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Kitchen Flooring Options — Narrowed Down To Two

Y’all were so incredibly helpful with your kitchen flooring input yesterday!  To be honest, I was very shocked that the overwhelming majority of you who have hardwood floors in your kitchen seem to really love them.  Only a small percentage warned against putting wood floors in a kitchen, but the majority of you said you loved them, they were easy to clean and care for, and they were so much warmer and softer than tile.  I really expected the majority to say it was crazy to put hardwood in a kitchen.

So based on that input, I’ve decided to definitely go for a wood floor, but not necessarily the herringbone floor I mentioned yesterday.  Since quite a few of you suggested keeping the wood I currently have and refinishing it, I’ve given that some thought as well.

One problem is that the wood that’s currently in the kitchen is a completely different species from the rest of the house.  So sanding it and coating it with Waterlox like I did on the red oak floors in the rest of the house is out of the question.  It would look completely different, and look like I just ran out of material and ran out and grabbed whatever discount flooring I could find to make up the difference.

But I could paint it.

So my choices have been narrowed to:

  1. Purchasing new red oak hardwood floors and installing them in a herringbone pattern, or
  2. Keeping the current wood floor and painting it.

I honestly don’t know which one I prefer.  They both have pros and cons.

The main “pro” about a herringbone floor is that I absolutely love the way it looks.

Herringbone wood floor -- Divine Custom Homes foyer via Houzz.comTransitional Hall by Hudson Home Builders Divine Custom Homes

And it would keep the flooring consistent throughout all of the original parts of the house, with the exception of the hallway bathroom.

Herringbone hardwood floor - Munger Interiors entryway via Houzz.comTraditional Staircase by Houston Interior Designers & Decorators Munger Interiors

As I mentioned yesterday, I’ve loved herringbone hardwood floors for at least 14 years now, so it’s not just some trendy flooring that I’ll get tired of any time soon.  Herringbone hardwood floors are classic.

Herringbone wood floor - Candelaria Design Associates via Houzz.comTraditional Entry by Phoenix Architects & Designers Candelaria Design Associates

But of course, there are some cons.

Herringbone hardwood floor - Sroka Design, Inc. via Houzz.comTraditional Home Office by Washington Interior Designers & Decorators Sroka Design, Inc.

  1. The flooring in the rest of the house is 65 years old, so there’s no guarantee that the new hardwood floor, even if it’s the same species and sealed the exact same way, will match the rest of the house.
  2. The floors would be a medium brown, and I wonder if that would be too dark in a tiny kitchen with dark cabinets.
  3. This option would be incredibly labor intensive.  I’d have to remove everything from the kitchen (appliances and existing cabinets), remove the existing tongue and groove floor, and install the new floor…and I’d be working by myself.
  4. It’s the most expensive option.
  5. I couldn’t do new hardwood floors immediately.  While it’s not break-the-bank expensive, it’s one of those somewhat big expenses that would come out of our main account rather than out of my fun decorating money that we budget each month.  And the next house-related project we have scheduled to come out of our account is leveling the foundation of the house, which Matt all but guarantees will happen next month.  That means that new hardwood floors would have to wait until probably the end of next month before I could even order them.  So that would put everything on hold.

The other option is painting the existing floor.

I absolutely love a painted wood floor, and I’ve wanted a painted wood floor for a very long time.  They’re so charming, and I could keep it light and bright with lots of white, which would be great with my green cabinets.

Painted hard wood floor in a living room, solid white floor, via Houzz.comTraditional Living Room by New York Media & Bloggers ABRAMS

I could do it all one solid color like the photo above, or I could do a design on it.  Because my kitchen is so small, I’d keep the design simple, like a large checked pattern.

Painted wood floor, white and gray checks in kitchen, by The Painted Home via Houzz.comTraditional Kitchen by Ambler Interior Designers & Decorators The Painted Home

And I’d keep it bright, like this bathroom floor, with white and cream.

Painted hard wood floor -- white checked painted wood floor in bathroom by Katie Emmons Design, via Houzz.comTraditional Bathroom by Charlotte Interior Designers & Decorators Katie Emmons Design

Painting the existing floor would save money, and it’s something I could do almost immediately, so no holding up progress on the kitchen.

Of course, the one “con” to a painted floor that I can think of is the wear.  But I honestly can’t decide if that really is a con.  The kitchen floor above from The Painted Home shows wear, and I kind of think it adds charm to the floor.  Plus, it can always be repainted very easily.

So those are the two I’m contemplating.  If I were pressed to make a decision right this minute, I actually think I’m leaning ever so slightly towards the painted floor.  Believe it or not, my slight preference for the painted floor isn’t even based on the cost/time factors.  My main reason for my slight preference towards the painted floor is that I can keep it light and bright by using lots of white, and I think that might really be needed in a tiny kitchen where I’m planning on painting the cabinets a dark-ish green.

And I guess I could go ahead and paint the floors, see how I like them, and then in a month I could decide whether I want to swap out for a red oak herringbone, or if I want to stay with the painted floor.

I’d love to know if any of you have a painted wood floor in your home!  And if so, do you like it?  Is it easy to care for?  Does it wear?  And if it wears, does it bother you, or do you find it part of the charm of a painted wood floor?



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  1. What about a resin floor? You can add any color to it and it will wear well. You can add sparkle to it as well. I saw this product used in a kitchen makeover. The floor came out so beautifully.

  2. I love the look of the painted! Especially the one with the darker contrasting squares. The white/cream just looks a little bit industrial to me. The darker one looks lovely even with wear!
    And I do think you bring up an excellent point about the dark dark dark-dark cabinets, dark floors, no exterior windows. I know you’re planning to knock out a wall, but I still think you might want a lightener in there somewhere. 🙂 My mom has finished hardwood in our high traffic kitchen and it is in bad shape after 10 years. Water warping from an under-the-dishwasher leak that wicked. Paint would just help with durability, I think. Also easier to redo if wear becomes a problem.

  3. Definitely painted! It would be fun to do and wouldn’t be a budget-killer. You can always change it out….

    Go for it! It will be great!

  4. I absolutely love the large check floor in Ivory/cream and white on the angle. Think this would look great with your dark green cabinets. I think you are right on about not being able to match the old floors exactly. I say try the painted floor option. I think you will like it and it will look great in your kitchen. I love your blog !!! I think it is the best blog for regular people who want to make changes updates without a huge budget. Thank you so much for that.

  5. We have painted wood floors in our living room. The rest of the house is refinished original hardwood floors. We love the painted floors its been about 2 years and there isn’t much wear at all but I’m kind of looking forward to some wear. My only problem is we planed to paint a toile design stencil (floors are a brownish tan and stencil would be cream) and I keep putting off doing it for fear I won’t like it when I like the plain paint so much.

  6. I think with the dark green cabinets painted is the way to go. I painted a black checker board on my old foyer and loved it so much I regretted not taking it into the kitchen instead of tiling. Yo could even add just a touch of gold with an outline or a small square or dot where the corners meet. I can’t wait to see what you decide 🙂

  7. I say go for the painted floor for cost, ease and for a lighter color. If your like me in a year or 2 you might decide to do the herringbone but I like the kitchen having a different floor than the rest of the house. Either option is great. For resale in the near future I say herringbone but if no plans to move go for the painted look. Good luck can’t wait to see what you choose.

  8. Come on, Kristi, get real. You know that you will probably not be satisfied with a floor that you cannot change in some way. Especially in a little kitchen. Color, color, color

  9. I like painted floors as well as color stained ones. Weren’t the floors in your cabinet inspiration room painted?

    The cream and white combo is lovely and bright. If you used marine paint or even just porch paint, you will get durability.

    1. No, the floors in that kitchen were cerused, which means that they were stained in a really dark ebony stain, and then the grain was filled with white liming wax. But it definitely gives the impression of a painted floor more so than a stained floor.

      I contemplated cerusing my floors for a bit, but I think that process works better with a hard wood, like oak. And I’m not sure what species of wood is in my kitchen, but if I had to guess I’d say it’s pine. I think pine might be too soft to ceruse.

    2. I completely agree! I think your leanings are right, Kristi. And I LOVE the white and cream option! I think I would do some “ore-distressing” too, since it will probably end up that way in the end anyways. 😉

  10. Why don’t you paint a herringbone style pattern. Using a similar(lighter) paint to your cabinet or wall color with a contrasting white.

    1. Oh what a great idea!! A painted herringbone pattern on the floor would look so nice. Something in soft creams, greens and whites to go with the appliances and lighten all the dark from cabinets.

  11. I love the look of painted floors! I think it would look great in your fun kitchen. I also thing they might help the durability of the floor depending on which paint you use. If you ever did have a water issue, repainting would cover any staining that might occur. I love the look of worn painted floors, and if it were me, I would probably add just a bit of distressing as I painted. I think the lighter color would really work with your green cabinets.

  12. Purchasing new red oak hardwood floors and installing them in a herringbone pattern to keep the flooring consistent throughout all of the original parts of the house. i hate hate hate my painted wood floors.i think if you paint the floors now and put the cabinets in and do not like the floors it will be really hard to change them. i was looking at your facebook page and you said you where thinking about put in a plank ceiling i love that idea and if you do it and the painted floors it will look the same.

  13. PAINT. I am installing wood floors just so I can paint them in my bedroom!!! …..Paint.. paint… paint …but don’t do the black and white checkerboard pattern….my kitchen is black and white tile and I hate it…..it shows everything light and everything dark…..my floor looks clean for about 30 minutes after I mop… never put black and white on a kitchen floor….it’s pretty for just a few minutes, on the day I mop. 🙁 I love your wood floors throughout the house…I have old wood floors everyplace else in my home, too…stained.

  14. I did painted floors in four of the bedrooms in the small house. No good. I had to refresh it every year. Of course, there were six little ones sleeping in those bedrooms but still… And now that I saw the picture of the checkered black and white floor, I still want to do the same in my new kitchen in the big house. Go figure, lol.

  15. Have you thought about stenciling your wood floor? I’ve seen some that are gorgeous! You can do a little or a lot and it lets some of the wood show while adding interest. And you could stain any color over the stencil. So you could do black stenciling with a light stain or white stenciling with a darker floor.

  16. I LOVE the painted floor with the white/cream diagonal tiles! As I’ve mentioned before, I painted a foyer floor many years ago and coated it with several coats of clear polyurethane, and it held up great to 4 kids and mud, etc. I used 1/4″ masking tape and just ran the tape from corner to corner, then measured and positioned the tape the distance I wanted the tiles to be (in my case, I made them 18″, if my memory serves me right), then I sponged the paint on with a sea sponge in several shades of cream, white, and light brown. It came out looking like travertine marble, according to the realtor who listed our house a number of years later. You may not like travertine marble, since you are planning to have a marble on your countertops, but just a plain cream/white alternating tile would look perfect, imho.

    Go for it, you can always change it in a month or two if you decide you don’t like it. But I think it would look perfect with your hardwood floors! Now, what size ’tile’ would you like, hmmmm? 😉

    1. I’m with you, Alta, great suggestions. Go for the painted floor, Kristi. I know with you doing it it will be awesome! We had a painted hall floor and stairs for more than fifteen years in our old house with three kids and two cats and it held up great, and it was a breeze to keep clean. We used regular latex paint and three coats of poly. I do remember spending some time on the sanding and prep work though, maybe that helped it wear so well?

  17. I love the painted floor in cream and white! It’s such a good idea: You can just go ahead with it and if you really turn out not to like it (highly unlikely, I guess, cause you’ll come up with an idea that will look briliant 🙂 ) you can always change the look by a new lick of paint or even get back to the plan of changing the floor at some later date.
    Even though I love dark floors, I think in a kitchen with medium to dark green cabinets a lighter floor would be a great choice – esp. in your kitchen without windows. I’m curious about which way you decide and cannot wait to see you make it happen!

  18. I have a painted floor in my Studio…I love it. Yes it has chipped and worn from me and the grand kids rolling all over it. If I was doing this in my kitchen I’d probably pick a different type of paint…I used porch paint, but then again I didn’t really prep the floor, just swept really good and painted away!! I would also put some kind of sealer over the top of the paint if putting it in my kitchen or other main part of my home. I have black and white check on my back porch/laundry room…HATE it. It shows every speck of dirt and dust. I’ll be anxious to see what you have decided to do…I’m betting you paint so you can get started on the cabinets. BTW…I just put upper kitchen cabinets in my family room like you did…big box store wanted $800 to do Corian tops…in said big box store I found ceramic tile flooring for $20. to do my tops….big guy didn’t want a wood top… 🙁 you are a true inspiration…. thanks, Katie

  19. I like the paint idea. I had toyed with the idea of pulling up the carpet in a house I used to own and painting the concrete, but wasn’t brave enough. I think a painted floor will look charming.

  20. I would go with the painted floor. You certainly have the talent to paint it with a pattern. Also, if you decided in 10 years or so that you just don’t like the painted colour (yep, Canadian so Canadian spelling!), you can always change the colour and pattern or you can then go with the hardwood. If you paint it, can you paint it in a herringbone pattern?

  21. I love a painted floor. My best friend painted her kitchen floor with Marine grade paint. ( I believe that is what it is called. It was for boats. Held up beautifully. But I like a bit of wear on a floor)

  22. BTW, last year, we re-did our kitchen and put in fibre floors in a brown Seagrass pattern. The fibre floors come in a variety of patterns and are much warmer on the feet than the ceramic that was installed by the previous owner. They clean easily with a broom, vacuum or steam mop, and can be pulled up and taken out, hosed down with bleach water and re-installed (in case of emergency due to water main break or sanitary sewer back-up! — which we discovered in our previous home).

  23. I had a painted wood floor in my kitchen in the country….we used porch floor paint for durability but it didn’t wear very well. I personally wouldn’t paint it, I would match the other floor with stain, or if your heart is set on painting, do a whitewash so you can see the woodgrain underneath and then seal it with something. Ours chipped off and it wasn’t a good look. The herringbone pattern is amazing but it causes some waste as you know so could be more expensive.If you stained it I think it would look like a design choice just as much as if you painted it.
    Hardwoods wear well, as long as you aren’t sloppy with water, it should be fine!
    Painted wood floors generally look ‘country’ and you seem to favor more transitional design, so not sure if you would like once you saw it in place…

  24. Paint! It gets you ‘done’ for now and lets you see if you like it. You can budget for the wood and if you like the paint you have money towards something else.

    Like someone else said, you like color and this also gives you another palette for more creative outlet. Meaning stencil, pattern, ?? that you can always change later. I agree, lighter floors would be nice with the dark cabinets.

    Can’t wait to see what you decide!

  25. I wrote a long reply yesterday but forgot to fill in name etc then lost my reply. So I wound up giving up. I want to add my favorite flooring is wood. I love your idea of a painted floor. I especially like the cream & tan bath. Those colors would be great with your cabinet choice. You like the herringbone pattern. Maybe you could do what Rachel said & combine the 2. You could also find some colors that would blend a ltitle more with your existing floor. I know we will love whatever you come up with. And we are all hanging on in suspense.

  26. I’d definitely go with the painted. For one, it can be customized and changed over the years, stripped and restrained etc. with the other one the expense is an offset. Plus you said your kitchen is small so once you add a rug or two, how much will actually show?

  27. I like the idea of the white wash on the existing floors or some staining in a large pattern like the cream and white one. I’ve had painted floors and I did all the right things, porch paint, sealer…..they still did not hold up well and they always looked dirty. Considering that in previous post you were not a fan of distressed finishes and the fact that you seem to have issues with peeling things, paint may not be your best bet. Maybe even wood stained in a pattern. Also I would still consider what was going on the breakfast room floor before deciding. I can’t wait to see what you decide.

  28. I’ve had my living room painted for about 24 years and love it. We did it because there was some remodeling we wanted to do before we bought carpet. We loved it so much that we just got an area rug and kept it painted. It does get wear, but I don’t repaint until it gets chipped too much. It’s so easy to clean, and if I decide to change the color, no big deal. A couple of gallons of paint and we’re ready to go. Good luck whatever you decide.

  29. I used a Dremel tool to cut lines into my plywood sub-floor to make it look like hardwood and painted it a cream color. Three coats of poly sealed it and i couldn’t be happier. People who see it can’t believe it’s not
    hardwood. Your floor will be even more fabulous.

  30. I think I would have to paint at this point and live with it for a while to see how I really like it. I would be worried about darker brown floor in an already small kitchen with darker green cabinets. I think a lighter painted floor would bring more attention to those gorgeous green cabinets and evoke more light in general. 🙂

  31. I’ll go with Team Painted. Whle both options are beautiful, you sold me on the time and cost. Also, you could always switch it out down the road if you didn’t like it without a large investment.

  32. I’m confused…can’t wood floors be sanded ,stained the color you want and then sealed? I like the paint idea though, not sure if I would…but now ya got me thinking….

    1. Yes, they can. The reason I can’t (or won’t) do that with my kitchen floor is because in the rest of the house, I have original 65-year-old red oak hardwood floors that have been refinished. They were sanded and then sealed with Waterlox. I didn’t use any stain at all.

      The kitchen has a completely different wood (I think it’s pine), and I can guarantee you that no matter how I try, I’ll never be able to get it the same color as the rest of the house. So it’ll look like I put in hardwood floors in the rest of the house, ran out of flooring (or money, or both), and had to put something cheap in the kitchen.

      So it either needs to be the exact same wood (which I would accomplish by ripping out the pine and putting in red oak to match the rest of the house) or it needs to be something completely different that look intentional (which I would accomplish by painting the existing pine floor).

  33. I am saying this out of pure selfishness, I would love to see you paint the floor because I want to know how it turns out so I could attempt it…but, the honest side of me is saying go with the herringbone, it will be absolutely beautiful , you have always loved it and you need to live in your space, plus you work so hard on your house and you deserve to be happy happy happy (I think the Herringbone will make you happy obviously lol). Either way Im excited to see the project results!

  34. Your choices are both great, but I just wanted to mention that my house (built in 1940) has different types of woodwork, that is original to the house. Although my style would be to have a nice flow throughout the house, I have always felt this looked fine, not odd. It is the original and therefore, it looks right. Enjoy your projects very much!

  35. I think painting is the best option. My entry way is painted pine. I think the paint is tougher than the wood. It is only damaged in places where the wood is actually gouged out. The paint is at least 25 years old. You can either use porch paint, which I recommend, or any latex with poly over it. I am planning on painting my kitchen floor a light cream to lighten it – after having brown carpet for 25 years. I am hoping it will reflect a lot of light. I am also planning on filling the cracks with latex caulk to prevent crumb catching.

  36. Definitely the painted floors, which you could then easily extend into the den portion once you get that redone, making it one big bright happy space. (And a wall of those green cabinets in there too would be a bonus) I’d save the herringbone for when you redo the sunroom, and then you could get away with a darker shade in there since the new flooring would be surrounded by light and possibly run in a pattern perpendicular to the rest of the old wood floors.

  37. Go with your heart and do the painted floor. I love the idea of the giant checks. And you’re right, over the years it’ll get all chippy in you’ll still love it. Will leveling the foundation of the house affect the floor at all? Perhaps it would be better to wait until the foundation is level.

  38. I’d be willing to wager that our favorite pealer will run out to get paint tonight and spend a few days painting and we’ll all be looking at a painted floor on Monday.

  39. I’d re-do the existing floor and not mind that it didn’t match the rest of the house. Old homes are just like that and that’s what Nichole Curtis would do! I just watched her last night and the house she worked on had a couple of different types of wood floors like one was pine and another oak.

  40. I love the idea of painted floors. I agree that wear adds to their charm. If you wish you can keep the wear at bay by periodically sealing it. Or not. You can repaint it for a whole new look if you want to change things up. I have ceramic tile in my kitchen and I love the look and how easy it is to clean. But I hate dealing with grout . Looking forward to seeing what you choose.

  41. The painted floor is beautiful. Couldn’t you poly coat it for increased durability? The white and cream is a nice, subtle design that will disguise occasional lapses between cleanings! 🙂

  42. Oh Kristi, you can make that painted floor gorgeous! Your list of “pros” point right to it! I love that last photo of the cream and white…..awesome! You can always install hardwood some far off day in the future, but I bet you won’t want to 😉 I can’t wait to see your kitchen makeover! Those appliances are too cool! I must use my microwave 20 times a day, I wish I knew your secret!

  43. Did you consider marmoleum? You didn’t mention it yesterday and I meant to ask. If we didn’t live in Missouri, the red oak hardwood floor capitol, where everyone wants hard wood, I would have used it. It comes in some really rich and subtle finishes. Otherwise, I love the herringbone. Such a classic look. Though it will make your countertop color really important for bringing in light. The beautiful white appliances will add light as well the gold light fixtures. I do love to read your decision process.

  44. I’m planning on painting the pine floors in my hall and two bedrooms. The rest of the first floor has original 95 year old oak flooring, but the bedroom area was done with pine and most of the finish is off of it. I love the look of painted floors and I don’t think I’ll mind when it shows wear, it would be appropriate to the age of my house. Can’t wait to see how who go about it, if you do end up painting!

  45. Love painted floors and the wear wouldn’t bother me. If you get tired of it, you can change the color, the design…seems like many options for those of us who like to change things up!

  46. I vote for the painted floor – you always have the option of changing it anytime you want in the future… however that isn’t the case in reverse!

  47. My two cents: the ivory/cream painted floor is gorgeous…I would love to do this and really think it will complement the green cabinets…

    I am glad that people are weighing in with the negatives of the black and white idea as I was contemplating that and can totally see their point…

    Can’t wait to see what you do!!!!!

  48. I would go with paint or opaque stain. If you paint it a light color, be careful if you put something over it to protect it. I did a black and white checkerboard on a very small enclosed porch floor. Can’t remember what I put over it, I think some kind of clear poly, which was not supposed to yellow but it did. It was ok for where it was with a throw rug on top, but I was pretty irritated. Although I love the herringbone floors, I think they are too much work for where you are right now in your renovation. It will all come clear, I’m sure. I look forward to seeing what you end up doing.

  49. I think the paint in the herringbone pattern answers all of your problems! In the white and cream would be spectacular!! I currently have solid distressed oak inmy kitchen with white cabinets and love it. They do much better than they are reputed to do. If I had an older house I would totally do the herringbone pattern in a light color paint with the green cabinets! Thanks for inspiring me to try new things! I have a canvas chair that I will be painting thank to you and my bathroom mirrors will be getting a special frame thanks to Kristi!! : )

  50. Omigosh! Cannot believe you are talking about this today. I am just about to lay some hardwood in my kitchen. (Of course, by myself, duhhhhh!) The rest of my 1946 house has random-width oak floors. Guess you’d call it “honey oak” color or something like that. Bit yellow for my taste, but it’s what I got. Floors are actually in pretty decent shape. So, I bought same kind of oak to put in my kitchen. However, I KNOW that no matter how hard I try I will never get this new floor to “match.” Yes, it’s the same species of wood, yes it’s the same varied width, but my old floors have almost 70 years of patina, and altho I might get the color of new floor close, it would still look different — it would look new. So, I have been trying to figure out WHAT I should do with the new wood once I get it laid. I’ve considered painting it solid color or stenciling some cool design or maybe staining diamonds rather than painting them, then putting poly or waterlox over that. I just don’t know yet. I’ve let fear stop me in my tracks for months now. But I’m ready to give it a shot. And I am beyond excited that you are also considering all these different options for your floor at this time. Looking forward to seeing what you end up doing. Seeing other people try things gives me confidence that I can do it! 🙂

  51. I would go with the wood herringbone all the way! Its classic and so worth the extra effort. If it were me I would always be afraid to move a chair across the floor and so on if it was painted, but I like things clean looking ( no paint chipping). But maybe in the meantime you could paint a herringbone pattern on the existing floors just to maybe satisfy yourself for the time being. I think if you keep the wall color light, the backsplash light, maybe the countertops light and your appliances are white the wood herringbone floor wouldn’t come off as too dark with the dark cabinet color. I am with you herringbone wood floors are at the very top of my love list! Can’t wait to see what you choose!

  52. Check out the blog Shingle Cottage. Krissie and her husband Steve are redoing a cottage on the East coast of England She painted all of her floors white a year ago and loves them.

  53. I recently did some pine (old dresser for a friend) in a grey “wash look” stain and I’m so flippin’ in love with it, I want to tear up the 8 month old carpet in my office (new build, hate it) throw down some pine and do it the same. It’s Gorgeous ! Wish I’d photo’d it before sending it off.

    It was minwax Water Based wood stain in River Stone. I basically slopped it on, then wiped it right off. I loved it so much. I sealed a couple of coats of satin minwax polycrylic over it and because it was for kids, I did test first to see how easy I could scratch it up and I really couldn’t, short of using a chisel.
    If I did my office floor, I’d do big, like 2ft “planks” of that and a few shades lighter, alternating in a diagonal or chevron, but that would work with whitewash and cream wash too.
    Go for it, what have you got to lose but a bit of paint money and some sanding time.

  54. I have Pergo floors throughout the house and it is a light oak color. I would love to do a checkerboard pattern in the entry way and wonder if I could leave the Pergo and apply some kind of darker wash over it then seal it? It could leave the wood look showing through but allow for the light and dark contrast checkerboard without having to replace the whole flooring. Ideas?

  55. You can always replace the floor eventually – but I’m only brave enough to paint an old floor. I vote for painting!

  56. I love painted floors and they save a ton of money, but I’ve had the light floors in a cream/white and with pets it is a nightmare keeping it clean. Even wiping paws, it always needs mopped. Plus when my mom was in a wheelchair, it showed black marks and dirt from the wheels, even with wiping the wheels down. I will never go with a floor this color again!

  57. I am getting in on the tail of this conversation but I totally agree with everybody who said go with the painted floor. I think it would be pretty with the green cabinets especially in a light color. The contrast would be nice and the look airy but warm too.

  58. I used to think I wanted tile everywhere. (reminded me of my trip to Europe) having pets, it would be easy to clean, harder to scratch.. yadda yadda yadda.. I’m SOOOOO glad I didn’t get tile on the floor except in the bathrooms. I honestly had never had tile- anywhere previously and was more in love with the idea of the look of it. Now I have a master bathroom with it, it’s okay but even with sealing the grout and stuff- ugh! WAAaaay more maintenance.

    I really like the idea of the painted floors. The large checker floor reminds me of the cork tile pattern in my grandparents old house. 😀

  59. Once I went to a house with painted hardwood floors, and I slipped and fell due to spilled liquid. The paint made the floor that much more slippery. It might have been the type of paint they used? I love the idea of the herringbone wood floors, but how would you connect it to the rest of your house? How would you make it work if it went out into the dining room area and out into your hallway? Or were you thinking of having it go back into your den? I was just confused how you would make it work and have it not clash with your existing hardwood floors?

  60. I love that you do all of this yourself. You are an inspiration. I love your idea of painting the floors. I think a herringbone pattern in white and a light gray would look awesome with your green cabinets. The white and cream would look great too – I love that bathroom floor you posted.

  61. SO it already looks like you have less cons for the painted floor :3

    The example painted floors you had would totally make the dark green cabinets pop. And you are right, the natural wear would be so charming.

  62. Just a thought. What if you did the checker board with a cream/white and wood stain. You could mix stains to get as close as possible to the rest of the floors, then with only small amounts of stained flooring showing, the difference in coloration might not be that noticeable. I think I would lightly distress the white/cream squares to blend better with the wood, but I just like that look.

  63. At first I was all for the painted floors in white/cream. I think painted floors will look nice, but after considering the green cabinets, white counters and appliances, I wonder if you’d like the wood floor as it will give warmth to the room. The painted white/cream floors won’t add warmth, in my opinion like wood does.

  64. I haven’t had a chance to read all the comments, so this may have already been suggested…. But maybe you could buy one box of the red oak flooring and seal a few pieces to see if it would match the rest of the house. You could also play around with the pattern, even with non-sealed wood pieces, to see if you like it on your floor. If it doesn’t turn out to match, or you don’t like it, then you could paint the floor. And I’m sure with your creativity, you could find some use for the box of flooring you purchased. Just an idea…. And I can’t wait to see what you decide!

    I wish I had the courage to put a color on my kitchen cabinets, but, alas…. I am a neutral girl all the way! 🙂 However, I think your cabinets will be drop dead gorgeous! Good luck!

  65. Gee, I never thought about painting the floor. Duh. That would be a fine option. I liked the one color floor (in the first pic) or the large checkerboard black and white. Am also liking the ‘wear and tear’ aspect of it – of course that would depend on whether your cabinets will have a bit of wear to them or not.

  66. I love old houses with painted floors and I really like the white wash suggestion in a color that’s light so as not to call attention to how small your kitchen is and of course in a complimenting color. Also, we had to have 25 piers put down to level our house here in Missouri City, TX and we were told we had to wait 4-6 months before redoing our kitchen, bathrooms, floors, drywall etc., because the house would be settling and we could end up having to redo the work. I didn’t really believe them but when we called our contractors for the kitchen, bathrooms etc., they said call back in 5 months. We had that done in October 2013. Turns out they were right. Doors that use to stick and creak now open freely and we have a few cracks in the drywall in the den, floors and corners now that we didn’t have before. So if we had put up new dry wall and floors, we would now be repairing them. We have been meeting with all the contractors and finalizing everything so that they can start at the end of the month. I can’t wait to see what you do with that floor. I know it will be fab!

  67. Couldn’t you paint a herringbone design. While it would be time consuming, it would be something you like.

  68. My thoughts:

    New Oak – I absolutely adore the herringbone, it’s stunning. And if you want your floor to the ‘star’ in your kitchen then go for it. My concern is that it may compete with the cabinets. The example pictures you posted had in common: light neutral, simple lines; so the floors shone.

    Paint – You have been working very hard trying to restore your home to its original state/feel. You have these AMAZING (sorry for screaming) original floors. It would be such a shame to remove them. With these floors ‘the world is your oyster’. The options are endless. Besides, you could incorporate your beloved copper into the floors. And I would love to see that!

    I have to say though, my favourite flooring for the kitchen is cork. The stuff is amazing. Warm and soft on your feet and joints. And now it comes in so many patterns and colours. Check it out…for another room in your house. Keep your original floors and have fun with them.

  69. I would paint the floor using a herringbone pattern. It will still give you a nice reminder of your time inn Turkey.

  70. Would a painted floor be durable enough for a wheelchair? And if you did choose oak, would it be possible to find reclaimed wood? It might be closer to the color of your floors than new red oak would be.

  71. If you paint, use Varthane to seal the paint (found at Lowes) that’s made specifically for flooring. I painted and stenciled my daughters wood floor because after removing carpet we found her room had ugly wood patches. A friend told me she used it on high traffic areas and could literally drag furniture across the floor without bringing the paint up. It’s amazing, easy to apply, allowed me to put multiple coats on in one day and has been incredibly resilient

  72. Several years ago I was trying to update on a shoestring. I painted faux tumbled stone tile on my bathroom vinyl flooring. It turned out beautiful and I wanted to be sure it didn’t get ruined. I gave it six coats of min wax poly and it held up wonderful for 8 years until last year when we put wood on the whole upper level of the house. The only bad thing was that room was off limits for a week.
    Love your blog! Keep up the wonderful tutorials!

  73. I love herringbone patterned wood floors too. In my last home I had a dark green kitchen, I had medium red oak floor throughout the entire house but when it came to the kitchen I did have cream flooring…I am in love with your idea of the painted checkered floor, the cream and white checkered really appealed to me. I have it in my kitchen now and my bottom cabinets are black and the top are cream, and of course the other colors in my kitchen are green and blue (my favorite colors 😀 ) So I’m sure whatever you do will be stunning as always.
    You have me seriously thinking about painting my black bottom cabinets a dark blue.

    Always looking forward to seeing what you’ll do next….Co 😀

  74. I didn’t take the time to read everyone’s comments, so sorry if I’m redundant! I’d go with painted, but in a herringbone pattern. If you make it look worn when you paint it, nobody will be able to tell when it actually wears out. LOL
    I have a wood floor in the kitchen, and a wood counter. My floor is actually made of 2×4’s. I took a blowtorch to them to bring out the grain and then stained them. The counter is from IKEA. I love it all!

  75. Why is renting a belt sander to sand off the existing finish & restaining the flooring not one of your options? If the flooring is in decent enough condition to keep & paint, I just wonder why not refinish it?

  76. Hi kristie. Love both hardwood and painted floor either would work. Here’s my question. What’s happening with the dining room floor? Does it have the old hardwood or the old tongue and groove. Or wasn’t this an addition. I think I remember you saying that at one point. I think whatever you decide for the kitchen should carry through if it’s not the old hardwood floor. Painted tongue and groove for kitchen and dining room or new hardwood for kitchen and dining room. If you paint I would not go with any patterns or designs as your green cabinets would be the show stopper. I am sure whatever you do will be awesome. I look for your posts everyday. Cheers.

  77. I think painted floors are cool but there’s the slippery factor, plus they’re generally a short-term fix. I also think there would be too much contrast between this and the other flooring in your house….plus I just get the feeling that you have your heart set on the wood herringbone floors. This is your forever home, so you should put in flooring that you really want – even if it costs more time & money.

  78. I agree there is something very homey sbout a painted floor i love it!!! I say go for painted if you like it……. I think the darker / lighter diamond pattern is awesome.

  79. I would whitewash, or pickle the floors, using a warm white only. Let the woodgrain showing through be your design. Seal several times and let any wear add personality, but the woodgrain and imperfections showing through the whitewash will camoflouge any wear.

  80. I think a good compromise would be to paint the floors with a cream and white herringbone pattern. I haven’t seen an example of this, but I have seen this done in a chevron pattern which is similar and it looked beautiful. Good luck deciding!

  81. Painted floors definately – for both lightness and cost ….and for alteration in times to come. On a diagonal should also assist in increasing the visual look of the room. I think weathered painted floors would look great too. It’ll look lovely and as you say you can alter it later if you wish.

  82. I think paint is the way to go. the rest of your makeovers are quaint, warm & cozy so paint would ( in my opinion) fit with your décor. kind of a country-modern-traditional look. PAINT!!

  83. I vote to paint the kitchen floor. If you don’t like it, you haven’t “lost” much but if you love it you save a bunch!

  84. Everyone I know loves their hardwood floors until their dishwasher or fridge leaks. Then they have permanent warping until they replace the floors.

    I love the look of hardwood, and since you already have wood, I’d keep it. If you’re going to invest the money and time to replace flooring, go with tile. You’ll be glad you did when your appliances malfunction.

  85. Go with the painted floor. The cost is less, you have the opportunity to try it on an old floor, the wearing on it will still look good. If you hate it, you are only out of the cost of the paint. And you can still put in the other floor later.

  86. Wow! Thanks for your reply to my previous comments. Just want to say painted floors are a GREAT option. Low cost alternative it works with budget & seems to fit with “feel” of your home. Keep up the great work. Again, LOVE “Addicted to Decorating”

  87. Paint! Paint! Paint! I love the frugalness of this option and it doesn’t keep you from changing your mind later! I hope you go for it!!

  88. I really like the painted checker boad oppositon! It just seems to be the right choose for a kitchen.

  89. Painted floors!!!! The cream and white would be beautiful with the green cabinetry. I think it would look so dark with dark cabinets and dark floors in there. I’m with one of the others above, save the herringbone for the sunroom that will be very bright?
    Besides, expensive, waiting, might not match, you have to rip up the old, you can never do it differently, and all that work BY YOURSELF! You have to build cabinets and taking on that floor seems so labor intensive and stressful I can’t even imagine. -Especially if a painted floor is something you love too and would bring you a smile of joy and bring such light into your kitchen, not to mention your own signature!

  90. I love the cream and white combo in the picture and would definitely put a sealer over it. I think that a planked ceiling (cream or white) would help keep the cabinets from becoming too heavy/dark. I think a painted herringbone would annoy me because I would still see the straight planks of wood unless they are really, really tight together.

  91. Definitely painted. Cheaper, and a now can do job, a cosy touch. In years to come when you’re house is finished and you’re looking for another project or the kitchen needs an update you can always change it to the herringbone then.

  92. Ohh, I’m torn. While the idea of a wood floor in a kitchen isn’t per se my first choice, I can see the difficulty choosing. On one hand, I can see those beautiful wood floors against the green you’ve chosen and it could look quite striking. On the other, maybe it would be too dark even when you’ve taken down part of the wall to the adjoining room?

    Have you considered putting on a quick coat of paint on the kitchen floor, not attempting to really do a thorough job of it yet just to live with it a bit and see if the painted floor is what you want? It’s a lot less trouble than installing the herringbone floor, staining it and deciding you wished you had painted it? Heck, you could perhaps even paint it darker for awhile as a trial for the stained wood, too?

  93. Inspirational blog! I absolutely love a painted wood floor. Think this would look great with your dark green cabinets. I think it is the best blog for those people who want to make changes updated without a huge finance. The cream and white combo is lovely and bright.
    Keep it up.

  94. Paint it! Worst case scenario, you replace them later on if they’re not wearing as you’d hope or have funds for the herringbone option.

  95. Throwing out another option for you. Use the wood you have and do a stained checkerboard. It would look intentional and not like it would have to match the rest of the house. Will wear better than painted and will be more unique. A bit more work, but you don’t seem to be afraid of that.

  96. Even though you already have a ton of comments I thought I’d share my opinion as well 🙂 I think you should paint what you have now and if down the road you want to replace the floor do it, you won’t have too much $$ invested in the floor to pull it up. I love a painted floor but just don’t have the type of house that it would work in. You are very talented lady that’s for sure!

  97. For our kitchen remodel the floors came last (actually cheaper that way) and it took us almost a year to make a decision. I’m so glad that we did it that way because we had a lot of time to bring home samples, or buy a single box to see the full impact. You just can’t tell what a floor will do the room until it’s in place. I like dark woods but the impact was all wrong and I would have wanted to change it after living with a dark floor for a while. Reading reviews on products and their manufacturers led me away from wood of every kind- we’re on a slab and there always seems to be a little puddle near the dishwasher that only I see and must pick up. I looked as resilient and vinyl flooring, which is so much more cushiony (I spend a lot of time on my feet in the kitchen) and durable than it’s ever been, in addition some are really more environmentally responsible. Another advantage to consider was the insulation factor. Price was always the top consideration that knocked contenders out of the running (I have expensive taste). I should add that whatever flooring we chose would have to run into a small hall, and the laundry, plus had to either replace or complement the laminate wood flooring in the foyer, the hall that joins it to the kitchen, the den and the dining room (replacing would mean moving that laminate upstairs). We ended up choosing 18×18 honed travertine that Home Depot had cheap when buying by the pallet and we only replaced the foyer and attached hall laminate. It’s gorgeous- soft, not slippery, the easiest to keep clean and is aging beautifully.

    I said all that so that you’ll understand better why I think you should paint your floor. I think this is one area where it will benefit you to take your time and painting it would allow you that luxury. If I were to paint my floor I’d paint it a solid color with a rug-like stenciled boarder and contrasting or patterned center. I think that would be gorgeous. BTW, have you seen the floors tiled with pennies? That would look soooo good with your green cabinets. I’ve seen countertops done that way too, but I like the floors best. If a transition would be needed just get the sloped kind.

  98. My vote is for paint…then when you get the floors leveled, if there are problems….you won’t have too much invested.
    ‘course I didn’t heed my own advise and 10 years later I still HATE my kitchen floor :^(

  99. Both. Why not paint them and live with them for awhile. Since the herringbone is expensive, you’ll have time to mull that decision over before making the investment. Personally, I’d do the painted floors and stick with it….but I understand your attachment to the unique attributes of the house. Herringbone just seems so formal and kind overkill in a kitchen. Since the cabinets are green (cute, whimsical, bright), maybe you should go with something less formal in there. Just my two cents. I know I’ll love whatever you decide.

  100. Kristi, On Pinterest there are quite a few pins about ‘Plywood Plank’ flooring. You might get some good ideas for refinishing your pine floors, and you don’t have to worry about cutting all those planks! 🙂 There are some very pretty ones.

    I am just putting the link to one from Centsational Girl; Norton doesn’t want me to access her blog so this is the Pinterest link.