Do you like scavenger hunts? How about when there is a big payoff? Based on the comments to a post earlier this week about remodeling budgets, I think most of you LOVE to hunt for cheaper versions of the fancy look! I know I do. Gives me shivers just thinking about it!
Try this one on for size…
This is one pretty floor! I found it on the website that sells it, and I have to say, it is beautiful. Based on what I read, this is one finely done floor. But if I were to guess, I’d guess it’s close to $20.00 per sf (possibly much more). So what if there is no way you can pay that. Watchu gonna do?
What about this look from the same company…
Nice. Nice. Nice. In fact, this whole room is kinda cool.
Wood is Trees
It seems like people forget sometimes that wood is a pretty basic material. If you’re willing to accept some imperfections, you can get wood for very low cost.
If I wanted this floor and couldn’t afford it, here is what I’d do:
- Take a picture to a local wood expert such as a specialty hardwood supplier. Hopefully, they’ll give you some respect, but if not get as much information as possible. What you really need to know is what species available locally would have similar grain and color.
- I’d try and get some samples to play with if I could and once I had one or two species narrowed down, I can just call around on the phone and get prices for the material. Unless I’m looking for a very rustic look (which is very popular), then I’ll want T&G (tounge and groove) wood. This interlocks together.
- If you really feel like a dope, call some places further away first so you can get the lingo down before calling the local places Just be careful about wasting someone’s time if you have no interest at all in buying from them…when I’m in that situation (just fishing for info) I come right out and tell them. Some help, some won’t.
- Once you know the lingo, you can get some great prices. Renting the tools to install the floor isn’t expensive and the job isn’t that hard to figure out. There are hundreds of refrences on-line. You can check some of the links at my Mr. How-To post for a place to start looking.
- I’d use some scraps to try out different finish methods until I got it right. Then go for it. If you’re going for a high-gloss finish you might want a professional. It’s not easy to get a clean high-gloss on a large area.
- You could start in a small home-office or powder room for practice if you don’t want to tackle a whole big floor at once.
Okay, I’ll admit, I’m over-simplifying the job a little. But it is just wood. You can do it if you want to. Even if you hire it out, you can get major savings by shopping around and being willing to look at a number of species. You’ll hear a whole lot about hardness…but it’s not that complex. You can take a sample and decide for yourself if it’s hard enough.
Anyway, just an idea along the lines of finding high-dollar inspiration and a low-dollar solution!
Any questions or comments are welcome!