Thursday, July 12, 2012

Flooring Options for the Kitchen

It's obvious to me, reading back over some of my pre-vacation posts, that I'm struggling a bit with "what should I do next?" The house is only demanding 800 beejillion things be done to it, and I don't have 800 beejillion dollars or hours to dedicate to instant gratification, mine or anyone else's.

I think it amounts to home improvement stage fright. And the longer I stand here yawping, the worse it will get.

So. While I was away from this adorable yet demanding little historic cutie, I asked myself, "what room is closest to done?" I made mental to-do lists of all the rooms.

The answer was the kitchen. It needs flooring, paint, and curtains. While none of these are necessarily small items, at least there were only THREE of them.

My Mom, bless her heart, had already refinished the 1970s-era birch cabinets and their original colonial style hardware:

I've already replaced countertops, sink, faucet, and appliances (not with vintage ones, but we needed to get the kitchen functional right away).

It makes sense to me that I paint first, then have flooring installed, and then make curtains. I've already been shopping once, briefly, for flooring, only to find my pick, a Moroccan-style sheet vinyl flooring made by Tarkett, discontinued. It's a shame because it would have paid homage to the 70s cabinets, but with updated colors (the original stuff was a pretty intense orangey red. Tarkett's version came in a medium brown.).

So I've looked around online for things that might fit the vibe of the late Mid-century era. I've found some lovely vintage looking tiles like some Moroccan style from Walker-Zanger and this Moroccan Block Random Mosaic in brown from Daltile:

                                                       Source: via Laura on Pinterest

Nevertheless, I don't want them on my kitchen floor. They're hard and pretty unforgiving of falling little kids, arthritic joints, and dropped dishes. I also don't want the expense or maintenance. Stripping and sealing grout annually? Not very likely.

I've found a few variable-size tile patterns in a vinyl sheet in colors that coordinate with my countertops and I hope at least whisper, a little, of the era.

I like this one, Kingsport Taupe from Tarkett:

                                                        Source: via Laura on Pinterest

And I also found this one, Lumina from Armstrong:

                                                                           Source: via Laura on Pinterest

I wish this one came in a a color besides brick red, though it might be a tad too busy anyway. It's Livonia from Armstrong:

                                                                           Source: via Laura on Pinterest

I'm also drawn to this, Kyoto Brown from Armstrong, that mimics a sheet linoleum or cork flooring, and would bring an opposite look, the calm of a solid rather than the rhythm of pattern:

                                                                              Source: via Laura on Pinterest

My next step is to go back to the flooring gallery and take a look at actual samples. If a flooring guy can spend an afternoon at my house, then I can take care of the rest. Another room done!


  1. Yeah, I would definitely recommend against real ceramic tile. We have it in our kitchen here and I pretty much hate it! Definitely go to the flooring store and take pics of the Moroccan style flooring you liked - show that the the guy and maybe he can get a close-ish match??? If not you should definitely be able to find something that will work. *fingers crossed*

  2. I am not fond of our ceramic tile, either. Unforgiving isn't a strong enough word. I couldn't even begin to count all the things that have broken on it since we moved in 7 years ago... dishes, glass jars falling out of the fridge, vases, plastic jars falling out of the fridge... luckily, no bones yet. Yes, some of those things might have still broken on a softer floor, but I bet a bunch of them wouldn't have!

    Looks like you've found some good choices. Wishing you the best of luck getting your kitchen done! :)