Hand Scraped Laminate Flooring
Hand-scraped flooring changes the character of the room from ordinary to rustically aged. Character marks, contouring, and highlighting with dark staining essentially compound to form a unique style, one seldom consistent from one plank to the next. Beyond the appearance, hand-scraped products have an added dimension: texture. The amalgamation of these facets encourages those in the space to touch the surface of the floor, to feel its undulating contours and roughness.
As a result of these unusual characteristics, hand-scraped flooring has grown in popularity. Practically all species can be found distressed, and even laminate brands, such as Quick-Step, are trying their hand at it. Quick-Step's Country line of hand-scraped laminate flooring features 10 styles, all based on domestic species maple, walnut, oak, and hickory. In addition to replicating the look of hardwood, Quick-Step's laminated hand-scraped flooring incorporate the style of distressing techniques, including the texture resulting from contouring, hints of age, and dark stain highlights.
Not made with actual hardwood, laminate flooring, hand-scraped or not, has various benefits and drawbacks. The product itself consists of a particleboard core with a photographic image – of hand-scraped hardwood, in this case – on top. A melamine or cellulose-resin coating is added on top for strength, and a backing layer acts as a moisture barrier. While the wear layer guards against stains and scratches, the backing layer prevents the floor from warping. To get as close of a look to natural hardwood as possible, brands, like Quick-Step and others, may incorporate texture.
For the homeowner looking for a durable product, laminate flooring is durable, scratch- and fade-resistant, and easy to maintain and has, on average, a 20-year lifespan. Because it's a floating floor, many laminates are straightforward to install, involving a lock-and-fold or gluing method. Underlayment must be added underneath. On the other hand, laminate flooring, once installed, may have a hollow sound and, years down the line, cannot be refinished.