Sorry about that extended absence, I found myself locked out of the blog for a while! Luckily Rich was able to get everything back up and running so I can finally share the conclusion of our kitchen makeover – the new floor!
The floor was probably the part about the old kitchen I hated the most (and I hated that entire kitchen!) It was a blonde wood-look laminate that was so dinged up it always looked dirty no matter how often I swept or mopped it. I’ve been dying to rip this floor out since we moved in, but the fact that we weren’t ready to start a complete renovation in the kitchen for many years deterred me. I didn’t want to add another layer of thick floor on top of the existing floor or spend a ton of money on wood or tile that would have to be ripped out when we started our eventual gut job renovation. Luckily my mom had a great suggestion based on her own recent kitchen spruce up: Allure flooring. This is a vinyl floating floor that looks like either wood or tile. It was perfect for us because it’s very thin, so we wouldn’t be adding a ton of height, it could be installed directly over the existing floor, and didnt’ require any special tools to install other than a razor blade and ruler.
This product is exclusive to Home Depot, so we grabbed some samples there in different tile colors and brought them home to compare to the existing counter-tops. We ended up choosing Patina, a brown and dark grey combo, which we then ordered online due to a slightly better price.
The floor sat around until we finished up all of the painting we had to do in the kitchen, but the final weekend of June we had one thing on our to-do list – install floor. I was so excited about finally getting the floor done that I made a huge DIY error – I convinced myself this was a quick enough project that we could finish it after work on Friday. Stop laughing. I got home at 7 pm and told myself we would be done in no time. Rich was stuck very late at work but that didn’t stop me – I started putting down the strips of flooring. I was super impressed with how easy this product was to install. Each piece was 3′ x 1′, and the edges with their “grip strip” fit together very quickly, but could still be re-stuck a couple times if the seams didn’t look right. The most challenging part was measuring everything to fit perfectly around all the edges, but once it was measured the product was very easy to cut. But as easy as I say it was, this was still slow going, very precise and tedious work. Rich arrived home around 9 with dinner, and after a quick break to inhale some burritos, the two of us worked together until just after midnight to finish up everything, including figuring out how exactly to deal with the fact we were about 1 or 2 square feet short on flooring. (The answer is patching together some scraps under the refrigerator - it might not be the best looking, but who is going to look under our fridge? Better than having to purchase an entire new box of 24 sq. ft. of flooring.) After we finished we sprawled out on our new floor with a glass of wine, admiring all our hard work. We were very sore the next morning, but it helped to be able to go into the kitchen and admire the floor to be reminded of how we earned that soreness.
Simon admires it too!
A month into living with the floor, we are still loving it. The dark color makes the kitchen look so much better, and I don’t feel like I’m walking around on a nasty dirty floor anymore. It feels really great underfoot as well. But I’ll never start another project like this after work on a Friday night!