Most hardwood floors are made from planks of the exact same width and length. There are a few standard widths, but most of them are two or three inches. In the past, that wasn’t he case. Floors were not made in standard widths for a couple of reasons. They were not standard width because they were not made in factories but instead were cut by hand. Furthermore, they used every part of the available tree. Therefore, if you could not cut wooden planks of the same width, you would just use boards of different widths. That’s the most environmentally-friendly and economic option. It’s also one that has been growing in popularity recently because it mimics the style of old hardwood floors. Here’s how to get on trend.
Sourcing Your Planks
There are many different ways to source your random-width hardwood planks. Some hardwood flooring suppliers sell planks as sets of random-width planks. These are planks that are typically all cut during the same batch. Therefore, their color will be the same, and they’ll be the same quality. If you want boards of different widths but not necessarily any other variation, this is your best option.
If you don’t care about keeping the color completely consistent or if you intend to stain it a deep color, you can choose wood from different batches. That’s a good way to save money as well. For example, if you buy different widths of white oak from different batches, you can shop around for the best deals. Sometimes, companies will sell surplus planks or slightly irregular planks that don’t form a full batch. So, there likely won’t be enough wood to cover your entire floor. You’ll need to buy different batches of wood to cover your entire floor.
Installing the Planks
The greatest difficulty with random-width hardwood flooring is measuring the flooring. It can be difficult to determine how many planks you’ll need. The easiest way is to separate the wood into batches of different widths. Then, measure your floor. That will tell you how much horizontal space you need to cover. Then, you can add up the widths of the different planks to determine how many you need to cover the floor. You might need to cut one of the planks to make it fit against the wall.
You can install the planks in a pattern if you have enough of each kind of plank to cover your floor. Alternately, you could install them randomly. If you do that, make sure you don’t cluster the same widths together.