Blog RSS Feed

Blog

Hickory dickory what?

Added on June 6, 2016 by admin

    For the last 13 years that Wall to Wall Flooring has been in business, we've had sales come and go. We've had blow out laminate sales, luxury vinyl specials, carpet discounts; and now, we have a killer deal on some beautiful hardwood floors. What's the reason for this sale? Simply put, when we get a deal, you get a deal.

    If you're looking for a hard surface at a reasonable rate, look no further than our current hickory hardwood special. In 4 different colors by 2 different manufacturers, both Naturally Aged Flooring and Maxwoods make fantastic products that are hard to beat at our price point of $2.99 per square foot; and with 2 of the 4 colors being random width, we're offering a deal that turns even the most modern designer's head.

        After doing some research on hickory, I've come to find out that there are 19 different kinds of hickory hardwoods around the world. What takes me by surprise is that with all of these off shoots of one tree, the grain variation embedded in each piece of wood is similar. No matter where it may be from, you can always tell a hickory flooring due to its unique grain design; whether it's the Southern shagbark hickory that grows in limestone soil, or kingnut hickory that grows in wet, bottomland forests; you can always tell hickory hardwood from the rest. 

    Rating at an 1820 on the Janka Hardness scale, this domestic wood species is harder thank oak; making it a product that will last. While hickory may not be impervious to these elements, hickory is resistant to termites, mold, fungus, scratches, and general wear and tear. Hickory floors give you a good bang for your buck. So when you're done looking around to get a good deal, and tired of haggling with businesses that won't budge for your budget, stop into the one store that already has; Wall to Wall, "Your one stop flooring center."

 

Floor Cleaning the Hard Way

Added on April 22, 2016 by admin

    Starting off, let me just say that if you have hardwood floors, don't use harsh chemical cleaners on them. That means no bleach, no rubbing alcohol, none of that. You can get away with those products on tile, but not on hardwood. How do I know? Lets just say that I've been reprimanded for using the wrong cleaning material on the wrong flooring surface before. Hardwood floors are a natural material that can and will be effected over time by whatever products they encounter; and while you can get away with harsh chemicals (for a time) on products like tile,  the chemicals you use can damage the floor you use them on if used too much.

    My favorite cleaning product for in home use is bleach. For some reason, I like the smell of my kitchen or bathroom after I've just bleached the floor or the shower walls. If clean has a smell, to me, it's bleach; however, long term use of bleach can erode certain materials such as grout, so don't be like me and use bleach sparingly when you're cleaning. If you want to avoid bleach all together, Bona Tile and Stone Cleaner is a reliable product that we promote here at Wall to Wall. Also, one way to minimize grout deterioration when cleaning a shower stall is to simply spray the shower grout lines 2-3 times per week with vinegar mixed with water. This will prevent mildew build up and is a natural way to clean. While this method might leave my nose a little sad, it will undoubtedly save some brain cells.

    Here at Wall to Wall, we suggest to customers purchasing hardwood floors from us to use Bona Professional Hardwood Floor Cleaner. While other products can leave a haze on their floors after "cleaning," we have found that Bona will stand up to any test. Its's a reliable product that we provide to all of our customers who purchase wood floors from us, at no charge, for long as the floor belongs to them. Besides that vinegar and water, or even Windex are suitable substitutes.

    As I am in the middle of typing this blog, an alarm on my phone went off telling me to "clean up" my work space and get ready to go home. Now that's funny. Let me conclude by saying that a little elbow grease, a terry cloth towel, and the right cleaning product will go a long way. So get some gloves on, and get ready to get clean. When you're done, our store will be sparkling and waiting for you. Wall to Wall, "Your one stop flooring center."

 

Blue Mountain Majesty

Added on April 15, 2016 by admin

    Singer, song-writer Brandon Heath reminded me of something today; he reminded me of how much I loved my vacation in Tennessee a few months ago. The quiet country feel, the mountain terrain, the rugged way that the winding roads feel as you walk up and down them, the log cabins and their hardwood floors inside; the country just feels home. The funny thing is that although I was born in Oklahoma, I've never really been a country kinda guy until I married my wife ; and I gotta say, she won me over.

    The good ole country feelin' my wife and I love isn't everyone's cup of tea. All too many people today want the quick service, high speed internet lifestyle that tends to surround everything we have and do in this day and age. Are you hungry? There's take out. Do you want some coffee? Have some instant and mix it with your microwaved, boiling hot water. Do you hate commercials on tv? Watch the on demand channel. While all these things (besides the instant coffee) can be good, we tend to focus so much on them that we forget the little things like having hobbies. Kids today tend to play more Minecraft than they do draw; or substitute running around outside for an evening talking to Facebook "friends." The simple life has gotten so complicated that you can't seem to differentiate simple from overwhelming; but that's where the latest, lasting flooring trend might be able to help.

    All too often people come into Wall to Wall asking for a hand scraped wood floor. The glossy trend has faded away, and this new, yet reliable trend has taken it's place, and it appears for the long haul. Hand scraped and distressed wood floors are creeping up on the purchasing public. People want that country feel with the fast pace of a modern America; and they're getting just that. People are walking into houses that feel like homes now; characterized by distressed, hand scraped hardwood floors that are being installed country wide. People may want the latest trend, but they long for something that is lasting, and while a floor may not be the answer to their soul's deepest longing, it is something that will be warm and lasting in their homes.

    One of the most common hand scraped, distressed flooring surface is oak. It's a warm, solid surface that will never fade with failing fashions. Generally speaking, when someone is thinking of wood floors, they think of an oak floor, knots and all. Still, when you put an oak flooring surface next to an acacia, or a hickory sample, it is noticeable that each species has its own characteristics. Acacia looks like someone made a cappuccino and swirled the froth atop it in with the coffee itself, leaving a beautiful design, and put it on a hard surface. It's quite different to any other hardwood flooring surface you will find. Hickory looks similar to the spiking beat on the screen of a heart monitor that you would find in an emergency room. Each wood is unique, and the more you study each one, the easier it will be for you to differentiate one from another. 

    The right flooring surface for you, the customer, is always going to vary; and so will that flooring's effect on you. I love hardwood floors due to the fact that they take me mentally to a place that is simpler; slower; more graceful; where there are open fields and running horses. Still, some of you prefer tile floors because you prefer a chill on a hot day and live in the south. Some prefer the cushion of carpet because of the ease it gives the bones in your feet. Whatever your reason for enjoying whatever flooring you prefer, when you're ready to have something installed in your home, call us at Wall to Wall. We have sales on hickory hardwood, luxury vinyl, carpet, tile, and can get beautiful products at reasonable rates. So slow down your day, take a trip out of state, and walk you feet onto the flooring surfaces we have in store. Wall to Wall, "Your one stop flooring Center."

 

Summer heat in Springtime

Added on April 7, 2016 by admin

    If you live in southern states, you are well acquainted with the heat and humidity that seems unforgiving when winter rolls away and spring begins to set in. The heat begins to turn sweltering and the humidity amplifies the effects of the sun on every under it; still there is an ease to this discomfort, and it comes in either tile or wood form.   

    While living abroad over a decade ago, one of the things I used to enjoy doing  was to simply lay on the floor; no blanket, no shirt, just put my bare back against the cool, tile surface of our South African home. While summers in Florida might not be as harsh as the summers in Africa, hot is still hot; and the ways to ease the heat of the sun transcend the distance between two continents. In other words, if I had tile in my home, I would still do this. I don't know why, but I enjoy the feeling of my back against even a room temperature tile; and funny enough, I get the same effect from a wood flooring surface. Both of these products tend to cut the heat during the summer months; whether or not you lay on them.

    We all know the basic principle that heat rises. One principle that you might not be aware of, however, is that carpet fibers absorb more heat than tile or wood surfaces. There are very technical explanations for this, none of which I understand, so let me just sum up and say that even though a tile or wood floor might be the same temperature as a carpet floor, the tile or wood will always feel like a cooler surface; and when you walk on something that is cooler in the midst of heat, you'll appreciate that cooling surface. What makes this also a plus, is that during the season when your air conditioning unit is running, your electric bill won't skyrocket as much due to the fact that the chill indoors will take to your flooring surface easier. 

    Why all the fuss about hardwood and tile floors? Well for starters, they're great products. They increase the value of your home, and give a sense of warmth, even when the floors bring a nice chill to your feet. Secondly,  it was my wife's idea; and I'm smart enough to know that she's smarter than me. Third, hardwood floors and tile floors are our best sellers. We sell a fair amount of carpet as well, but I just want t o draw some attention to my favorite products. 

    So when the summer heat starts to get to you, and the a.c. bill has steadily increased, why not add some value to your home? A flooring project that has either hardwood or tile involved will do just that. It may cost a little now, but the benefits far outweigh the negatives on this one. You can either give us a call, or check out our website online for some of the deals we have currently. So whenever's convenient for you, swing into Wall to Wall Flooring Specialists, Inc, "Your one stop flooring center."

 

Music to my feet

Added on April 1, 2016 by admin

    Lately I've been listening to some broadway music, thanks in part to my sister who indoctrinated me with Les Miserables when I was only 11 years old. I find the melodies, the harmonizing, and the passion behind the voices singing to be moving. I listen to the words and wonder how some people cannot feel an ounce of emotion as the voices they hear surge with passion. The training it takes to develop the kind of talent that lands someone a spot in a broadway production is demanding, time consuming, and flat out hard; and the same way that a broadway play can be moving, the right floor in your home can move you as well. 

    When you have the right floor, your feet can seem to sing songs of gratitude as you walk on your them. Different floors undoubtedly have different characteristics, and just like the characters of a broadway play, each flooring product has it's own identity. Tile is cold and hard and can seem to be unforgiving as it sends chills through your body as you walk step by step; wood floors are solid and warm, making your feet comfortable and at home as they slide across the cozy surface; carpet is soft and can almost feel like walking on a cloud as you step one foot in front of the other. It's funny how just the thought of a warm, fuzzy carpet can almost make you feel warmer even when you sit in a cold office. Just letting your mind sit and think of the warmth you may feel by stretching out on a warm surface is comforting in itself.

    After working in the flooring industry for some time, I'm come to the conclusion that wood floors are my favorite type of flooring surface. Laminate is ok, though a bit noisy, and I like tile in the appropriate area's, but wood flooring, for me, takes the cake. I like the look it gives a home, and I enjoy the warmth it brings as well, even if it's a weaker wood. The feeling that I get underfoot when I walk on a wood floor is simply sublime. Like a crowd cheering at the end of a big musical number, my feet applaud the feeling of stepping on a wood floor. The only reason my wife and I don't have wood floors in our home now is because of the fact that we are renting! 

    My purpose in writing about wood floors and the effect they have on me personally is to ultimately get you, the reader, to ask yourself, when in all is said and done, what is your favorite kind of flooring surface, and what is stopping you from pursuing having it's installation in your home? Sometimes, one particular flooring surface just might not be practical, and sometimes lack of finances may plays role; if it's the latter of the two, we at Wall to Wall can lead you in the right direction to get financing so you can accomplish your dream flooring project.

    At the end of the day, what makes your feet sing? If you think of your toes stretching out and curling to grab the soft carpet fibers underneath them, I think you have your answer. If you love the idea of laying on chilling tile to ease the heat from a summer day, take a guess at what might be your ideal flooring. When you've discovered what that flooring option might be, and you want to talk about having that installed in your home, come swing by our Altamonte Springs showroom. We have plenty of flooring options to suit your needs and meet your expectations. So why wait? Come and stop into, "Your one stop flooring center today."

 

Growing pains.

Added on March 25, 2016 by admin

    For the last few months, Wall to Wall has been thinking of expanding. As many of you may know, we not only specialize in flooring installation, but also in kitchen and bathroom remodels, and we have become proficient at all of these. The question we have been asking ourselves is, " Have we outgrown our space?" The answer is, yes, we have; and while moving from our new showroom is out of the question, expanding the space we have inside our showroom isn't.

    The purpose we have in expanding our showroom space is simple: we want to offer more to the purchasing public, and we want to do that comfortably. The existing space that we have to renovate in order to make this space comes from our current warehouse, and all this week we have been moving our products from our current warehouse, to another one that we just recently acquired; thus the process of expansion has begun.

    Rack by rack, pallet by pallet, our warehouse is slowly transforming into the space we need it to be; a kitchen and bath showcase area. When completed, Wall to Wall will have more flooring products spread over a larger space, and a large section of the store designated specifically for kitchen and bathroom remodeling projects; as this part of our business is booming. Customer after customer, our kitchen and bathroom projects are growing in number; and no matter the size of the project, we don't turn a job away. We value our client base, take pride in the work that we accomplish, and are grateful to serve our community.

    We at Wall to Wall have been in business since 2001, and we have begun to make our mark in our surrounding cities. A floor at a time, our flooring operation has gained enough traction to move into other areas of remodel including kitchens and bathrooms. From small showers to custom kitchens, our level of involvement in home renovation has jumped, and our experience in performing these renovations has as well. The more we do, the better we become at that particular function; and now bathroom and kitchen remodels have become a trophy area of what we do here at Wall to Wall. 

    When change becomes a necessity and you can't hold out any longer, be smart about where you go to purchase what you need. I suggest Wall to Wall not just because I work here, but because I know the product we have, the quality of those products, and the quality of the workmanship of the installers we use to install the products you purchase from us. Here at Wall to Wall, we don't just want to make a profit, we want to leave a landmark. So when you want to experience quality workmanship, and pride in a job well done, make some space for yourself to swing into Wall to Wall, "Your one stop flooring center."

 

Why should I carrara?

Added on March 18, 2016 by admin

    Sometimes I feel a bit overwhelmed, continually writing subheading after subheading when it comes to flooring. There are so many facets to this industry that it's easy to get lost in the smallest details about any one subject; so consider this blog another turn in the labyrinth of flooring.

    All too often customers walk into our Altamonte Springs showroom wanting carrara marble, but not at the carrara marble cost. Many customers aren't familiar with what the cost of taking on a flooring project will actually be. Somebody saw something in someone's house and they want what they have, others just want a new floor, both as ignorant as the other about the cost. I don't mean to bash anyone, it's just the way this industry works. People just don't realize the cost of a flooring project until they take one on; and sometime the cost can start to make your eyes start to change color to what I call dollar green; however all hope is not lost.

    These days, people are starting to fall back onto former trends, calling them "retro." This is, in the words of Wreck it Ralph, "...old but cool," and carrara marble is no exception. With tile taking different shapes, sizes, and looks, it's a good idea that several tile companies have begun to make carrara marble looking porcelain tile. Carrara marble is a style that never fades; and the good news is that now due to it's porcelain look alike, you can have the look of carrara marble at a fraction of the cost. This take on a the classic style will increase the value of your home, and will increase your appreciation for budget friendly alternatives; particularly when it comes to carrara marble.

     It never ceases to amaze me how many people will stop and look at a porcelain tile made to resemble carrara marble, even if they're in our showroom looking for wood looking tile. A timeless classic will always be in style, and due to the number of customers who point out the fact that they've seen a carrara marble tile while they're browsing here, they know a timeless classic when they see one. From renaissance sculptures, to home flooring, carrara marble continues to make a statement about elegance and class. Just because you walk on something; doesn't make it less valuable; in the case of carrara marble, it's just the opposite. 

    Whether genuine marble, or porcelain tile, the look of carrara marble is simply lovely. It's an eye-catching natural stone that is popular world wide. It's been known for it's beauty since ancient Rome, and even comes from quarries in the northermost part of Tuscany in Italy. For thousands of years, carrara marble has stood the test of time, and now it can even be installed in your home; so whether you're a lover of ancient tradition, or just like what you have seen, stop by our showroom and take a look at what we have to offer. Wall to Wall, "Your one stop flooring center."

 

To bathe or not to bathe

Added on March 10, 2016 by admin

    Well, which is it? Bathtub or no? That's the question that seems to continue to arise with all the kitchen and bath remodels home owners are doing these days. People are starting to steer away from traditional bathrooms and eliminating bathtubs from the scope of their home decor. I understand that part of the fun of life if the fact that you can experience and participate in what comes along as "trendy," and I advocate many different trends, but when is enough enough?

    A few weeks ago, my wife and I took a trip to beautiful Gatlinburg, Tennessee. We rented a cozy cabin in the mountains and curled up during the snowy nights when it seemed like a soft white blanket covered the ground. Like the modern trend, the bathroom in our quaint cabin lacked a bathtub; and if it weren't for the jacuzzi size bath tub in the open layout of the cabin outside the bathroom, we would have had a problem. A bathtub may not be a necessity for everyone, but for my wife and I, it most certainly is.

    As I wrote earlier, I like utilizing new trends, however this new "modern" trend that leaves bathtubs curbside instead of in the bathroom seems to be going a little too far; bathtubs just seem to practical to me. Are their children in your home? A bathtub comes in handy. Is your home an investment that you may want to eventually sell? You might want to keep your tub. DO YOU LIKE TO TAKE BATHS? You might want to reconsider your designers' modern creative tendencies and leave your bathtub in your bathroom.

    As a man, I'm not a huge fan of baths by candle light, or reading while in the tub. That just leads to a half empty bathtub, a cold shiver, and a wet book. I am, however, familiar with the idea of just taking a nice hot bath after a long day. It's soothing to unwind and let your head just soak in the still warm water as you close you eyes and let the back of your head hit bottom of the tub. Peaceful, and calm, the warm water seems to rejuvenate and relax you into a place where you can make it through the rest of your day with a second wind. This perk is reason enough to keep a bathtub around. Your bathtub may not get used everyday, but you'll miss it when it's gone.

    Like the 1980's dreaded perm, this new fad will surely fade away. Leave your home its resale value and sell-able attributes and leave your bathtub where it belongs; in the bathroom. A bathtub may not be reason enough to purchase a home, but it's definitely a reason not to; and giving potential purchasers a reason not to purchase your home if you're trying to sell is the exact opposite of what you want. And as I said before, if you want to go with that new modern trend without your tub, beware. You'll find that you used it enough to miss it. Trends are fun, but some you'll find can come around to bite you later on, and this one seems to be a butt-biter. If you're in the market for a new bathroom and you want to make the most of your money, swing into Wall to Wall and talk to somebody who actually knows what they're talking about. We'll stretch your dollar and give you an original look without compromising practicality. So come into Wall to Wall, "Your one stop flooring center," today.

 

The 80's all over again

Added on March 3, 2016 by admin

    From large frame glasses, to midriffs, to neon colors, the 1980's have come back to haunt the living that are trying to forget the negative stereotypes that emerged along side the few positive ones. If, for example, I say the word "perm," a fairy just lost it's wings. Thankfully, perms, overalls, and over sized shoulder pads haven't found their way into this day and age; and one can only hope that this generation will learn from the past. Still, flooring trends and home decor seem to be 80's friendly without compromising good taste.

    As previously mentioned, neon colors are exploding onto the canvases of America's pallet some 30 years after the dreadful 1980's  fashion fiasco; only this time, the colors are being controlled. In contemporary spaces, it isn't unheard of to see a bright color splashed on the wall, or interwoven into a throw rug. In my own home, my wife has put highlights of the color mint to liven up our tan carpeted, cream colored, neutral home, and a little color goes a long way. In the same way that Disney has thousands of "hidden Mickey's" around their parks, hotels, and other properties, there is a theme of "hidden mint" throughout our home; and it makes the space our own. 

    When different customers ask the same question when they come into our showroom, "What will outlast current trends?" it make you reflect on what the current trends actually are. The fact is, there is a classic look that will always stay when trends fade out, but where is the fun in that? Life is supposed to be full of excitement and change; not just neutral colors with no accents to them. That's just about as exciting as a well done filet mignon that hasn't been seasoned. When does movement come into a stagnant space? When does the home you just bought become YOUR home?

    Chances are, if you are reading this, you aren't Amish, so I can freely state that COLOR IS GOOD. I know that concept in today's cream colored market may be a bit terrifying, but that doesn't mean that you have to paint every wall in your home a different color of the rainbow. You can keep those main neutral tones and add highlights of color here and there along the way to your desired design destination. Have you been dying to get a new carpet? You can keep your neutral look and still have some character to it by purchasing a multi-colored carpet. Have you thought about painting an accent wall? Go to your local Wal Mart and pick out a color pallet and find something that will tie your home together creatively. You don't have to be rich to do something different, just try to think outside the box; and if you need some help, start with pinterest and go from there.

    In closing, there are some modern trends that can be tied into classic looks to make something truly outstanding. If you take some time to figure out what you want, and how you're going to accomplish that look, you won't be sorry for it. Make your space your own, starting from the floor up; and remember, the only one keeping you from your desired home design is you; so make some time this week and moonwalk your way into Wall to Wall, "Your one stop flooring center."

 

Arnold isn't the first oak.

Added on February 26, 2016 by admin

    Long before the Terminator was even a gleam in his father's eye, oak tress were making their way through people's homes as floor coverings; hence the title of this blog. Nicknamed "the Austrian Oak" in his bodybuilding days, Arnold Schwarzenegger has a few commonalities with oak wood flooring. Unfortunately, the "timeless" attribute that comes with the tree is not one that comes with the former body builder.

    First, if you are wondering if I am a Schwarzenegger fan, let me ask you this: are you kidding? Who isn't? Now that we're past that we can continue to discuss the topic on hand. Oak flooring, just like the actor, is solid. Rated from 1290-1390 lbs on the Janka Hardness scale depending on the species, oak flooring sets the pace for all other hardwood floors. Other woods might be rated on the Janka scale, but a foundational cornerstone for what the hardness of what a wood flooring should be is marked at oak. It's just a good, tough floor.

    Next, in the same way that even in his political career Arnold was unable to stay from the occasional cameo, oak flooring just keeps popping up. Your exotic floors like Brazillian cherry or African teak are becoming more popular, it's true, but oak floors are still the foremost selling hardwood flooring surfaces to date. Modern trends might say, "Acacia is in," but longevity says, "Oak is it."

    Lastly, oak floors, like the actor, last longer than you'd expect. As I previously mentioned, modern trends may come and go, but after all is said and done, what lasts is what is considered "classic." Oak floors have been around for decades, and modern trend or not, they will outlast every other "in" product; after all, if something is old, it's not old anymore, it's vintage, retro, or fashionable.

    So after the acacia has evaporated, and the Brazillian cherry has been deported, count on your oak flooring surface to be around. It's a good product that you can find at a reasonable price. Mr. Schwarzenegger aside, oak planks truly do make up a timeless classic flooring surface. It has the character and strength to last the life span of your family's home. So when you make the time, swing into Wall to Wall, "Your one stop flooring center," and take a look at some of our oaks. 

 

Wood vs. Wood Look Tile

Added on February 19, 2016 by admin

    My mother-in-law has a lovely home. In the time that I've known her she's been in the process of remodeling, and up to this point things have been coming together nicely. After she had some new carpet put in, a room remodeled, some new furniture, and a little paint, it's easy to see that her home is slowly being transformed into a modern cozy cottage. When talking with her about different ideas she had about the ongoing remodel, I asked her what kind of floors she wanted to have installed, and I was surprised at her answer; while she is leaning toward installing hardwood floors, she was recently exposed to wood looking tile and fell in love. So, as I asked my mother-in-law, I ask you; what kind of flooring do you want?

    When talking about wood or wood looking tile, there are a few differences to note; but as we discuss them, please understand that I'm not trying to persuade any of my readers (not even my mother-in-law [hi ma!]) on which floors to purchase; I simply want to expose facts; but if I tend to lean toward one option, please excuse my bias.  

    First on the list is this; no matter how similar wood looking tile is to read hardwood, it is still tile; so if you're hell bent on wood floors, stop reading here and move on to the next blog (I'm kidding...please keep reading). Hardwood flooring has natural warmth to it that you can't get from tile without adding the additional expense of underfloor heating. Unfortunately, tile tends to be a bit chilly; however, this fact can save you a bit of money on you electric bill in the summer months. Hardwood floors may not burn your feet in the middle of summer, but there's just something about putting your bare feet on cool tile on a hot day. It just tends to cool you down and make the heat vanish.

    Second, no matter how nice the tile is, you will have to have grout lines; whereas with hardwood floors, each plank is pushed up against the other, leaving no gaps. When working with tile, grout lines are an inevitability; however, just because you have grout line doesn't mean it's any easier or more difficult to clean, especially if you have you flooring done with Wall to Wall. When installing any kind of tile, we only use Laticrete Permicolor Stain Free Grout; this is a grout that won't stain; no matter what color juice your grand kids may spill (ma!). We pride the use of this grout because in our opinion, it's the best. 

    Third, tile won't scratch the way hardwood will. A dog's nails can wreak havoc on a wood floor; however, if you're thinking about a wood floor, use a resource called the Janka Hardness Scale. This is simply a scale to rate the hardness of wood. If you have a big dog and want a hardwood floor, this scale will help to lead you to a hardwood surface that won't be destroyed by "Carly's" nails a week after it's been installed. You can find many different versions by simply searching Google. 

    Fourth, while it generally costs the same to install tile products as it does to install hardwood, wood looking tile is a tad more expensive to install than hardwood; but not enough to break the bank. When you go to a family physician, the visit may cost "X," but if you go to a specialists, the cost may equal "Y." If the cost of your "Y" is greater than the cost of your "X," it's because the specialists is a more precisely focused area of healthcare.  This example is mirrored in the installation of wood looking tile verses the installation of regular tile. Wood looking tile is an awkwardly shaped, heavy tile, that takes more time and effort to place properly than it does regular tile; thus the larger expense. 

    Lastly, if you're concerned about price, fear not, for the cost of wood looking tile and actual hardwood isn't too different; but they CAN be. You can find a good ceramic wood looking tile for around $2.00 per square foot. If you're not a fan of ceramic tile, you can find a good porcelain wood looking tile for around $2.50 per square foot. While these prices are less than the average cost of hardwood products, these are best scenario prices, so don't be surprised if the wood looking tile you like costs a more. 

    At the end of the day, it's your decision about what flooring surface is installed in your home. Sometimes, the deciding factor is financial; other times, you just want what you want. If this blog has done nothing but give you insight as to the characteristics of flooring products, then I'm happy. I have my favorites just like anyone else, but I hope I have been as fair in my approach flooring education as possible. I hope that you can find your favorite flooring in the ocean of products that are available today; and to see them, you need only to come into Wall to Wall, "Your one stop flooring center."

 

Put a cork in it volume 2

Added on February 12, 2016 by admin

    If you've read the title to this blog and said to yourself, "I didn't see part one." that's because the gentleman writing accidentally deleted the first version of this same article.  Therefore, I give you,  "Put a cork in it Volume 2." Voila. 

    Have you ever looked at a bottle of wine and thought to yourself, "Wow. The cork from this would be great as a floor!" If you're like me, then the answer is simply, "No," but somebody brighter than us did, and thankfully so.

    Cork is a remarkable flooring option, from harvesting to floor installation. Hand cut by men with axes, the only part of the cork tree that is harvested is the bark. There is no mechanical method for removing cork bark from the tree that won't damage it's core; and once the bark is harvested from the core, re-harvesting from that same tree can only be done in 9-13 years. This process makes cork one of the most environmentally friendly flooring products on the market.

    If you're looking for a soft flooring option, cork just might be for you. Cork has a sponge-like attribute that makes it softer to walk on than tile, laminate, or hardwood, is a natural shock absorber, and even absorbs heat. This means that the floor will be soft and suitable for playing toddlers, will be inclined to spare falling dishes from breaking; and will be a warm surface to walk on. Also, cork is a natural resistant to mold, and mildew, and is a safe option for people who fight allergies. Cork is just an all around, too often unheard of, unique floor covering.

    While cork flooring does add value to your home, and does have that shock absorbing attribute, there are a few things to be careful of. First, if overexposed to direct sunlight, cork can become discolored; so be careful where it's installed. Second, use furniture pads. The bounce back characteristic that was previously mentioned can become a permanent indentation over time if not. Third, if a knife, a sharp object, or a cat or dog's nails dig in, they can take a chuck out of your cork floor.

    With all the pro's and con's in their place, I think that a cork floor is a winning ticket. It has enough variation in it for those of us that like that sort of thing, and not too much for those who don't. Cork comes in dozens of colors, has a few different styles to choose from, and is a "solid" flooring option. For those of you with a green thumb, it's time to make your toes match; so walk into Wall to Wall, your green, "...one stop flooring center.

 

What you need and where you need it.

Added on February 4, 2016 by admin

    Have you ever wanted to swim on the moon or sky drive from a swing set that's 8 feet off the ground? I'm going to assume you answered, "No," to these impossible feats. There are just some things you can't do due to impossibility, and there are things that you just shouldn't do because of good ole fashioned common sense. 

    In my last post I wrote about my father-in-law remodeling his home starting with his bathroom. He decorated according not only to the theme he and his wife wanted to give, but also to accommodate the practical uses of the room he was decorating. He didn't decide to put hardwood floors in the bathroom; he stuck with one of the few products that can actually stay in a bathroom without warping; tile. Still, with all the do's and don'ts in the flooring industry, there are a few things that you can get away with; and the first one that I would like to discuss is undeniably outstanding.

    When I first saw a picture of a kitchen with hardwood floors installed in it, I was floored (every pun intended). It's an admittedly odd pairing, but it works. A few throw rugs here and there by the splash zones to keep the floor from warping over time, and you have a trendy, luxurious, winning combination. If you don't believe me, do some research and take a look for yourself. It's possible to have real hardwood in a kitchen and have it last; there is, however, a way around this modern flooring phenomenon. 

    Wood looking tile is not only a trend that will last, but will give the look of a real hardwood floor; with the feel, comfort, and ease of maintenance that comes with tile flooring.  So, if you're a die hard, "I must have hardwood floors in every single room in my house and there's no stopping me," kind of person, there is hope for you yet. Are you particular about color? Take some time to look around until you find what you like. Do you wonder if you'll get the feel of a real hand scraped hardwood floor? Brush your hands across some of the sample products that you come across; a hand scrape is a popular trait that even wood looking tile can't pass up. This flooring may feel like tile; however, with the hand scrape details engineered into this product, it will also feel, to an extent, like hardwood. This combination of wood and tile has been a stroke of genius, and the sales figures prove it.

    Next on the list of not-so-imaginary flooring design products is vinyl tile and vinyl planks. Way back when, there used to be only vinyl sheets that had to be rolled out and cut to the shape of the room it was being installed in; but not so anymore. These days, vinyl comes in tile, and wood looking plank form, and is installed piece by piece. Installation is a breeze, maintenance is quick, and the vinyl itself is quite comfortable. Vinyl used to be installed only in kitchens or bathrooms, whereas now, vinyl tile and vinyl planks are taking even living rooms and dens by storm. With all the tile and wood designs that can be manufactured on each piece of vinyl, the options and practical applications of this product are vast. 

    In closing, there are some things that shouldn't be because they were never meant to be, and there are things that aren't because we haven't had the imagination to think of them yet. As time passes, the future opens up new possibilities and new idea's; so as crazy an idea of swimming on the moon may sound, get your flippers ready; because one way or another, somebody's going swimming somewhere; so why not at Wall to Wall? "Your one stop flooring center."

 

Not everything is black and white...

Added on January 27, 2016 by admin

    My father-in-law is beginning to remodel his home.  My wife and I were notified that during this process, we will be able to have some of his current household decorations; and while I'm happy to take some things off his hand as his home is beautiful as it is, I can't help but wonder, "Why?" The answer is simple: modern times call for a modern look.

    Every decade has it's own distinct look; the sixties had Beach Blanket Bingo , hippies, and tie dye clothes. The seventies had bell bottoms, disco balls, and Kiss. The eighties introduced perms, neon fashion and the DeLorean. The nineties had grunge rock, gangster rap, and even more music that you could barely understand the lyrics to. The early millennium seemed to be an extension of the previous decade, and this decade has traveled back to the 1980's, only this time men are wearing tight jeans, and women are wearing cut-off sleeve tops. Still, with this decade's trip back to the neon 80's era, the modern in home fashion is the color grey, accompanied by berber carpet, or a carpet with an interwoven design.

    When I'm at my father-in-law and step-mother-in-law's house, whenever any of us need to use the restroom, we say that we're going to take a trip to New York. The reason is, the over-all theme for the bathroom is everything from New York City. From city paintings, to a miniature Empire State Building that stands on the flat surface of the toilet bowl back, the idea that a part of their lives was spent in New York is clearly spoken in their home decor; and it looks fantastic. The walls are a light grey, and there are yellow highlights throughout with red flecks present the room, from via the city cab colors in the painting hanging from the wall, to the color of the towels laid out, down to the colors of the candles. Even the color of the tile reflects a scene from a New York City block; and now that the bathroom has come out as a sparkling success, their home is about to experience an overhaul. Am I bragging on my father and step-mother-in-law's talents as interior decorators? Absolutely; but my reasoning is for the sake of change. 

    You can live with a couch and love seat set for ten years, but after the cushions have sunken in, and the colors have faded due to over use and under-cleaning, it's time to freshen up your home's look. In the same way, the "fresh" look that I'm describing in seemingly ominous grey tones can only be experience when you add hints of color throughout. One colored accent wall can more than sustain the 3 other pail grey walls that enclose a room, it will make the room come alive. Suddenly there is a theme that is blatant on the wall that will allow you to poke other bright colors through, causing a grey room to suddenly look like a meadow full of wild sunflowers; and the flooring can even relfect that theme as well. Mohawk's Smartstrand Forever Clean Silk collection will make your feet even FEEL like you're walking on soft, fresh Pennsylvania grass on a cool summer day. The combination of visual and even physical stimulants underfoot will grey a boring grey, become a beautiful canvas.

    So the next time you're in the area, you don't have to forsake your bank account to see what you can do about rejuvenate your home. Stop by our showroom and just ask us what we can do to help. Our staff is well equipped to help facilitate your next "New York" experience. So what are you waiting for? Come into, "Your one stop flooring center," today.

 

A New Year with New Stuff...

Added on January 14, 2016 by admin

    After taking some time off, it's time to get back to the flooring business again. It's a new year with new products, new trends, and new innovations; such as the topic of this blog. The R.A. Siegel Company has just come out with a product that's a softer and warmer alternative to laminate. It's a product that's an unexpected pleasure to walk on, and a pleasure to write about. The funny thing is, it's made of pvc.

    When I think pvc, the first thing that pops into my head is plumbing lines; but as a flooring surface? Well my friends, it's true; and it's a reliable product. Waterproof and flexible, this product is good for in-home use; including for kitchen and bath areas as it is completely water-proof. The even better news is that you don't have to settle for an all white floor with red letters to fill up the space you are remodeling; this product is made to look, and now even FEEL like hardwood; all thanks to a little imagination, and a little wine.

    Most of us are familiar with a wine bottle's cork. It's made of what it's known as, "cork." It's soft, fairly malleable, it keeps moisture contained to it's bottle shaped prison; it's an interesting little product that is now connected to each piece of R.A. Siegel's new Market Place Collection; literally. Each plank of flooring has attached to it's underbelly a cork underlayment, and this has a pretty big effect on the flooring itself once it's laid out.

    Usually, a laminate floor, or even an older pvc floor, would need an underlayment rolled out to keep imperfections from scratching the belly side of the floor covering being installed; as well as serving as a moisture barrier and sound insulator. This new product already has built into it a natural sound insulator, a natural mold and mildew resistant, a natural moisture barrier, and a protective agent from any imperfections from a sub-floor. The cork backing is what makes the difference; yet the fact that this new underlayment is built in may not be enough to sell the product as it costs a little more than your typical laminate. What does make this product sell is the fact that when you walk on it, you won't get the noise that you hear from walking on a laminate floor. It's quieter. It has a better feel when you walk on it due to the cork backing; it seems softer. It's completely waterproof. It's durable and difficult to damage. It has a 30 year residential, and 15 year commercial wear warranty; and the list goes on. There are too many pro's and not many con's. The only issue with purchasing this type of flooring is that, like laminate, the value of your home doesn't increase upon installation, but not to worry. The fact that your flooring won't be a typical laminate makes for potential home buyers more interested in you home when it comes time to sell. 

    At the end of the day, your next flooring project isn't about what I try to sell, it's about what you like, what you want, and what is within your budget. I can try to sell you the moon for a billion dollars, but if you're not a night owl and have only have $500,000, you're going to leave disgruntled. My job is to inform you on what's out there, and in doing so, I have the freedom to discuss what I do and don't care for; while trying to be fair. So whenever you're ready to start your next flooring project, swing into Wall to Wall, "Your one stop flooring center."

 

Syrup you can walk on.

Added on October 8, 2015 by admin

    I enjoy the thought of warm maple syrup. The smell of it is amazing. It's delicious on freshly made buttermilk pancakes or french toast. Together, the combination fills your stomach, leaving you fat and happy. The best part about it? Now, you can walk on some.....sort of.

    While organizing some products in our showroom, I came across something that stood out to me. I paused to get a better look at what was a dark brown, black current, deep red, Maple floor product. Nuvelle Flooring makes a beautiful hardwood floor, and their Blowing Rock Collection is no exception. Maple Midnight made me stop in my tracks, and is one of the most beautiful flooring surfaces I have ever seen; and while am normally not a huge fan of dark wood floors, this particular product tops the short list of dark flooring surfaces that I would consider buying for my own home.

    As I said previously, I don't particularly care for dark hardwood floor. I normally prefer a medium brown hardwood, without too much variation in grain and knots; still when I noticed Maple Midnight's sample board sitting in its place, I had to stop. My pause at this particular product was an unexpected, pleasant surprise; so much so that when I saw it, I knew it was going to be the focus of my next blog. 

    Maple hardwood is an interesting species. It is used to make bowling pins, baseball bats, and even archery bows due to it's strength and stiffness. It's even the preferred wood to make butcher blocks. In short, maple is just a solid, hard surface; and if you're in the market for a hardwood floor, you might want to look up what's called the Janka Hardness Scale, which simply rates the hardness of wood. From California Redwood, to Brazilian Ebony; if you're looking for a hardwood surface for your home, you'll find out how much weight it can take with this scale. 

    What I thought was most interesting while looking up Maple, is that the part of the tree that produces syrup, is the same part that is harvested to produce hardwood floors. To me, that's just plain cool. A tree that is most widely known for the production of delicious, golden syrup, has been used to make a flooring product that is harder than Walnut, American Cherry, and even Oak. "Who knew, right?" The only question that remains is: Aunt Jamima, Log Cabin, or Maple Grove Farms All Natural?

    All bad jokes aside, if you're looking for a flooring surface with depth and richness, look no further; Nuvelle's Maple Midnight is a winner. If you're not sure what you're looking for, but like the sound of what you've just read, come in and take a look. Our showroom is open from 8am-5pm weekdays, and from 9am-4pm on Saturdays. Remember, you can afford having a dark floor in your home if you have lighter walls to keep the space from looking smaller than what it really is; and as much as I'd like to say it doesn't matter, the color of your furniture also plays an important role when choosing a flooring option. A dark cherry wood floor in a room with grey walls and a lime green couch will look awful. I'm not telling you to paint the walls of your home white and buy new furniture; I'm saying you should consider everything in the room you want to replace flooring in.  What color is the furniture in that room? What are color are the picture frames and other decor? What color are the walls? Will the flooring option you're considering tie well into the rest of the house? Whatever you're looking to do, the right combination of color and design, can create a warm and welcoming environment to any home.

    At the end of the day, the style you want for your home is up to you. Don't settle for something less, and be smart with what you have. Furniture is movable and decor is changeable; and while flooring is replaceable, the expense is MUCH greater. So take your time in choosing what you're going to walk on daily. Choose carefully, choose wisely, and swing into Wall to Wall, "Your one stop flooring center."

 

Update!

Added on September 28, 2015 by admin

    A few months ago, the owners here at Wall to Wall decided to make some changes; they decided that it was time for some upgrades. In our showroom, we already have a vast amount of sample boards, mounted on several displays from various companies; and while we take pride in our displays, we also know when it's time to roll some things out, and put some new things in. 

    Between Naturally Aged Flooring, Mirage Hardwood Flooring, Armstrong, Mohawk, and The R.A. Siegel Companies Private Label, we have a newly updated selection of beautiful hardwood floors. From birch, to acacia, be it hand scraped or smooth, we have a fantastic selection. All of the above mentioned companies may be competitors, but Wall to Wall carries all of them; and we take pride in the products we present. Why are we beefing up our selection? To be frank, it was just time. 

    As many of you are aware, flooring options discontinue; it's just what happens. A product may be too glossy. The trees that were once harvested to create flooring options have become too scarce and can no longer be cropped. Trends that were once booming, are now dying down; and the list goes on. If we, or any company for that matter, want to stay useful to our surrounding communities, change is necessary. This is why we constantly update our products; and seeing as how hardwood floors are of great interest, we sorted through our showroom, changed some things around, and added some beautiful collections.

    While the purpose of this blog is to bring you up to date on our new hardwood flooring options,  there are some things to keep in mind when looking for your next hardwood floor. First, don't let online photos get the better of you. They can be deceiving. Come into our showroom, pick out a few options, and take home some samples so you can see them in your home's natural light. This doesn't mean you shouldn't look at some pictures of different flooring options, just don't assume that what you saw online is exactly what you're going to see in person. 

    Second, do some research. Figure out what kind of flooring that you want, and look it up; just don't get lost in too much detail. While part of the idea of sales is to educate customers, it will be better in the long run to have some knowledge about different flooring options. Better to have some questions that need answering, than have none at all. That fact that you have some information and an idea of what you want, will help the salesman help you find what will best suit your needs. 

    Lastly, remember, if you can't, you can't. Money isn't everything, but be practical when you're deciding on flooring. If you really want a hardwood floor but don't have the money for it yet, save a little longer. Flooring is a major overhaul and is fairly costly. If you don't want a floor that you're going to hate after it's been installed, wait for what it is you want and don't settle. Little by little, dollar by dollar, you'll find that the right flooring for you is what you save for; so be practical, and swing by.

 Wall to Wall. We live to serve another day.

 

Who is this "acacia" person?

Added on September 10, 2015 by admin

    While modern trends travel the world and through the pages of all too many flooring magazines and television commercials, I prefer a different feel. Modern trends are nice and you can blend modern designs with classic home decor, but too much modern makes me a little uneasy. I like sci-fi movies just as much as the next guy, but sometimes, you need to draw a line; and this line, for me, would be made of acacia.

    What is acacia exactly? For the longest time I thought it was only a food group.  I've eaten acacia sorbet (which just so happens to be delicious); I've seen acacia concentrate (which makes a fantastic, healthy beverage); I even used to have a necklace that was made of acacia seeds. Still, these delicious treats are only a few of the many uses for what is essentially just a fruit producing tree that has over 1,300 species, and several different uses. So why am I writing about a fruit tree? Take a look at acacia hardwood flooring and see for yourself.

    Acacia hardwood is an exotic flooring material; but just because it's exotic doesn't mean it's expensive. Let's face it, price is a major determining factor when buying flooring; but the fact that acacia is reasonably priced, makes an "exotic" product, a practical choice for your next flooring project. It's a beautiful wood flooring that will last, as long as you maintain it; but sweeping hardwood floors with a standard household broom once every other week won't due. Every time we have a customer purchase a hardwood floor from us, we provide them with a cleaning kit; made up of a microfiber mop, an adjustable handle, as well as a lifetime supply of hardwood floor cleaner, for as long as you own the home that the floor has been installed in. Microfiber is an ideal material for cleaning hardwood floors; and combined with the lifetime supply of hardwood floor cleaner that we provide, you can expect hardwood acacia floors to last a long time.

    Acacia wood is a beautiful flooring material with quite a bit of variation in each plank; and like every hardwood surface, no 2 planks are identical. Acacia wood may not have the most variation among wood species, but there are definitely a lot of noticeable light to dark color contrasts. "Warm," would be the word I would use to describe acacia floors. I tend to think of a warm cup of coffee when I see acacia floors; not because acacia looks like coffee, but because of the spiraling color variations. If you've ever seen a cappuccino with froth setting on top instead of whipped cream that you can buy from your local grocery store, then you might have an idea of what I'm about to describe: acacia reminds me of when you stir in sugar into the froth topping of a cappuccino. While stirring in the sugar packet you just poured into your cappuccino, you see the feathery white froth, spiraling into a light, then medium, then dark brown color; ultimately changing the entire color and flavor of what you're drinking. The cappuccino that you purchased was warm, comforting, but now that you've added just the right amount of sugar and stirred in the froth, it's YOUR cappuccino; just like acacia floors. Acacia hardwood floors are warm, inviting, and but once you have them installed, they're yours. 

    Another fact about acacia hardwood is, while it's said to be a comfortable surface to walk on, it's also one of the sturdiest hardwoods on the market. This makes acacia even more appealing to homeowners, as these are important attributes for a flooring surface to have; especially a hardwood surface; although acacia isn't scratch proof. If you drop a sharp object on your newly installed acacia floor, or have dogs running through your home with untrimmed nails, you're going to have issues. HOWEVER, scratches and gauges can be easily repaired by purchasing a set of putty sticks from your local hardware store. 

    Lastly (and this is only a matter of opinion) acacia floors are just pretty. They bring a character that is too often easily overlooked. An open space with light cream colored walls and a medium brown acacia hardwood floor gives off a friendly, welcoming, and relaxing atmosphere, that will make you want to sit and relax while you enjoy your surroundings. So when you're looking for a new flooring surface, don't count acacia out; stop in our showroom and take a look around. Pick up a sample or two and bring them home. See what your home could look like with your new flooring options. Let the images swirl in your mind; and when you've decided, stop back in and let us handle things from there. You'll be glad you did.

 

I claim to reclaim!

Added on August 28, 2015 by admin

    In 1887, a young, 23 year old, married man, bought a plot of land in Northern Georgia. He and his 20 year old pregnant wife set out to establish their home, and the man began the process of building what ends up becoming a beautiful, two story home. Next, he built a barn to house the grain, cattle, and crops they grew on their acre of property. Wanting to keep their animals free to roam, the headstrong husband built a fence around the border of their property. As he built their property, the couple built their family. They had three wonderful children., and one by one, they all married and moved to establish their own families the same way their parents did. As time passes and the couple slowly aged, the the work load became too much for them to bear, and the once seemingly impervious husband, fell off the roof of the barn he had built. Overwhelmed and unable to hire a farm hand, the wife who became a widow couldn't keep up with the demands of farming, caring for the animals, cleaning her empty two story home, and keeping up with the maintenance issues that the barn and house had. Old and alone, this unfortunate woman had to make a difficult choice: was she to let the bank take the home she's had so many fond memories in? Should she struggle bring the aging property back to life and risk her own health? Or does she move in with her oldest son and daughter in law? As tears ran down her face, she decided to begin packing up as much as she could; heirlooms, pictures, china plates that belonged to her mother; everything she could. Then, in a flash, the house was empty. Decades passed. Weeds and bushes surrounding this once gem of a home grew uncontrollably, and each structure continued to be worn away. Eventually, the house was accidentally discovered. The hiker who stumbled across it made a few phone calls, and the property that was once a diamond in the rough, had a purpose again.

    If this story were real, the wood used to make the home, the barn, and the fence would be recycled and used to make a reclaimed wood floor. Some may say that a piece of history is being destroyed, but let me ask a question: would you rather that a 100 year old, abandoned home be torn down and the remnants be turned into mulch? Or would you rather have a piece of history be shared with another family? That is, in essence, what happens when a reclaimed floor is manufactured. You might see the nail holes that were made when one particular piece of wood you're walking on was used to build a beam in someone's factory; or if the floor was made from wine barrels, you might see the name of the bottling company on one of the wood planks. Each piece of wood tells it's own story, making the floor that each plank combines to create, truly unique. This isn't tree bulldozing and factory manufacturing. It's restoring a painting. You might be able to copy the picture of that painting and put it anywhere you want, but it takes time and care to restore something to it's original beauty. In a similar way, reclaimed wood floors will have the characteristics of what it was originally used for, and they will be restored to their original beauty.  I'm not "green fanatic," but to me, this sounds like a great idea.

    While this process may not be the final answer to the world's pollution problems, re-using materials that have already been harvested definitely helps. If we can recycle paper, plastic, and glass, we can recycle wood. I would like to pose a question, however: who in the world had the idea to break down and re-use wood homes and barns to make a flooring product? I mean honestly, who saw an old barn and thought to themselves, "Now that would look just perfect if it were on my floor at home,"? Whoever it was must have to love their craft and be an expert in the flooring or recycling industry; not to mention have a fantastic group of people working with them to help accomplish that fantastic feat, no matter what industry they are in.

   After all is said and done, the choice, as always, is up to you. Wall to Wall isn't a company that forces anything down anyone's throat, let alone the idea of recycling; but we do recycle here. The carpet and padding we remove from our customers homes is given to a company that recycles them; utilizing their materials and transforming them into other products, instead of letting them sit in a landfill. So if you're looking for "green" material, look no further; and if you're not, we have the right material for you too. Located in Altamonte Springs, we're here to help you get what you're looking for; so stop into Wall to Wall Flooring Specialists, Inc, "Your one stop flooring center."

 

"Who wants a (back) splash?"

Added on August 21, 2015 by admin

    If you remember centuries back into the 60's, you might recall a trend that started to take America by storm; the back splash. While I'm not old enough to remember who made the first one or where the idea came from, I do know this: back splashes are making waves in people's homes all over the country, and throughout the world. Why would such a thing be so popular? I can honestly say with great assurance, I can ask somebody....

    Just because I live in a certain level of ignorance to the reason for a particular item's popularity, doesn't mean that I have nothing to say on the matter; in fact, it's just the opposite. Back splashes are a nice touch to any home. Whether you have a standard mosaic or a funky design, back splashes can help give off the feel that you're looking for in your home; bringing everything together to the last detail. While the name itself gives the definition of what a back splash really is and how it should be used, don't underestimate the appeal these can have on even an already up-beat home. A "splash" of color in the background of it's setting, back splashes are selling like hotcakes. You can consider a yellow tie on a grey suit a back splash, or white wall tires on an 1960's corvette. Back splashes just add to the appeal of something by giving off a little character. 

    Primarily found in kitchens and used as borders in bathroom showers, back splashes help to create a unique feel to any home they are installed in. There are different companies that produce quality products, and while many products are similar, there are enough options to choose from, that even picky people will have a hard time sorting through them. There are variations between natural stone and glass, natural stone with glass and stainless steel (which is my favorite), all stone mosaics, colored glass mosaics, subway tiles, subway tiles with beveled edge back splashes, brick back splashes (these would look great in a rustic, country style kitchen), and many more to choose from. When did back splashes start making waves? I couldn't tell you; but they are popular, they are going to be around for a while, and we have a variety to choose from.

    When it comes to an intense project like a kitchen or bathroom renovation, most rarely want to add anything new into the mix; and when somebody does start to mention an addition, the first thing that I think of is, "Great. How much is this going to cost me?" While a not unreasonable reaction, it may be a bit narrow minded. Think about it, how often do you re-tile your bathroom, or replace old cabinets? It happens only a very few times in our lives; and thankfully so; but if you're spending the money more an overhaul like a kitchen or bathroom, back splashes aren't going to break the bank, and they'll look beautiful.

    Lastly, I'd just like to say that if you've already got a bathroom you love, leave it alone. If you have a kitchen that is perfect the way it is, don't try to fix what isn't broken; but if you think that there's room for more, give Wall to Wall a call. We'll work with you to the best of our ability. We'll show you what we have, let you look around, and if we can help you in your search for that missing piece in your home, we will. So swing into our showroom and take a look around. Wall to Wall, "Your one stop flooring center."

 

Linoleum Vs. Luxury Vinyl

Added on August 14, 2015 by admin

    Have you seen it? Where has it gone? Why is it missing? Will we ever see it again?  I'm talking of course, about linoleum flooring. While flooring remodels are really moving these days, the use of linoleum seems to be a fading flooring option. It can still be found if searched for, and is being used in a few unexpected (and some expected) places, but luxury vinyl flooring is taking it's place very quickly.

    While linoleum is made of natural ingredients such as linseed oil, tree resin, wood, cork, and limestone, vinyl flooring is made of PVC resin, plasticizers (which is just a fancy way of saying liquids or gases that are used to increase a materials ability to be formed), and a few other materials that are dull to read about and boring to explain. While both products are man-made, one is made combining natural material and the other made using man made material. Which is better? That is solely a matter of opinion; however what I can tell you is this: linoleum is getting harder and harder to find in retail stores, and luxury vinyl products are flooding the market, and there are a few good reasons for that fact. 

    Most places that I find linoleum being used in are apartment complexes, commercial buildings, and new homes; which is funny to me since linoleum is a pretty difficult material to find for the average shopper. Luxury Vinyl, however, is being used in just about every setting, and can be found easily. Luxury Vinyl is being used in hospitals due to the ease of sanitation and comfort, in gymnasiums due to it's durability, in kitchens and bathrooms due to it's water resistance and design options, in commercial buildings due to it's resilience and competitive pricing, and is being used in any room in any home due to all of the above mentioned characteristics. Luxury Vinyl is taking floors all over America by storm.

    Before you think I'm making linoleum out to be the bad guy, there are some pro's and con's to linoleum that you should know. The first positive characteristic to linoleum is that it's durable. Play area's or high traffic area's, commercial building's; these are all good places for linoleum. Second, linoleum can be made to look like just about any other flooring material. Third, it's easy to clean. Fourth, it's affordable. Fifth, linoleum is fairly comfortable to walk on. Sixth, it's water and spill resistant. Lastly, linoleum can be installed fairly easily if you're looking to install it yourself. Unfortunately, there are a few discrepancies to these advantages. 

    First, as durable as linoleum is, if it tears in any given spot, the entire floor space that sheet covers must be replaced. Second, linoleum can be made to look like any other flooring material; the only thing is that no matter how close the picture looks to real hardwood floors or stone tiles, linoleum will still look like linoleum. Cleaning linoleum is simple, so there is  no draw back concerning that aspect; all you really need is hot water, and mild dish soap that doesn't have a lot of chemicals that can damage the floor. If you want to be more environmentally friendly, use white or apple cider vinegar and hot water. Next, although linoleum is affordable, there are other products on the market that are cost effective as well; also, while linoleum is comfy, have you ever actually walked on a luxury vinyl product? It's got to be one of the softest materials I've ever stepped foot on. Lastly, while linoleum is waterproof, it will still eventually begin to peel off the floor when installed in a bathroom, just because of repeated exposure to steam. Linoleum isn't a bad product, it's just not a great one either. 

    Luxury vinyl isn't a perfect flooring material, but it is perfect for a lot of people. First, luxury vinyl is extremely durable. While you might not want to install it in an ice skating rink, it's a durable flooring option that can withstand heavy traffic, and is good for not only residential purposes, but for commercial use as well. Second, luxury vinyl can be made to look like most flooring materials available; and the difference between luxury vinyl and linoleum is this aspect is that luxury vinyl, really does look just like the product it's made to look like. It's hard to tell the difference between real stone tile and luxury vinyl engineered to mimic stone tile without walking on them both (and the best part is; luxury vinyl is softer!). Next, luxury vinyl is as easy to clean as linoleum; use a neutral floor cleaner, a damp mop, and have at it; it's simple and painless. Finally, luxury vinyl is completely waterproof. Water will not damage it. Water won't get in-between any cracks and destroy your sub-floor when properly installed by our team; your floors won't peel off of the floor due to steam from a shower. When you're having luxury vinyl, you can put it almost anywhere. The only place I would deter you from is outside where the sun can discolor it. Again, this is not a flawless material; we just like it a lot.

    In fairness, there are a few con's. First, it's not as cheap as linoleum; but cheap is rarely ever the best solution for a long term flooring issue. Depending on the manufacturer and the wear layer, prices will vary; however, when you pay a little more, you get what you pay for. Karndean, Free Form, and Anderson are just a few manufacturers that have beautiful products. Second, you'll need furniture pads to make sure that when you're moving furniture, you don't gouge or lift the tile.  While this may not happen at all, (a tile popping up is supremely easy to fix, by the way) it's better to be safe than sorry. Even if you don't have or want luxury vinyl, furniture pads are always a good idea. Lastly, have a good day, because there are no more con's.

    If you're looking for linoleum, we can help you find it. If you're looking for luxury vinyl, we have it! So whatever you motivation or flooring desire, make the stop into, "Your one stop flooring center;" you'll be glad you did. 

 

Tile just got a whole lot bigger

Added on August 11, 2015 by admin

    Let's face it, what's modern today will be boring tomorrow, and what's boring tomorrow will be vintage soon after. Trends are always revolving; but there is one trend flooding the market that I think is going to stick around for a long time. It seems like the smallest idea that ends up making a big difference; it's simply big tiles. Not impressed? Keep reading and you might become interested.

    Average tile size in most homes in the U.S. are 12 x 12; and while that was the standard for years, too much tile can make even an open space seem cluttered, and consumers across the country have noticed. In today's market, you'll find tile in 12 x 24, 16 x 16, 18 x 18, 20 x 20, and even 24 x 24 inch measurements; leaving the average 12 x 12 shrinking in the background. 

    If you have the decreasingly average 12 x 12 tile flooring, you might have noticed how busy your floors may seem, even if they are simple, beautiful, and clean. This is due to the fact that the more tile you have in any given room, the more grout lines that room will have. The more grout lines a room has, the more enclosed that room will seem. In short, you will have a nice size room that seems a little small; and by today's demand for more open spaces, tile companies are beginning to produce tile collections that will help create that open space feel. That open space concept is the main drive for flooring companies to produce large tiles; the other benefits are just perks. However, you might not way to put a massive tile in a small laundry room or tiny bathroom; it won't look proportional; so be conscious of where you want these tiles installed. Also, beware of using a contrasting grout color. It will make the room you're having tile installed in look like a live in checkerboard.

    An additional way to encourage that open space appearance is to have tile installed in a diamond pattern. This will encourage that open feeling as you walk down a hall that will seem longer, as it opens into a great room that seems more spacious; due to not only the size of each tile, but also due to the angle that each tile lays. There is another caution I would like to bring up; if you're looking to visually enlarge your space with large floor tiles, you need to find a collection that has very little pattern to it. If there is too much pattern on the tile collection you've chosen, these visual effects you're trying to accomplish won't work. 

    The last benefit of having large tiles in your home that I'd like to point out, is that large floor tiles are easier to clean. There aren't as many joints (which are only the spaces between each tile) to fill with grout, leaving less grout lines to clean. This creates more of an even flow all around the room. I would stress to not compromise your floor's structural integrity by asking for small grout lines with large tiles. This will only cause cracked tiles and will be a waste of money. Also, since we're talking about cleanliness,you should know that Wall to Wall installers only use Laticrete Permacolor Stain Free Grout. This is a grout which is made with Microban, a product that prevents the growth of bacteria, mold, and mildew, eliminating the major causes odors and stains. In short, having larger floor tiles; particularly installed by Wall to Wall; will not only look cleaner for a longer period of time due to less grout lines, but will stay cleaner longer because the grout we use won't let bacteria grow in your home, or stain your floors.

    After all is said and done, preferring large or small floor tiles is solely a matter of preference. It doesn't matter what I like, because everyone has their own opinion; and while I may have a floor that I love, my visiting family may not think the same way. The point I'm getting to is, if you're getting new flooring, make sure what you pick out is something that you like. So take a break out of your day, and swing into, "Your one stop flooring center."

 

Southern Hospitality

Added on July 30, 2015 by admin

    I've been thinking about character lately. Does Wall to Wall have any? What does it look like if we do? Who says we do, and why can you trust their word? SHOULD you trust their word? How can you, or anyone for that matter, trust a testimonial by a complete stranger? Well, just like the first time you took your first steps as a child, you just have to start to move forward; staggering legs and all.  

    Wall to Wall Flooring Specialists, Inc. is a company that's been in business for almost 13 years now. Our owners are flooring installers that worked in this industry for DECADES before they ever thought of entering into their own operation. We have the knowledge and experience you need to make your flooring renovation possible.  Once hidden in Apopka, now we're located in a bright space that's easy to spot from the road; and that in itself should tell you a little about us. We've been doing business with excellence and customer satisfaction to the point that we've been able to move to an ideal location, right off of West State Road 436 in Altamonte Springs, just a mile and a half East of I-4.

    We have a larger warehouse now; which means we can buy more product in bulk, at a lower cost, and cut our prices to the purchasing public. We now offer kitchen and bathroom renovations now. We're doing more flooring demolition projects through our sister company, Wall to Wall Flooring Removal and Rental Services. We've been thriving; and because of that, we're in the process of putting in place one more addition in showroom that will help solidify Wall to Wall in our surrounding communities. Find out what that is in the next few weeks!

    Now, I understand that just because we have a bigger space doesn't make us any better than any other flooring company out there. We strive to do things right at Wall to Wall, even if that means taking a loss just to save our integrity. I've seen this firsthand here. Our owners are men of their word; and that's something that's hard to find. If you wonder where Southern hospitality went in this state, swing in and talk to somebody; you'll find it here at Wall to Wall. We treat our customers the way that we would want to be treated, simply because that's who we are; so expect good things when you walk through our front doors. 

    Like every other small business owner, we need to make a profit, "...if you don't work, you don't eat;'' however, what I've noticed that is unlike other small businesses, we won't bash our competition. There are other good flooring companies out there; but there's only one Wall to Wall Flooring Specialists, Inc. We lower our prices to generate business, not raise them to make a quick buck; and doing business like that, for as long as we've been open, has gone a long way for us. We strive to generate a good reputation that will keep our doors open, customers happy, and contractors working; and we've been blessed in doing so.

    So if you're ever in the market for a flooring renovation, keep us in mind. We'd love to help you love your home, from Wall to Wall. 

 

Armstrong in the Vinyl game...

Added on July 24, 2015 by admin

    Since I've worked in the flooring industry, I've been able to notice different flooring company's strong points. Mirage makes a great hardwood product that is hard to beat. Mohawk is really moving to the forefront of the carpet industry with their revolutionary Smartstrand Forever Clean product. Happy Floors has several fantastic collections of full body porcelain tiles; and now Armstrong is putting in place a pretty impressive luxury vinyl product.
 
    I've written on Luxury Vinyl before, so I'll quickly review about the qualities of luxury vinyl products. First, luxury vinyl is 100% waterproof. Once fitted together, luxury vinyl doesn't let any water get through the cracks, simply because there are no cracks for any water to seep through. Second, luxury vinyl is extremely durable. It's soft enough to be comfortable, and can absorb a dumbbell being dropped on it without being permanently damaged. Third, it's hands down the easiest flooring product in the world to install. If you don't believe it, ask any flooring installer to see for yourself. Lastly, whether you want to install it yourself or have us do it for you, it's one of the least expensive flooring products to install. Armstrong's line of luxury vinyl has all of these characteristics, but it has a few more that make their product stand out.
 
    We sell a lot of luxury vinyl here at Wall to Wall. People love it, so we supply it; yet in all the vinyl fever, Armstrong has seemed to present a product that stands out. While most luxury vinyl floors are only perimeter glued and loose laid on the floor, Armstrong's luxury vinyl products are peel and stick; meaning you peel off the back of each piece, and stick it to the floor; so you don't need a trowel or perimeter glue. Some people will love this, and some people will shy away because they don't want to peel up one piece repeatedly if they make a mistake during installation; however, Armstrong's peel and stick loose lay luxury vinyl is made to be pulled up and put back in place repeatedly, if need be. The only factor that can really effect this product is whether the floor it's being laid on is clean or not. Sweep, mop, swiffer; whatever works for you; just make sure that the surface area the vinyl is being laid on is clean before install.
 
    The other factor that has made Armstrong's luxury vinyl stand out to me are the different styles they have. Like everyone, I have my own flooring preferences. I don't like too many options, and I don't care for designs that are too "busy," but this stuff looks fantastic. The styles are much different than what I've seen from other vinyl manufacturers, and even though every brand will have it's own particular selling point, this is a strong one for Armstrong; their product is stunning. Browsing images of their products online may give you an idea of their styles, but it just won't do them justice; and while I can tell you about my favorites all day long (like their Countryside Oak Gunstock that looks too real to believe, or their Concrete Structure Gotham City that has all the right color combinations for a modern space), unless you come in and see these products for yourself, you're not going to believe how great, or how real, a vinyl product can really look.
 
    Whether you're in the area or not, you're going to want to see these products. They're durable, beautiful, practical, and can go in just about any room you want; so don't put off your flooring project until you have some extra time; make the time for what's important. Let us help you get the ball rolling. Swing into, "Your one stop flooring center," today.

 

Love that new carpet smell...

Added on July 8, 2015 by admin

    A few months ago, I wrote about Mohawk Smartstrand Forever Clean Carpet. It's one of the best carpet's on today's market, and the facts to back that claim up are pretty solid. It's for this reason that, for the sake of this blog, assume that all the carpet mentioned is a Mohawk product.

    Have you ever entered a home with newly laid carpet? I wasn't lying in the title of this blog: I really do love that new carpet smell. It's just pleasant. You know that smell as soon as you enter a room where it's been laid; and as much as I love that smell, I love the FEEL of new carpet as well. It just feels good underfoot; soft and as cool as the temperature in your home, you can even take a nap on it and not be bothered. If you have Mohawk's memory foam underlying pad, it feels even better. Not only do you get the feel of Mohawks plush carpet underfoot, you have the chance to feel like your feet are walking on clouds every day. 

    Here at Wall to Wall, we stock several different Carpet Brands; Shaw, Beaulieu of America, Dixie Home, and Marshland to name a few, and most are making a product engineered the same way Mohawk's Smartstrand Forever Clean is, and they're doing a pretty great job; still, Mohawk seems to be taking the lead in the carpet industry. Their carpet has fantastic warranties, affordability, and stain resistance properties that have become revolutionary. Mohawk means business, and so do we. That's why we stock 6 colors of Mohawk's Smartstrand Forever Clean Carpet. It's hard to find a great deal on a great product, yet we offer just that, right here in Altamonte Springs.

    In our showroom, we are always selling hardwood, tile, carpet, laminate, vinyl, and even cork flooring. They are great products at great prices; and every flooring product has it's pro's and con's, but sometimes carpet is overlooked. We all go through a period where we want a "fresh" look. The fact is, after the current hardwood flooring trends have passed from "trendy" to "outdated," and tile has gone from "classic" to "antique,"  carpet will be the one constant lining the halls and bedrooms of newly constructed homes. 

    If your family is made up of a baby that's learning to walk, and a spouse who tends to drop things, chances are, tile is not for you. You might want to think about carpet. If you have a dog that likes to use the bathroom indoors, laminate probably isn't for you. If you really need a new floor and can't decide on the tile that looks like wood or the fashionable wood that new buyers may hate if you want to sell your home down the road, don't underestimate a good, soft carpet. 

    Our stock Mohawk Smartstrand Forever Clean is durable, plush, stain RESISTANT (that's right; not even bleach can discolor it. If you don't believe me, check out some videos on youtube.com and see for yourself!), it cleans 3x more efficiently than standard carpet, won't matt as easily as standard carpet, has 4 lifetime warranties, 3, 25 year warranties and is an affordable alternative to polyester or nylon carpets that won't last half as long. Mohawk Smartstrand Forever Clean is a product that is hard to beat; and it's for these reasons that it's our stock, go to carpet.

    When the store closes and our customers have gone home, you're the ones that have to be happy with the product that we provide. So check your options. Ask yourself what's going to be practical for your everyday life. Find something that you like. When you've done all that, swing into, "Your one stop flooring center."

 

  • Items Per Page: 
  • 1 All
  • Page: