Which stain - Red oak floor + cherry cabinets

opphopApril 1, 2014

Under that cardboard on the floor are 5" red oak planks waiting for me to pick a Minwax stain. Do I stay in the same color family as the cabinets but go a little lighter like Gunstock? Or would something in a brown tone like Special Walnut look good and not clash? We've played around with Provincial, and Provincial+English Chestnut and both came out too dark brown. Any photos of yours to share?

This is the adjoining breakfast room:

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I think you should consider leaving you floors natural with just a clear poly finish. IMO cabinets and floors should have contrast. The beauty of your cherry cabinets will be lost if they blend right in with the floors. I have natural cherry cabinets with natural ash flooring so not the same scenario as yours but you can see the contrast in this picture.

Here are some photos I grabbed off the web that are said to be natural red oak floors and stained cherry cabinets.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 9:53PM
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I agree that I would go for contrast to show off those lovely cabinets.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 10:55PM
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I am biased, but I agree that they should be a couple of tones away from your cabinet stain. This is what I was advised and what turned out well. Otherwise, you run the risk of a slight clash. Maybe even lighter than the gunstock.

I have quarter sawn white oak with stained cherry-- it is the barest of tints to match the original 75 yr old hardwood in the remainder of the space.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 11:25PM
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Sophie Wheeler

Natural oak. Dark floors are over. People got tired of fruitlessly cleaning them every 5 minutes.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2014 at 7:32AM
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Hey, thanks everyone. I am being swayed toward natural and I am happy about this decision.

Someday I will post a reveal because I have gotten so much help from GW about soapstone, woodwork, carpeting, siding, and window treatments. This site rocks!

    Bookmark   April 2, 2014 at 11:59AM
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Just another "real life" example for you. I think our cabinets are a bit redder than yours, but similar idea--natural oak floor finish with darker cabinetry.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2014 at 12:17PM
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This is what I used with my stained cherry cabinets---the color is called coffee on hickory floors. I like that it isn't such a stark contrast.

Even though my floors are darker, I find them gorgeous. And I don't care if they are "out" or not. My house is for me!

    Bookmark   April 2, 2014 at 2:07PM
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For those of you who have a natural wood floor, did you use natural stain, or is the finish applied directly to the wood?

This post was edited by harmonyhill on Thu, Apr 3, 14 at 7:26

    Bookmark   April 3, 2014 at 7:23AM
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My cherry cabs have a chocolate glaze, my oak floors are just a bit lighter. I was worried it would be too dark all together, but its not. There is a lot of variation in the floor, and it hits the cab color here and there. And even a bit of the dog color, lol. I did really like the unstained color, but that wouldnt have worked for us for the whole first floor.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2014 at 7:42AM
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I have the opposite. My floors are cherry (jatoba) and my cabinets are oak.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2014 at 7:51AM
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A vote for the contrast!

    Bookmark   April 3, 2014 at 8:57AM
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OOTM_Mom, what is the name of your floor stain. It is lovely with your cabinets, and your pooch!

    Bookmark   April 3, 2014 at 10:04AM
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Just lost internet and my message - Grrr
I really struggled with this as well. I didn't want to replace the floor, so sanded and coated- no stain. It is oak but not solid oak(I think it would bring called an oak laminate- probably has 8-18 years of life left)
Everything looked like we were trying to match but failed. The floor has a lot of variation in it. If I started from scratch- I would have more contrast similar to badgergal.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2014 at 12:11PM
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Here is a picture of the samples they put down for me, on the left is straight Provincial, on the right a mix of provincial and cherry. My old color is towards the back, and the new unfinished oak to the front. It is DuraSeal brand. I went with the blend of Provicial and cherry.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2014 at 1:08PM
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