Wood Floor Design Ideas
A grass grown rather like rice in wet paddy fields hence the name this is a hard yet smooth fibre that is woven onto a latex-backed floor-covering as a simple or a basketweave pattern. An excellent neutral colour in its own right – brown and beige strands with a definite green tinge – it cannot be dyed; the fibre is impermeable. Wefts of other colours can be worked in, however, to provide a hint of colour. Seagrass is a versatile and practical material that can be used in most situations. Because it is relatively nonabsorbent and hard, it does not often stain and dirt is easily brushed loose. Freshly laid seagrass has a wonderful smell rather like new mown hay.
From the leaves of a spiky bush rather like a yucca plant, sisal can be spun into yarns of different weights. It is woven into a variety of simple patterns that can look subtle or strongly textured depending on the weight of yarn. Unlike other floor-coverings, strands of sisal can be dyed before being spun, so it can be dyed as a plain colour or interwoven in two or more colours. Different colours are also spun into a single yarn to give the finished product a subtly coloured, metallic quality. It is also possible to paint sisal quite successfully; borders and all-over patterns can be applied either before or after the material is fitted. It is a durable yet gentle material that can be used for most situations. B
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Wool-based natural floor-coverings
Made from wool-and-nylon mixes or a sisal-and-wool mix, these are a halfway house between carpet and natural floor-coverings. The fibres are spun into a heavy yarn and then woven into various simple patterns, as plant-based floor-coverings would be. There is no loose pile to speak of as the material is tightly woven, the aim being to create the robust texture of plant-based floor-coverings. At the same time wool-based floor-coverings have the advantage of being softer and more easily cleaned than their plant-based cousins. Neutral browns and beiges or subtle, washed-out brighter hues are the most favoured colours. Some have had a herringbone, boucle or othr weave dyed into the pile, which, from a distance, makes them look like textured materials but with an ordinary pile.
Carpet is made from either natural wool or a variety of synthetic materials rayon, polypropylene, or nylon – all with different properties that are used according to the carpet’s function; the fibres can be mixed to combine their various advantages. Synthetic materials are cheaper than wool, and synthetic carpets can be very hard-wearing although their appearance may be less attractive. They also melt if a cigarette end is dropped on them. Wool is a natural, environmentally friendly product; it wears well and has an excellent appearance and superior insulation properties. Most wool carpets contain some man-made fibres for increased durability -usually 80 per cent wool 20 per cent nylon. Quality is classified according to the carpet’s suitability for a particular purpose so, ‘extra heavy’ is very good-quality carpet appropriate for a tough, commercial environment.
All types of carpet are available in a range of widths up to 4m (13ft) to suit different room sizes. Wider, or broadloom, carpet is better for situations where seams are to be avoided, although some people prefer the look of narrow-strip carpet, associated as it is with the more traditional and exclusive methods of carpet manufacture.
The pile of carpet is either looped or straight. Looped carpet is usually woven from one long length of yarn that loops in and out of the backing material, while straight pile is made either by cutting the tops off the loops or by inserting short lengths of material into the backing so that the two ends stick up. Pile varies in length. Short-pile carpets resist flattening more readily. They tend to look good for longer, although this does depend on the pile density and material. Long-pile carpets feel more luxurious, although very long pile has gone out of fashion. One way of making the pile more resilient to flattening is to twist a wool yarn tightly while heating it, rather like crimping hair, before weaving twist carpet appears more textu than a smooth, velvet pile and is a go choice for areas, like stairs, that have endure heavy traffic.