A fun and informative guide to make the best, most educated decision possible when it comes to selecting your hardwood floor, and essentially not screwing up a multi-thousand dollar purchase. You're welcome.
Few things can affect the overall look and feel of your space more than the flooring, but we know that selecting and purchasing flooring can also be pretty stressful. Flooring is a long-term decision that is not easy to change; like a really expensive tattoo for your house. It’s not something you want to choose hastily, or the sort of thing you want to do on the cheap lest you pay in the long run.
The Internet is full of terrible advice, although not always intentionally. Factors like climate and lifestyle can dramatically affect the type of flooring that will work best in your home, so a floor that worked great in Cambridge, MA might going to perform the same way in Scottsdale, AZ. This makes advice, as well as flooring reviews, even more difficult to trust.
Fortunately, at Revel Woods we are hardwood flooring experts, and we focused on creating the best system to guide you to the floor of your dreams (dreaming about flooring is totally normal right? It’s not just us… right?).
Here’s the best, stress-free way to find the perfect floor for you.
Things you’ll need:
- A free Revel Woods Account
- One (or more) Revel Woods Sample Box(es)
- A small to medium size bowl of M&Ms (or bite size chocolate of your choice)
Step 1: Visit revelwoods.com and go through our super-fun flooring quiz.
We have been in the hardwood flooring industry our entire lives. If we’re not experts, then such experts don’t exist. When we worked with clients in person we had a great way of narrowing down the millions of flooring choices to a select few that were perfect for each client’s specific space and needs. We spent years developing a system that would give people the exact same boutique experience on the web. Before Revel Woods, this sort of online experience didn’t exist (although we suspect we’ll see some copycats now).
Step 2: Create a free Revel Woods account.
Once you have the results for your space, life gets easier if you create an account (and who wouldn’t want an easier life?). All you need is an email address. From there you can save floors to your favorite list for easy comparison, as well as save your results if you want to leave and come back later without having to start over.
Step 3: Eat some M&Ms.
If you’ve resisted the M&M’s so far, go ahead and treat yourself. If you’ve already eaten the whole bowl (no judging), make sure you’ve completed Step 2, so you can use this time to go get more M&Ms.
Step 4: Play Around with your results.
With your account and space created, you are ready to look at some great pictures of flooring. Take your time, play around with the filters, look at some of the different design aesthetics. A lot of times the thing you thought you were looking for might not be the thing you’re going to love the most. Trust us on this one. Also, M&Ms make this process more fun.
Step 5: Order a sample box.
Now things start to get interesting, once you have a pretty good idea of what you’re looking for, you are ready for the next step: ordering samples. We spent a lot of time rethinking how sampling should be done for hardwood flooring, and what we’ve come up with is a system that is both informative and portable. One sample box is $10, and that crisp Hamilton gets you not one, but four samples. Keep in mind, you don’t need to order four different floors, you can mix and match any way you want: 1-1-1-1, 2-2, 3-1, 2-1-1, whatever you need to be successful.
The more samples you order of a floor the more of that floor you are going to receive and see (I know that sounds obvious, but it’s important. Just humor me, OK?).
Step 6: More M&Ms.
You have a little time while you wait for your samples to arrive (we ship them out within one business day of getting the order so it won’t be that long). Why not use that time wisely and go buy some more M&Ms? Maybe try some different kinds. You’re about to dramatically improve your home, now is the time to expand your horizons!
Step 7: Back to the site.
By this step, your samples have arrived. Once you’re done swooning over how well they are presented, it’s time to see them in your space. Circumstances like lighting, viewing angle, and time of day can affect the way the wood looks, so be sure to put your samples in as many situations and locations in your homes or space as possible.
This next part is crucial. Samples are great for showing you color, sheen, and texture, but there is one more thing you need to get a true picture of what your floor is going to look like: variation. Variation refers to the character in the wood; knots, streaks, grain pattern, etc. You know, the thing that makes wood look like wood. You need to go back to the site and compare your samples to the pictures. This should give you the best idea of the types of character you will expect to see across a larger section of flooring
An example of how your sample can fit into an entire room. There’s a lot a sample can’t show you on its own
Bottom line: you will never be able to see every possible type of character in a small sample, because that is not how trees work. The samples and pictures were designed from the ground up to work together as a system.
Step 8: Time To Order!
This is it, now is your moment to shine! You’ve found your floor and are ready to order. On the product page we include a handy square footage calculator that will figure out how much waste material you need (you ALWAYS want to have a little extra material).
Having some material left over at the end of the job for potential repairs down the line is a sign you measured correctly.
Step 9: The Hard Part.
While you wait for your new floor to arrive, take this opportunity to sharpen up your dinner party skills; you’re going to need them when you invite everybody over to show off your new space. You don’t want your space to completely outshine you as a host, now do you? We find that brushing up on the features of domestic hardwood species is always a hit at parties.
Step 10: Finish the M&Ms.
You’ve earned it.
*(OK fine, the last two steps are filler, but lists of 10 sound so much better than lists of eight. And honestly, who couldn’t benefit from a little dinner party prep?)