dark floors thing a trend? Would I still like these floors as much in 5 years? Second, everyone says dark floors are a pain in the you-know-what to keep clean. They show all the dirt and dust and crumbs. And, in case you’ve already forgotten, part of the reason we’re getting our floors refinished is because the spots on them are driving me nuts. They always look dirty. Perhaps super dark floors aren’t a good match for a girl who’s a bit obsessive about her cleaning?
Maybe we could go light? I love light, Scandinavian inspired floors. The ones above are in Kevin Sharkey’s home and were originally quite dark. After numerous coats of bleach and stain they ended up like this. If you click on the picture you can see the “before.” Again – are the classic enough? Do they fit with the style of our craftsman bungalow? Does it matter? Would it cost a lot more to do this? It seems significantly more labor intensive that just staining. Also, I’d be worried that the old stains on our floor would never lighten as much as the rest of the wood.
What do you think? Which shade would you choose/did you choose for your house? Any advice on colors that stand up to the test of time? That work well for neat freaks?