Hand Scraped & Distressed Hardwood Flooring Facts

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Hand scraped and distressed woods have been all the rage for several years. This popular style is an excellent choice to help hide nicks, dents, and scratches inherent to hardwood floors while making a fabulous fashion statement.  Basically, they add personality to a room while withstanding high traffic. Crossing many styles boundaries, hand scraped is a favorite for country, old world, and rustic designs. A major bonus to hand scraped styles is the species of choice is often the super hardy hickory wood which ranks in the 1800’s on the janka scale (that’s industry talk for “extremely scuff and dent resistant.”)

Hand scraped gets its name from the once-common technique of using a draw knife to scrape a plank into levelness. The woodworker pulls the draw knife, a single blade with a handle at either end, toward himself to remove shavings to make a level surface; yet, hand scraped wood is not perfectly smooth. The surface has slight unobtrusive ridges or waves that run the length of the plank contributing to it’s rustic beauty.

Distressed features in hardwood are man induced techniques that create an antiquated appearance as if your wood was reclaimed from an Italian villa or turn of the century barn. Chains, hammers, chisels, awls and saw blades are just some of the tools used to create dents and cracks on the wood. Drills, ice picks and wire are used to create worm hole effects. Some contractors hammer nuts and bolts into the floor or pour liquid metal to create a bullet-hole effect. The possibilities are endless. Even a broken beer bottle has been used on a floor to create a crystallized effect. Another popular effect is to add burn marks to the floor by using various methods including a soldering iron, heated nuts and bolts or lacquer thinner. A great deal of consideration goes into creating products that look as if nature was the genius behind the perfectly placed markings.

While distressed hardwood is found in hand scraped styles, not all hand scraped wood is distressed. So if highly distressed wood sounds too extreme for your purposes, but still want rustic charm, no need to be “distressed”, you can find plenty of gorgeous products with moderate hand scraping and no distress applied.

Western Carpet carries a diverse selection of Hand Scraped and Distressed hardwood, laminate, and wood replica porcelain tile. Come check it out.

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