Choosing and Installing an Engineered Hardwood Floor

Edmonton-based Interior Design Principal, Vanessa Warawa from VW Design

When it comes to choosing and installing a Timeless engineered hardwood floor, customers often rely on the professional expertise of an Interior Designer. So here on the Timeless blog, we thought you might enjoy meeting some of these talented designers, and getting a glimpse into how they select, install and use Timeless floors.  

Vanessa Warawa Photo

Edmonton-based Interior Design Principal, Vanessa Warawa

Vanessa has been a designer for 16 years, and founded her own firm, VW Design, in 2015. VW offers a full range of interior design services, both residential and commercial.  

“My career actually started out in commercial design,” says Vanessa, “But now we’re about 90% residential.” The company’s online portfolio reveals a stunning array of modern and distinct residences with highly creative colour palettes and textures.

“I see design as a very personal and intuitive process,” she says, “I really get to know my clients to lead them to their own unique vision. I then love to present something that goes way beyond their expectations.”

A Designer’s Outlook on Hardwood Flooring Quality

Vanessa has been using Timeless engineered hardwood floors since well before she started her business, at least 9 years now. Why? “The colour selection is awesome. The product quality is consistent, and the price is always competitive. I like that they have different grades to meet different price points.”

Although it may surprise some readers, interior designers look at far more than just the aesthetic appearance when choosing a hardwood floor. “I can tell the product quality from looking at the finish and construction,” she explains. “We hard-specify product so our contractors will install products noted on our specification. If the product wasn’t up to standards, our contractors would have issues installing a product they are not able to warranty. But by using Timeless, we have never had any complaints about flooring quality.”

Vanessa explains that her clients often ask about the ability to refinish or re-stain hardwood floors over time.  In other words, is the top layer thick enough to withstand sanding-down and refinishing if the homeowners want to change their look down the road?

“I always explain this to clients, so they are aware. For custom-build clients, these homes are usually life-time residences, so I usually recommend selecting more premium planks with a thicker wear layer. But I’ll still be comfortable recommending thinner Timeless hardwoods for entry-level infill homes, for example, because this just means the buyer can afford a hardwood where otherwise it would be out of their price range.“

And as our team at Treeco (founders of Timeless) can attest – even if a particular Timeless floor can’t be refinished, it is still engineered and warrantied to last as-is for 25 years.  

Where Design Trends are Heading

Since Timeless works with designers to continually our colours, species and styles, we also took the opportunity to ask Vanessa a few questions about where she sees design trends going since the pandemic.

As one might guess, the pandemic has had quite an effect on how people are approaching home design, especially given the new work-from-home normalization. 

Says Vanessa, “Everything used to be very modern. Now we’re doing some more transitional looks – with more details. Clients are thinking about the use of spaces for office, entertainment, study purposes. We’re even installing swimming pools – outdoor and indoor, right here in Alberta! We’re seeing people gravitate to warmer woods, more detailed moldings, and more cozy, homey looks.  So as designers, we’re giving them the best of both modern and traditional.”

In addition to this, Vanessa explains that the insanity of high housing prices has also impacted buyers’ selections. “Keeping budgets in check, whether for new builds or renovations, has been difficult. We appreciate that Timeless has a wide range of options at accessible price points.”

Trends in Engineered Hardwood Flooring

So how do these trends affect tastes in engineered wood flooring? Here are some of the most desired looks that VW is seeing now:

  • Wide planks
  • White oaks, but stained in warmer colours
  • Some knots to add character, but still mostly clean (knotless) looks

The team at Treeco is also watching these trends. We are anticipating that as more environmentally conscious consumers buy homes, there may be more openness to charactered (knotty) floors that allow for more efficient use of hardwood trees. All good for the planet!

Coming Soon on the Timeless Wood Floors Blog

Vanessa alluded to some wonderful upcoming projects that her team is now working on. We’ll be featuring these and other exciting projects – complete with fantastic photos, coming soon!