wood

How to pick the right finishes for your room

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Long gone are the days when bedrooms that were sold in matching sets were the most desirable look. Now, it often seems like it takes a professional (like me!) to pull together a room. 

Here are just a few helpful hints when selecting furniture:

Select three finishes that you enjoy. Do you like a high-gloss white lacquer? Or do you like dark walnut? If so, write a list of finishes you like. Now select three from this list and only purchase furniture in these finishes. Each room should have a mix of these finishes. If one room has more of one color, make the next room have more of one of the other two color options. 

If you aren't sure what finishes you like, go to a furniture store nearby and ask the sales person to tell you about the options they have available. I would suggest going to a store that will have more than one finish option for each item they show. For example Bassett Furniture, Restoration Hardware, sometimes Pottery Barn/West Elm/Macy's can have finish options. This should help give you an education on the types of finishes available in the market. From here, you will probably have a strong gut reaction either for or against each finish. Write these down, or keep a mental note about the ones you liked. 

For instance, were you drawn to oak finishes? Or did you not like the walnut options that you saw? Keep a list. 

From this list, note a light, medium, and dark option that you liked best. Use these as your three finishes to look for when shopping.     

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How to Choose the Best Wood Flooring for Your Home

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There are many types of wood flooring options that come in many different sizes, shapes, and variations. Wood is durable, and can help absorb sound.

Hardwood comes in many different types of species, board widths, colors, textures, hardness, finish. Hardwood typically costs $3- $10 a square foot. The following are some of the most common wood floor species:

  • Ash

  • Beech

  • Birch

  • Cherry

  • Maple

  • Walnut

  • Teak

  • Oak

  • Pine

  • Cork

  • Bamboo (is actually a grass, not wood, but is often categorized as wood flooring).


You can paint wood floors using traditional oil-based enamel wood paint, or latex enamel wood paint. Try get a paint that contains polyurethane. This chemical adds strength and is great for slightly humid environments. If you can’t find one, you can always apply a coat of polyurethane afterwards so don’t worry about it. There are four levels of sheen for wood paint and each has a different reflective quality defined by the percentages below. Starting from the shiniest, they are glossy (75%), semi-gloss (55%), satin (40%) and matte (20%).

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