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Give your kitchen an instant makeover with vinyl flooring

If your kitchen is looking a little tired and you want to revamp it without committing too much time or money, vinyl flooring might just be the answer. Vinyl flooring is huge right now – just take a look through any interior or home magazines and you will see how far it has come since the 70s and 80s. It is available in a huge variety of designs, colours and finishes and is the perfect match for a kitchen, as it stands up well to moisture, spills and heavy foot traffic. Here are some on-trend ideas to think about for your own kitchen.

Geometric patterns

Geometric patterned vinyl flooring works particularly well in smaller spaces. Adding a statement floor is the perfect way to add interest and drama in a small room and you will find plenty of stunning designs from which to choose. Opt for something in a dark grey for a sleek, modern finish or something more colourful if you want to add an element of fun to your kitchen. As kitchens tend to be fairly plainly decorated – with plain units and worktops – adding a heavily patterned floor works very well and won’t clash with other patterns.

Tile effect

If you love the look of real tiles but don’t want to splash out the money this entails or are worried that tiles will be too cold underfoot in the winter months, it is possible to get vinyl flooring that is indistinguishable from the real thing. You will find hundreds of different designs and shades, making it easy to find your perfect match. Vinyl is not only cheaper than real tiles but also far easier to install. Vinyl flooring is cushioned meaning crockery is less likely to smash if accidentally dropped.

Monochrome

One of the most popular vinyl designs for many years has been the classic black and white tiled finish. This complements just about any kitchen decor and is a timeless look. You can achieve this look by using individual tiles or by choosing sheet vinyl flooring. If you love the monochrome look but want something more fun, you will find an array of striking designs in black and white. As a rule of thumb, more intricate patterns tend to work better in smaller spaces while larger, bolder patterns make an impact on larger floor areas. Having said that, sometimes rules are made to be broken and you can achieve a stunning finish by choosing something a little different to the expected.

Posted on by Paul Smith | Posted in Vinyl Flooring

Tips for upcycling your carpet offcuts

As we become more and more aware of the impact of our throw-away culture on the environment, most of us are trying to limit the amount of waste we create and do our bit for the future of the planet. If you have ever had a carpet fitted in your home, no doubt you will have been left with a pile of offcuts and no idea what to do with them. Many such offcuts end up as landfill, but there are lots of ways in which you can use them and give them a new purpose.

Create a doormat

This is an easy hack and one that even someone with no DIY experience can do. You will need to cut the carpet to the right shape and size first, which you can do with a carpet knife and something to guide your cuts so that they are straight. Once you have cut the carpet, you will need some adhesive binding to stop it fraying. Cut this to length, fold it over the edges of the carpet and you have made a simple yet attractive doormat! You can use exactly the same technique to create a runner for a hallway or any other long, narrow space.

Make floor protectors for your furniture

If you are worried about chair or table legs scratching wooden, laminate or vinyl flooring, cut small pieces of carpet and stick them to the bottom of your furniture.

Make a cat scratcher

If you have cats in your home, you will probably know how much they love to scratch carpets, furniture, and anything else they can get their paws on. By making a scratcher, you encourage your cats to practise their natural instincts but leave your furniture alone. Use heavy-duty glue to stick carpet offcuts onto a wooden board and attach it to the wall, or wrap carpet around a post to create a homemade scratching post.

Use it for insulation

Do you have a boarded-out loft or a concrete floor garage that feels extra chilly for most of the year? Use large offcuts to add a bit of warmth in these areas.

Keep it for repairs

Finally, it is always worth holding back some spare carpet to use in the event of damage to your main carpet. Depending on the size of the damaged area and the type of carpet, it is often possible to replace stained or worn patches with a carefully cut piece from an offcut.

Posted on by Paul Smith | Posted in Carpets

Choosing the right carpet for your home

It can be confusing to wade through all the different types of carpet available. All the talk of fibres and weaves can seem daunting, but this simple guide will outline what you should think about when selecting a new carpet.

Underfoot feel

Different types of carpet feel very different underfoot. Have you ever stayed at a friend’s house and been blown away by the soft, enveloping feel of their carpet under your bare feet? If so, they probably had something like a Saxony carpet. If you are carpeting a bedroom and want a luxurious, comforting feel underfoot, you will need to opt for something with a deep pile; however, if you are carpeting a busy hallway, you might want something flatter and firmer, such as a loop pile carpet. You should also bear in mind any household pets. Cats and dogs can get their claws stuck in the long pile of some carpets, so something more practical might be the best choice.

Durability

If you are carpeting a stairway or busy family room, durability is likely to be topmost in your mind. Luxurious, deep pile carpets might look pretty but they are unlikely to be practical in busier rooms of the home. Twist carpets are great for busy thoroughfares and have the ability to bounce back to their original shape after being walked on. For a good all-rounder, take a look at loop pile carpets. These work well in most rooms and are available in a huge range of colours and designs. Many carpets can be treated with special formulas to make them more stain-resistant.

Fibre

Wool carpets are the ultimate in luxury and softness, but you might not want to splash out on wool for busier rooms that are likely to experience a lot of spills and wear and tear. There are plenty of synthetic fibre carpets on the market in a wide range of prices – not to mention that these are great for anyone who avoids wool for ethical reasons. If you want something stain-resistant, consider polypropylene, which is extremely easy to clean and highly family-friendly. Nylon carpets are also a great option for busy homes. Nylon does not mark as easily as wool, meaning it is perfect for rooms in which you want to move furniture around regularly. You can find nylon carpets in a huge array of contemporary designs, making this a great choice for modern homes.

Posted on by Paul Smith | Posted in Carpets

How to dry a wet carpet

Whether the result of external flooding, a burst pipe or another incident, having a wet carpet can be a stressful experience. It is vital that you get to work as soon as possible to prevent further damage. A wet carpet can cause damage to walls, sub-flooring and furniture and be a breeding ground for mould. In the worst cases, particularly if external flooding is involved, you will need to rip out the carpet and replace it once the property is dry. Luckily, as long as the damage is not too severe, you should be able to remedy the situation yourself without too much expense or hassle. Here are some tips to help you get the situation under control quickly.

Clear the affected room

The first thing to do is to move everything away from the area of the wet carpet. Place all your furniture in a dry place away from the wet carpet to prevent damage.

Start removing the water

Depending on the amount of water, it might be possible to remove most of it with dry towels. Lay towels over the affected area and walk over them to help them absorb as much water as possible. Wring out the towels when they are soaked through and keep going until you have removed as much water as possible. For larger areas, a vacuum that can suck up water is a good option. You should be able to rent one fairly easily if your vacuum is not able to suck up water.

Another option to help you soak up the water is diatomaceous earth. While this is safe for humans and pets, it can be a little messy and you will need to vacuum it up once it is no longer absorbing water. You can move it around the floor with a broom to ensure it collects water from as much of the carpet as possible.

Begin the drying process

Use a fan to circulate air and help your carpets to dry out more quickly. Dehumidifiers can also help to speed up the process. It is important to ensure the room is ventilated to help dry out the carpet and prevent mould from forming in the humid conditions. If possible, leave the windows open for a few days after the flooding incident to ensure the air continues to circulate. Many DIY stores will have products you can sprinkle over the carpet when it is almost dry to help prevent mould from forming.

Posted on by Paul Smith | Posted in Carpets

Why vinyl makes the perfect summerhouse flooring

If your summerhouse needs a makeover this year, you might be thinking about replacing the flooring. Here are a few reasons why vinyl is a top choice for your summerhouse.

Budget-friendly

Your summerhouse flooring needs to be able to withstand a lot of adverse conditions – from icy cold winters to blazing hot summers – and the constant traipsing in of mud, dirt and debris. As a result, you might be unwilling to push the boat out when it comes to your budget. Vinyl flooring is one of the most affordable options for your summerhouse, meaning you won’t freeze in horror every time someone walks across it with muddy shoes.

Huge array of designs

No matter whether you prefer wood, tile or something in a fun geometric pattern, you will find your perfect match in our range of vinyl flooring. Modern vinyl flooring is available in just about every colour, finish and design under the sun. Opt for a classic wood effect if you want a traditional feel in your summerhouse or a realistic tile design for something more luxurious. If you like to put your own stamp on your summerhouse decor, you might want to choose a striking monochromatic pattern floor covering or something bright and colourful. The possibilities are endless when it comes to vinyl flooring.

Easy to clean

Vinyl is a great choice for any space that is subject to a lot of dirt or moisture. It is virtually stain- and water-resistant and could not be easier to clean. You can use many methods to clean vinyl flooring – mop, vacuum, broom, cloth – making it the perfect choice for a summerhouse. Sweep debris off with a stiff broom, soak up spills with a soft mop and buff your vinyl to a sparkling finish with a cloth. Vinyl is the ultimate in versatile and low-maintenance summerhouse flooring.

Simple to install

Most homeowners with even minimal DIY skills will be able to lay vinyl flooring. Whether you need new underlay will depend on the existing flooring and any underlay already in place. If you are not sure how to go about laying vinyl flooring in your summerhouse, our friendly and helpful staff will be able to advise you. It is also a good idea to check with the manufacturer of your preferred vinyl flooring to make sure it is suitable for your requirements before you buy.

Posted on by Paul Smith | Posted in Vinyl Flooring

Choosing your laminate flooring colour

Laminate flooring comes in such a wide array of colours, finishes and styles that it can be hard to narrow down the selection. Here is a quick guide to help you choose which colour is best for your home.

The colour wheel

A quick online search will bring up hundreds of examples of the colour wheel used by designers and artists to select complementary colours. If you are replacing your flooring but other furnishings – such as your sofa and rug – are staying the same, this is a great way to ensure you won’t get an ugly clash of shades. It is also handy if you want your new flooring to sit well with the existing wall colour.

When using the colour wheel, you have a few choices. You can use colours that are neighbours on the colour wheel, such as brown and rust, or colours that are opposites (contrasts), such as brown and blue. There are obviously hundreds of other examples; however, as laminate flooring tends to most often be supplied in shades of browns and closely related colours, these are the most relevant in this case. If you have a teal sofa, for example, and want a pleasing contrast between your floor and your furniture, you will find a warm brown is opposite teal on the colour wheel and will work very well as a floor colour. If you have a rust coloured rug, flooring with blue undertones will provide a similarly attractive contrast.

Dark or light flooring?

Darker laminates, usually sold as walnut style or similar, tend to be cool shades and work well with other cool colours; for example, cool, light blue walls will work well with this type of flooring, as would cool mint green walls. If you want a contemporary finish, try teaming cool, darker laminate flooring with pops of a contrasting colour, such as bright orange or yellow.

If you prefer to opt for lighter flooring, perhaps to try to open up a dark space without much natural light, you will probably find that this flooring also tends to have cool undertones. Stick to other cool shades but feel free to team this flooring with light or dark furnishings and furniture; for example, a dark, cool grey sofa would work well here. Cool walls in the purple family – such as lilacs – look great paired with cool, light laminate floors.

Posted on by Paul Smith | Posted in Laminate Flooring

Choosing the perfect stair carpet for your home

The stairs feel the full force of your household’s traffic; therefore, choosing the right carpet is essential if you don’t want signs of wear and tear to show after just a few months. It is also important to bear in mind the flooring at the top and bottom of the stairs – will you replace all the carpet with the same design or do you need two different floor coverings to work together?

Here are some tips to help you choose the best carpet for your stairs.

Plain or patterned?

While plain carpet is by far the most popular these days, it can make more sense to lay a patterned carpet on the stairs. Patterned carpets help to disguise dirt and wear and tear far better than plain carpet and can be a great option if you have small children or pets. Stripes work particularly well running up the stairs. If you don’t plan to run the same carpet through your hallway – perhaps you have wooden or laminate flooring there – patterned carpet laid on the stairs looks very contemporary alongside wood or wood-effect flooring. The chances are that you will want to run with the same carpet up the stairs and onto the landing, so think about how your chosen colour or pattern will work upstairs in addition to on the stairs themselves.

Choose heavy-duty

You will only want to consider heavy-duty carpets for your stairs. These will usually be labelled as being suitable for stairs and might also come under the banner of heavy domestic. Thinner carpets are generally no good for stairs, as the constant heavy foot traffic wears through them in no time, particularly at the centre of each stair where most footsteps will land. You won’t want a deep, luxurious pile carpet on your stairs; however, you will want something with a little cushioning. This helps to muffle the sound of family members or pets running up and down the stairs and will help to cushion your fall in the event of a slip.

Don’t scrimp on the underlay

Decent underlay makes all the difference, especially when it comes to stairs. The right underlay can elevate any carpet, so this is not the area to scrimp. Speak to our friendly team if you need any advice on the best underlay for your stairs carpet.

Pay for professional fitting

Finally, laying stair carpet is best left to the professionals unless you are certain that you know exactly what you are doing.

Posted on by Paul Smith | Posted in Carpets

2019 carpet trends

While many homeowners have replaced carpets with wood, laminate or tiles over the last 20 or so years, others have stuck with their beloved carpet throughout and wouldn’t dream of having anything else underfoot. Whether you are a lifelong devotee of the carpeted floor or you are looking to replace some of your other flooring with carpet, here are the top trends for 2019.

Short pile carpets

It might not feel as dense and luxurious underfoot as deeper pile carpets, but short pile flooring is easier to maintain, making it perfect for busy family homes. It also has the advantage of not showing marks left by furniture to the extent that longer piles can. It is far easier to keep clean, meaning less work for you. Short pile carpets are more suitable for homes with pets, as there is less chance of long claws getting stuck in the fibres or dirty paws traipsing dirt deep into the carpet. Shorter piles are also a better option for allergy sufferers.

Multi-coloured designs

Solid coloured carpets still have their place, of course, but statement carpets are having currently making a splash in the world of interiors. Carpets featuring a variety of colours add life and personality to any space and are a great way to brighten up a dull room. One added bonus of multi-coloured carpets is that they are great for disguising dirt and stains, whereas single colour carpets are less effective.

Jute

Jute – and any other fibres that have a natural, low-key appearance – have been doing the rounds for a while and the trend is set to continue for some time yet. In addition to the obvious aesthetic appeal of jute, it is great for allergy sufferers, as it does not trap dust, pollen and other allergens in the same way as carpet. It also looks fantastic in most areas of the home and creates a very modern finish. If you are not sure about a whole jute floor, you might want to start with a jute rug to get the effect on a smaller scale.

Large rugs

With the rise in open-plan living, rugs are getting bigger than ever before. People who have struggled to find rugs large enough to fill their most spacious floors will have much more choice in 2019 as designers, manufacturers and retailers start to focus on catering to rooms of all shapes and sizes.

Posted on by Paul Smith | Posted in Carpets

Bathroom flooring trends for 2019

Often the smallest room in the home, the bathroom can carry much more interesting flooring choices than other rooms. Here are some of the top bathroom flooring trends for 2019 to inspire you when redecorating.

Wood/wood effect

Many homeowners now favour laminate flooring in the bathroom because it blends seamlessly with other rooms in the home. This trend is showing no sign of fading and is set to continue well into 2019 and beyond. Laminate is a great flooring option for bathrooms – just make sure you choose one that can handle the high levels of humidity and moisture involved. You might have to be prepared to mop up any spills or pools of water as they occur, but you are probably already doing this anyway! Laminate is available in so many colours and shades and finishes that it is easy to find the perfect match for the rest of your bathroom’s decor. From bleached pine effect to decadent dark oak, wood effect flooring is a classy and timeless choice.

Geometric patterned vinyl

Think bold primary colours and graphical design. Vinyl is the ultimate in versatile flooring and lends itself perfectly to one of this year’s biggest interior trends. The bathroom is the ideal space in which to get adventurous with your flooring, so feel free to really go to town here. Pair bright, colourful vinyl flooring with white walls and tiles and add a splash more colour with vibrant towels and accessories for a fun, modern look.

Bronze tones

Whether you prefer vinyl or tiles, bronze and similar shades are set to big news this year. These colours go perfectly with natural tones in the bathrooms and add warmth to the room. You can add bronze accents throughout the room to complement your bronze floor by hunting down bronze-coloured fixtures and accessories. Blush and dusky pinks are also set to be popular colour choices this year and will have a similar warming effect to bronze.

Black flooring

It might not be for the faint-hearted, but the black bathroom is a big trend for 2019. Think black tiles, black marble sinks and black flooring. This is a bold look that creates a high-end, luxurious feel in any bathroom. It certainly won’t appeal to everyone, but done well it can make your bathroom the focal point of your home. Clever spotlighting will bounce off your black floor, bringing the whole space to life.

Posted on by Paul Smith | Posted in Flooring

Tips for cleaning your vinyl flooring

Vinyl flooring is loved by homeowners for its versatility and durability. It is also easy to clean, but you will still need to make sure you are using the best products and techniques to keep it looking its best. Here are some vinyl floor cleaning tips.

Sweep regularly

Sharp bits of gravel, stones and other debris can easily be trodden in from outdoors and can lead to scratches and marks on your flooring over time. Sweeping your vinyl floor regularly will get rid of any potentially damaging items and keep your floor dust-free for longer.

Use a soft mop

One of the big advantages of vinyl flooring is that it stands up to moisture well, meaning you can use a mop to clean it. A soft mop works best, but make sure it is not dripping wet. Just as you would wring out a mop when using it on laminate flooring, do the same when mopping vinyl. While vinyl is water resistant, you don’t want to have a pool of water sitting on a join or at the edge of your flooring, as this could seep through to the floor underneath.

Don’t be tempted to wax it

You might be used to waxing other floors in your home, but don’t be tempted to do this with vinyl. Quality vinyl flooring already has a clear coating to make it look attractive and shiny. Wax will actually make your flooring lose its shine and you will then be faced with the time-consuming task of having to get the wax off again. If your vinyl flooring does lose its sheen over time but otherwise looks fine, you can purchase a special vinyl polish to bring it back to its former glory.

Use the correct products

As vinyl flooring is so tough and versatile, many general purpose floor cleaners will be suitable to use on your flooring; however, you should always check the bottle or packaging to make sure. While there are specialist products out there designed to be used specifically on vinyl flooring, you will find lots of generic cleaners that say somewhere on their packaging that they can be used on vinyl.

Don’t use abrasive products

As vinyl flooring resists stains and damage so well, most dirt and spills can be cleaned up with a cloth, mop or sponge. Don’t be tempted to use scouring products if you encounter more stubborn stains, as these could damage your flooring.

Posted on by Paul Smith | Posted in Vinyl Flooring

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