Key Flooring Terms You Need to Know
Bone up on essential flooring terms for every type of application
Bevelled: A finish (in the shape of a V) on the edge of hard flooring planks or tiles.
Ceramic: A tile material made from clay and permanently hardened by heat.
Coir: A natural fibre made from the husks of coconut, used to create rugs, mats and more.
Cut and loop: A carpet style made of loops and cut fibres of varying heights that together create a textured appearance.
Engineered: A construction method that combines multiple layers of material to form a hard floor, such as these Plantino Engineered Oak boards in ‘Naturale’ by Choices Flooring. This style of construction creates a stable floor that is easy to install, especially when compared to hardwood.
Foot traffic: A term used to describe the amount and rate at which people (and pets) travel in a specific area.
Glaze: A tile coating comprised of silica, fired at high temperatures to create a glassy surface.
The basics of engineered wood floors
Hardwood: Timber flooring made solely out of hard species of wood.
Herringbone: A traditional European floor pattern that can be installed in a number ways, with or without a border. This modern dining space features the most popular pattern, commonly referred to as chevron or French herringbone.
High-low loop: Also referred to as multi-level loop, this carpet style is made of loops at varying heights that form a textured style.
Jute: A natural fibre from the stalks of plants in the Corchorus genus.
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Laminate: A synthetic, engineered hard flooring with timber-look design. This laminate floor demonstrates how easy it is to mistake laminate for timber.
Level loop: A carpet style made of loops at the same height that form a textured appearance.
Level-cut loop: A carpet style made of loops and cut fibres at the same height to form a textured appearance.
Lineal metre: A measurement at the width in which carpet is produced (generally 3.66 metres or 4 metres). In most cases carpet is sold in lineal metres, but promoted in square-metre pricing in order to make the shopping process easier.
Loop: A style of carpet created by the carpet pile forming a loop; it comes from the backing to its full height, forms a loop and then returns to the backing.
Luxury vinyl (LV): Synthetic flooring with stone or timber designs that is generally manufactured to a higher quality compared to vinyl. LV is also referred to as luxury vinyl tile (LVT) or luxury vinyl plank (LVP).
Nesting (also referred to as random or nestled): Short hard-flooring board lengths that are included within packs of full-length boards.
Parquetry: A geometric pattern in which certain hard flooring planks and tiles can be laid. Reflecting the history of this beachside home, this stunning hardwood parquetry creates a sophisticated entertaining area.
PET: Short for polyethylene terephthalate, a type of polyester that most of us would commonly associate with recyclable plastic drink bottles. When it comes to flooring, PET carpet fibres are made from PET chips, a majority of which are recycled materials.
Pile reversal shading: An optical illusion caused by light reflected or absorbed from disturbed carpet pile, giving the appearance of a difference in carpet colour.
Porcelain: A tile material made from clay and permanently hardened by heat. The quality of clay, in addition to the pressing and firing process, provides a stronger and less porous material when compared to ceramic.
Pressed (also referred to as Cushion, Round or Soft): A tile finish created by the tile mould or pressing to create slight curves on all edges.
Rectified: A tile finish in which all edges have been mechanically finished in order to achieve exact dimensions and near-perfect straight edges. The grey tiles featured in this Perth home have a rectified finish to perfectly set the foundation for its contemporary design.
Rigid/hybrid: New in the market, rigid floors combine the structural stability of engineered flooring with the practicality of a laminate or luxury vinyl.
Scotia: The most common type of decorative moulding used to cover the expansion gap of hard flooring without removing the skirting board. The timber scotia used in this Sydney home seamlessly ties in with its engineered-oak flooring, to provide a clean finish for their contemporary style.
- A carpet style made of loops in straight rows that form a textured appearance.
- A natural carpet fibre extracted from the leaves of the Agave sisalana.
Square edge: A square finish on the edge of hard-flooring planks or tiles, such as the floor tiles featured in this Scandinavian-style bathroom.
Square metre: A measurement used to determine the quantity of flooring required. One square metre is a square of space in which all sides measure exactly one metre.
Underlay: A layer of cushioning used to enhance comfort, insulation and the longevity of carpet and engineered flooring.
Vinyl: Synthetic flooring most commonly available in stone or timber designs. Vinyl flooring generally comes in sheets, tiles or planks. Although it may be hard to believe, this contemporary dining space features vinyl flooring, highlighting the quality of designs now available.
Watermarking (also referred to as permanent pile reversal shading): A change in carpet pile direction that randomly appears in irregular shaped light and dark patches.
Wool blend: A fibre made from wool and synthetic materials, the most common of which is 80/20 (80 per cent wool/20 per cent synthetic). Wool blend rugs such as this gorgeous Bellwood design by Tappeti Hand Crafted Rugs and Carpets are a fantastic way to bring warmth and colour to open-plan spaces.
So now that you have a better understanding of key flooring terms, enjoy exploring the many choices available like a seasoned pro.
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