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Country’s Best Cabins Visits DIY Network’s “Blog Cabin”

Our editor checks out the smartly designed Chesapeake getaway and gets the scoop on some new flooring applications.
by Whitney Richardson

DIY Network Blog Cabin Exterior
This cabin maximizes a 900-square-foot footprint spanning three levels with open spaces and plenty of windows to capture the amazing waterfront view.

Barn door? Check. Fireplace surround? Check. Oar?! Check.

Creativity opportunities in home design are never lacking, and they show up in full force in DIY Network’s fifth installment of its "Blog Cabin" series. From unusual applications (such as an old oar from the local high school used as a handrail on the stairwell and a piano key cover turned over to create a vanity shelf for soap and other bathroom items) to new uses for older items (such as a vintage fireplace surround flipped vertically to encase a flat-screen TV in a game room), the elements that this project’s team — and viewers, for that matter — selected help incorporate some of the local flavor and historical value of this restoration project into the 2,700-square-foot cabin.

Although many original elements had to be taken down — the original hand-cut studs, for example, were removed and refashioned into shelving and tables — others were left intact. The wood stair treads remained, so a more traditional-looking Bellawood heartpine floor across all three levels was chosen by viewers to complement them. That’s not to say there weren’t other options, however. We caught up with representatives from Lumber Liquidators, who supplied the flooring, to learn a little bit more about some of the up-and-coming trends in the hardwood flooring marketplace.

reclaimed flooring trend1. Reclaimed wood. Although not new by any means, reps have noticed an increasing interest from consumers in reclaimed wood or hand-scraped finishes to recreate a similar look, namely because of the authenticity it lends to the home and the originality inherent in the appearance from the nail holes, scrapes, etc. (Read: It’s not what everyone else has in their home.)

2. Color. Floors are becoming less something to simply walk upon in the home and more part of the design aesthetic of the home. As such, color is increasingly coming into play, from subtle grays to vibrant reds and cobalt blues. A new twist: dual-tone metallics, which underlay a shimmery base beneath the basic wood grains in the planks and glimmer when light shines upon them.

3. Wide format. In the past few years, the traditional 2 ¼-inch planks have been replaced in favor of those reaching 5, or even 7, inches. However, that trend may begin to lose ground soon as people continue to build smaller homes with smaller spaces that can be dwarfed by such wide planks. The forecast: a happy compromise at about 4 inches wide.

border flooring trend4. Borders. Unique aesthetics don’t stop at finishes. Even traditional flooring options, such as the steadfast white oak, can be revamped into something original when mixed together to create designs or borders within the floor. Such patterns can also assist in distinguishing once space from another within an open layout.

5. Bamboo. Though the reed has been touted for a while as a green finishing option, the look has remained somewhat contemporary — until now. From wire brush finishes (comparable to a hand-scraped look) to grained stamping and screen prints, bamboo products are now available to use the more easily regenerative material but still infuse a traditional or rustic look into your home.

You can check out more on the Blog Cabin here.

Published in Country's Best Cabins
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