HELP... Distressing the floor

kelliuSeptember 19, 2009

Sanding our kitchen floor (Douglas Fir). There are several areas that need work and also an assortment of nails in the floor. I was thinking of distressing the floor to hide these imperfections. Any tips out there? I certainly don't want to ruin the floor, but being that it has many small problems, I thought this was a good alternative. The house was built in 1938 and is an English Tudor. Our new cabinets are Hickory and the new counter is a ceramic tile (uneven browns/grays and marble effect). THANK YOU IN ADVANCE!! PS. I posted this in the "Floors" forum but not much action there.

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You want to better blend the new into the old? Make a few nail holes with an icepick or awl. Walk on the sanded boards without finish for a month or two. wear stiletto heels and cowboy boots (not simultaneously). Drop a hammer and a screwdriver a couple of times. Lay a chain on the floor and walk it in a bit.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2009 at 3:02PM
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I'm understanding that you are refinishing old floors and want to disguise a few problems by creating many. Honestly, I can't imagine why anyone would want to do this! I think it will happen on its own all too soon.

We have original (1905) fir floors that we refinished prior to moving in 16 years ago, at which point they were already so beat up that most people would probably have considered them worthy of replacement. Raising our kids on them distressed them plenty more - my basic advice would be not to do purposeful damage as they are soft enough to get damaged quite enough in time (every time I drop something it leaves a dent).

Ours are actually so bad that long splinters come off the edges of the boards - the top of the "groove" has been sanded down so far that it has broken off in many places, unevenly, leaving exposed edges. More than a few very long splinters have gone into feet here, some quite far. I don't know if this is particular to fir or happens with other types of wood floors as well, but in our historic neighbourhood in the Pacific Northwest (Douglas Fir country) I've heard of this happening to others. Just thought I'd mention that as a further dissuasion to unnecessary distressing!


    Bookmark   September 20, 2009 at 10:48PM
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We put new wide plank pine flooring in and it isn't getting a patina as quickly as I would like. I saw someone else that did above with new pine planks. Had the workers on them for a few months then finished the floors with oil. Believe me hers immediately look old with a beautiful patina, mine do not. I am sorry we tried to protect ours.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2009 at 9:34AM
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Thank you ALL for your suggestions. I really appreciate the advice. Still not sure what I will do at this point but I am not in a hurry...

    Bookmark   September 22, 2009 at 5:47PM
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I am about to put in wideboard flooring in an addition and was surprised by the installer telling me that people actually pay extra to have their new floors distressed so that they look older. We have 170 year old floors in the house already and plan to let the new floor get scratched up a bit before sealing it. We are also having it nailed in the same pattern as the older floors.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2009 at 11:34AM
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we had to replace some floor,we had a guy come in blend,antique them,he darkened holes,stained areas to look wore,nobldy knows which is old which is new,we had to paint so he antiqued all trim,doors,you cannot tell.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2009 at 9:38PM
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