FLOORING SPECIFICATION – Not just a tick in the box

  • 17 Dec 2013

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The right choice of flooring can make or break an interior design and yet it is often the finish that is selected last in schemes. For those that have dared to incorporate materials not normally associated with a particular application area, or indeed specified flooring products for surface areas other than the floor, the end result has been impressive. In fact the most successful interior schemes are often those where the flooring has been seen as an integral design element and not simply a practical necessity.

Bespoke design, extraordinary materials and bold colour combinations can indeed transform spaces – so why not turn the whole design process on its head and build a concept from the floor up?

The most successful interior schemes are often those where the flooring has been seen as an integral design element and not simply a practical necessity.

Nowadays, manufacturers are certainly being pushed to be especially clever with their design foundations. Driven by a requirement to step away from the traditional collections, recent ranges to hit the market allow for the opportunity to experiment with the latest on-trend form elements to create different design styles and effects.

Reflecting contemporary and emerging trends, collections are now being built around the concept of new and bigger tile shapes and sizes, while the mix and match modularity format, along with bold palettes and novel patterns are becoming increasingly popular. These distinctive themes and shapes are sure to inspire new floor design concepts – adding a more creative touch for clients.

The idea of flooring manufacturers giving designers the freedom to blend, fuse and create spaces with individual characteristics is becoming increasingly popular, and drawing people in to experience the space requires suppliers to become even more clever with their design foundations.

As such, unique and unusual flooring design is being used progressively more and more to create a stand-out picture, with manufacturers continuing to push the boundaries in terms of ultimate design capabilities.

Bespoke design, extraordinary materials and bold colour combinations can transform spaces

Floorcoverings are also becoming increasingly specified with the scope to brighten up interiors, with bold colours and highlighted shades used to create maximum impact. As bright colours will continue to influence flooring fashions, many manufacturers have integrated vivid shades – and even neon colours – into their ranges, providing high impact options. In addition, the combination of bright contrasting colours is ideal for zoning to define an area’s use, particularly when incorporated alongside other materials and textures, which can make for an eye-catching design, while delivering an effective navigational route through a building.

Many manufacturers have integrated vivid shades and neon colours into their ranges, providing high impact options

In breaking down the boundaries of traditional interior design, certain finishes do not have to be limited to just servicing the floor area. With this in mind, why not look to extend the flooring design upwards, creating seamless fluidity up walls and over furniture, forming the illusion of an endless design. This effect will highlight and enhance the character and architectural form of the space. All the while utilising
the extensive colour palettes available to distinguish surfaces from one another.    

The ability to deliver one scheme across the entire floor area, regardless of the performance requirements, ensures an interior scheme is entirely individual to any other. Take for example linear patterns – inspired by popular designs from interior furniture and accessories – these can be seen right across different flooring types from linoleum and luxury vinyl tiles to carpet and hybrid constructions. This enables design themes to be blended seamlessly from one flooring construction to another.Suchdiversity means that there is every possibility to deliver new and exclusive design propositions without compromising on desired performance.

Unique and unusual flooring design is being used progressively more and more to create a stand-out picture

In this way, flooring design innovation has, over time, translated into a multi-faceted solution that covers an array of application considerations. The ability to mix various performance characteristics together and then combine them with strong patterns and designs, gives the specifier real power to pull together a truly bespoke flooring solution.

Finally, with the flooring being an effective way to transform the interior décor, it is important to be aware of particular trends and exclusive collections from manufacturers, which will guarantee to bring something special to the specifier, to ensure a wholly distinctive flooring scheme. 

With manufacturers continuing to develop and enhance design capabilities, realising a vision is easily achieved. The scope and breadth of colour, texture, construction and pattern, really does offer a wealth of possibilities to the designer – and with a little help from dependable suppliers in terms of recommending the right flooring type and finish to meet all requirements and practicalities, anything is possible.

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