The history of parquet has many centuries, and it begins in medieval Europe of the 13th century. In modern interiors, parquet flooring is still relevant, but thanks to the variety of types, materials, designs and a wide range of prices, choosing it has become a rather difficult task. In this article we will tell you about all the parquet options available on the market today.
What it is?
Parquet is a floor covering that consists of rectangular planks. For its manufacture, different types of natural wood are used. Modern parquet manufacturers offer a variety of types - from individual strips of parquet, from which the pattern is formed, to ready-made, originally textured segments.
Advantages and disadvantages
Parquet has a number of advantages over other types of flooring. However, it also has disadvantages. Let's consider them in more detail.
- The main advantages of a parquet floor are a natural pattern that repeats the pattern of a tree, and environmental friendliness (it has no chemical smell, on the contrary, it smells like natural wood, is pleasant to the touch and safe for health).
- Parquet board, unlike laminate, is rather thick, therefore it provides very good noise and heat insulation. But the thickness of the parquet must be taken into account if it spreads into an apartment with doors already installed.
- Requires special care and washing with special products. It is negatively affected by temperature extremes, high humidity and chemical detergents. Therefore, it is not very recommended for the floor in the kitchen (it can swell) or in the cold hallway (gaps can form between the boards).
- A parquet board is easily scratched or pushed through by heavy furniture.
- Parquet is an expensive material.
There are many types of parquet, so before choosing one, you need to understand their features.
Panel parquet is a two-layer board-shield, from which the floor is laid out in a square. Due to the presence of two layers, it is resistant to temperature and humidity changes. It's easy to lay it down. An important advantage is the many variations of patterns. Among the shortcomings, one can note the high price and low wear resistance.
A type of panelboard parquet is a block parquet made of individual wooden planks assembled into a finished square of a larger size with a varnish coating. The checkers pattern can be easily assembled from such blocks.
Piece type represents separate planks that are attached to each other with grooves and spikes. Such parquet is distinguished by high strength and reliability, since solid wood without veins is used for production. An important advantage is the low price and the variety of patterns that can be folded from individual boards. However, its installation is a rather painstaking work that requires skill and accuracy. Insulation under the cover is also required.
Mosaic, or typesetting the variant is a set of separate planks of different shades and shapes, folded into a small square. This type of flooring will be quite expensive, but it is easier to install, looks rich and comes in many different patterns.
The finished planks, from which the artistic pattern is created, can be laid in squares, rhombuses, etc.
Modular parquet used in cases where the flooring becomes an important component of the design of the room. Each square panel of such parquet is a complex design pattern. Different types of wood are used for the production of each shield. At the same time, it is important that they match in density, structure, moisture and heat resistance, etc.
Large country houses and mansions are characterized by elite parquet made of natural wood, eco-parquet with a luxurious texture and a very high price. Solid parquet is a linear solid wood plank. It can be single-lane, two- and three-lane, as well as straight (saw) or curved. Such parquet looks unusual and, as it were, repeats the natural shapes of the tree trunk. The individual planks are used to form the floor covering row by row. It is durable and durable.
Among the shortcomings, one can note the high price and the inability to make patterns. Externally, a single-strip parquet board is similar, but cheaper than a solid board, which consists of several glued layers of wood coated with varnish or oil.
The strongest and most reliable, as well as wear-resistant type of parquet flooring is a rare end parquet… The block of such a parquet is a square made from the end cut of a tree. Thanks to this, the floor covering can withstand heavy loads. Due to the high price, this type of parquet floor is extremely rare today and, as a rule, only as individual inserts into the pattern.
The palace type has a unique appearance and decoration. It is made of high quality planks of various shapes, from which a unique composition is laid out.
Garden parquet used to cover areas, lawns and paths outside the home. For its manufacture, a wood-polymer composite is used, which holds the temperature well, does not overheat in the sun and does not slip in rain and frost. It has a characteristic parquet texture, which makes the paths look beautiful and well-groomed.
Industrial or industrial parquet made from the remnants of the material of various woodworking, furniture, parquet factories and factories. Thanks to this, it has a low price, but retains all the advantages of a natural wood coating. It's pretty easy to install. It can be made of oak, merbau, ash and other types of wood.
Brushed type has a pronounced texture of natural wood. It is obtained as a result of a special brushing process, when a soft layer of fibers is removed from the surface of the wood, due to which the effect of "artificial aging" is created.
Castle parquet made of bamboo wood using environmentally friendly production technology. It got its name thanks to the fastening in two locks. On the front side, each plank has a groove or ridge, with which they are fastened to each other. The bamboo flooring is environmentally friendly (eco-parquet) thanks to a special production technology.
Bamboo flooring is smooth and hard and also cool in summer and warm enough in winter due to the low thermal conductivity of bamboo wood.
Parquet quality, durability, heat and water resistance, as well as color depend on the material for its production.
The front side of the parquet is always made of hard or soft wood. To give natural wood more hardness and heat resistance, it is subjected to heat treatment. Thermal wood flooring (thermo ash, thermo oak and others) has one drawback - it fades over time in the light. It is used quite often for the production of the top layer of parquet boards.
The most popular wood species in Russia for the production of parquet boards and solid wood are oak and ash.This is a fairly durable species, the flooring of which looks very noble and sophisticated due to the pronounced texture of the wood. Oak has a light beige tint, bog oak is darker, ash is honey yellowish. Birch parquet as well as natural larch parquet have a light color. Karelian birch is harder and more wear-resistant than ordinary birch.
Beech is easy to process, strong and durable. The beech parquet has a honey tint.
Maple parquet is a light, almost white flooring. But maple tends to acquire a yellowish, honey tint over time.
Bamboo has a number of advantages over other types of wood, since it is quite hard and moisture resistant, has a very high wear resistance and does not require special care.
Mahogany is a dark wood. The floor covering from it has a high price tag, but is in great demand due to its quality and noble appearance.
Walnut parquet has a warm brown tint. European as well as American walnut are very hard wood species, therefore they are in high demand. This is an expensive material, it is moisture resistant and it is difficult to damage it mechanically.
Popular types of wood for the production of parquet floors are also cherry, hornbeam, chestnut, wenge, lapacho, mahogany and others.
If for the production of parquet flooring, as well as piece parquet, one species of wood is used, then for mosaic, artistic, modular parquet and parquet boards, several species are needed at once, which coincide in terms of thermal, moisture, and wear resistance.
For the production of parquet boards, valuable types of wood are used only for the top layer. It is varnished in several layers. The bottom layer is veneer.
Modern parquet is made using not only valuable wood species, but also from inexpensive natural (for example, leather parquet) and artificial materials. Artificial vinyl flooring, which imitates the appearance of natural, has several important advantages. It consists of almost 80% PVC and therefore has very good moisture resistance, wear resistance and elasticity, is not susceptible to chemicals and insects.
An alternative to traditional parquet flooring is cork parquet. For its manufacture, the bark of a cork tree is used. As a rule, such a floor covering has several layers. The first layer is a cork backing, followed by fiberboard, then a cork plate. A decorative lacquered wood veneer is placed on top of the cork layer, which gives the cork parquet a more elegant look.
The advantage of a cork floor is good shock absorption (this is especially important for people with musculoskeletal problems), thermal and sound insulation, environmental friendliness and low price. The use of artificial materials for the flooring of the local area is also justified. For the production of garden parquet, plastic (WPC) is often used, since it is least susceptible to moisture, is stable and has excellent heat resistance.
Depending on the density of the wood from which the board is made, a distinction is made between high or low density parquet. Dark brown woods are most often dense. Pink wood (cherry, pear, alder and others) has a lower density.
The grade is determined by the method of sawing the wood from which the parquet is made.
Consider the following varieties:
- "Select" - high quality expensive parquet, produced by radial sawing. No knots or sapwood remains on the board, the wood has a uniform color, only slight mineral deposits are possible.
- "Radial" - also a high quality variety with an even color and no sapwood, however, the percentage of mineral deposition on the surface is higher and can reach 60%.
- The next quality cut is "Standard", distinguished by high quality, it has no knots and sapwood, a slight difference in shades is possible. Parquet of this type is obtained using mixed sawing.
Parquet "Natural" also belongs to the variety of mixed sawing, with a characteristic presence of sapwood and knots in small quantities, as well as a natural difference in shades.
Less quality, but affordable is Rustic parquet… It is obtained as a result of mixed sawing, it has not only knots and sapwood on the surface, but also small cracks, as well as different natural shades of wood on the surface
The length of a parquet board is usually 2 meters. The thickness of the planks can vary from 0.5 to 8 mm. The average plank thickness is usually 4 mm, this is the best and most common option. The width of the board can also vary and is usually no more than 20 cm.
Despite the fact that the most common is parquet in light and dark brown shades, today there are various methods of finishing parquet, allowing you to change the original color of the wood and obtain colored parquet. So, there are:
Light. Light shades include beige parquet flooring from wood species such as bamboo, birch, pine, larch, ash, maple or oak. Oak parquet is the most popular in Russia because of its strength. It has a light brown tint. Beige parquet is made from walnut, merbau, turbidity, lapacho and others
Dark. Bog oak will be very dark in color. The same dark shade and wenge wood - the color of coffee. It is quite expensive. The dark flooring is made from walnut and mahogany
Colored. Alder, cherry, pear and beech flooring will have a pinkish tint. Among the yellow woods, olive, teak and iroko (flounder) are in high demand. Dissia, yarra, jatoba, paduk brought from Asia and Africa have red color of wood
Wood can be bleached, brushed or varnished. The whitewashed parquet will be white. Brushed, or artificially aged, will have a strongly pronounced wood texture due to the special removal of the upper soft layer with special brushes. Industrial parquet from antique oak is also produced by brushing. This does not affect the shade of the wood, but the color of the board becomes more pronounced, embossed. After brushing, the parquet is usually oiled rather than varnished in order to preserve the natural relief of the parquet.
Lacquering wood, on the other hand, allows it to give it a glossy shine and a more modern look.
The parquet board has many different patterns. Depending on the size of the room, the texture of the parquet board and the tasks that the flooring solves (expand or narrow the space, give the interior a festive or elegant look, etc.), it is worth stopping at one or another version of the pattern. Drawings can also be combined. Let's consider the options in more detail.
- "Breakup", or deck pattern - a common classic pattern, suitable for any room size and interior. Each board is fixed with grooves and ridges on both sides, the boards are laid out parallel to each other. Variations: straight and diagonal, straight deck, double or triple, with offset dies.
- "Herringbone". This pattern can also be called classic. Planks are laid out at an angle to each other. There are options: diagonal, straight, double tree, with a transverse insert, French with sawed corners, etc.
- Geometric pattern of squares ("checkers") or from trapeziums, allows you to divide the floor into separate zones.It can be either a regular square of 4-5 dies, or framed (of several shades of wood). If the room is small, then it is recommended to use one shade of wood with an unexpressed texture. Also, to create a geometric pattern, you can use plates of different shapes (for example, squares, rectangles, trapezoids and rhombuses), combining them to your liking and creating a unique pattern.
- Parquet from pentamino figures (five square dice joined together) can also be laid out in a variety of ways. It takes a lot of work to lay out this pattern, but it looks very sophisticated, especially if you use several different types of wood.
Braided pattern created from 2-3 shades of parquet boards. This pattern looks elegant and neat. May have a more massive look if more dies are used in one segment. Due to the presence of separate decorative inserts in the pattern (square dies), the floor looks interesting and elegant
"Rhombuses" - an unusual graphic pattern, quite catchy, therefore it is recommended to use it not for the entire space of the room, but for individual areas as a border or, conversely, to center the room
Today the Russian parquet market offers products from European, Asian and domestic manufacturers. Some foreign firms have their factories in Russia, and vice versa, factories abroad supply products for Russian brands (for example, the Russian company Grunwald, which sells parquet made in Germany). The most famous parquet producing countries are Sweden, Finland, Italy, Poland, Russia.
Swedish firms Kahrs and Tarkett are widely known in our country. Kahrs offers a wide range of quality parquet flooring from inexpensive to luxury models. Tarkett produces parquet of exclusive quality, including exotic wood species (mahogany, merabu, etc.). Elite parquet boards are produced by the well-known Austrian company Scheucher
Finnish parquet (Upofloor) - these are quality samples at affordable prices. The company offers products from traditional as well as exotic woods such as wenge, jatoba, merbau, iroko, etc. The Polish company Barlinek also produces a variety of products, parquet flooring with exclusive patterns at very affordable prices. Eco Parquet is another Polish company that produces affordable parquet from traditional and exotic wood species,
Italian manufacturers parquet more than others have succeeded in the field of design. In their assortment you can find very stylish designer parquet, attractive both from a high-quality and aesthetic point of view
Due to their reasonable price and good quality, they are in great demand in our country. Russian and Belarusian parquet. Famous in Russia is the German-Russian company Alpenholz, which produces the highest quality parquet boards at an affordable price
High quality parquet flooring is also produced by the company Panaget (France)with nearly 100 years of experience in the wood floor industry
When choosing parquet for a house or apartment, be sure to take into account the general style of the interior. The parquet must match it, otherwise it will look out of place. In addition, parquet flooring itself plays a huge role in creating the atmosphere of the home, it attracts attention and is able to perfectly highlight the best and transform the interior.
- For interior in style rustic or country, as well as vintage, parquet flooring without patterns with brushed is perfect. Scuffed and muted flooring will be more appropriate here than ever.
- For a Scandinavian interior parquet is everything or almost everything. Typical is the predominantly light parquet made from solid oak, ash, beech and other light species.
- For classics, as well as the English style, honey shades of parquet with patterns or without them are characteristic. Mosaic, panel board, massive parquet or parquet board made of oak or (rarely) other species of rich shades look great in a classic style interior. Quite often, oak or mahogany parquet is chosen for classics.
- For loft style parquet flooring in dark brown or black with scuffs is perfect. As a rule, these are solid boards or linear parquet.
Tips for choosing an apartment
Choosing the right parquet flooring for your apartment is not as easy as it sounds.
This is easier if you follow a few helpful tips:
When choosing parquet, be sure to consider the general style and color scheme of the room. It is necessary to think over the design concept in advance. The parquet floor must blend harmoniously with the interior
- For an apartment that is too sunny, it is better to choose a lighter color of the floor covering so that the dust on the floor is not so noticeable. The light floor is also able to visually increase the size of the room.
- If the apartment has several small rooms, then it is recommended to use a single parquet pattern, otherwise the rooms will seem even smaller.
- The color of the doors should be several shades darker than the floors.
- Consider the size and shape of the room. A room with modular parquet seems to be more square, and with a parquet in a narrow strip, on the contrary, it is elongated. The smaller the size of the room, the smaller the parquet plank should be. For a small room, it is best to use block parquet lined with patterns. For a large room - an array.
- For balconies and outdoor areas, it is better to choose heat-resistant parquet or artificial parquet board (laminate), it is less sensitive to temperature extremes and humidity. It is better to use a two-part adhesive rather than a one-part adhesive, as it not only guarantees a high level of strength, but also is not susceptible to mold and bacteria.
Keep in mind that parquet flooring changes color over time. Dark floors become slightly lighter, while lighter ones become more golden
Natural wood parquet flooring requires careful handling and special care. In order for a parquet floor to serve for more than one year and retain its original appearance for a long time, it is important to care for it correctly.
It is important to maintain the temperature in a room with a parquet floor at least 15 and not more than 25 degrees. In winter, too dry air in a heated room can lead to narrowing of the parquet and the formation of gaps between strips or panels. Therefore, it is necessary to maintain a humidity level of 45-60% in the apartment.
It is also necessary to take care of lacquered parquet. Firstly, it is better to do wet cleaning no earlier than two weeks after the varnish has dried. Furniture should have soft casters that will not damage the shiny varnished surface.
It is also better to wash the floors 1-2 times a week, not more often. Water-based varnish is even more demanding on the level of moisture. It is necessary to ensure that the humidity in the room is no higher than 55 percent, otherwise the parquet will begin to swell.
If, instead of varnish, the parquet is covered with oil, then it also needs to be renewed from time to time. Grouting the old oil locally, only in the place where the oil surface needs to be refreshed and a new layer of oil is applied every few years. Wax and products based on it also do an excellent job of protecting parquet. However, it should be borne in mind that you cannot use a steam cleaner to clean waxed parquet floors. In the case of lacquered surfaces, it is possible to clean them with a steam cleaner at minimum mode.
Also, to protect the tree from the sun, other harmful effects of the environment and to make the floor shine, it is rubbed with wax or mastic.
If the parquet is scratched, it is necessary to remove the scratches immediately so that moisture does not penetrate through them.From time to time it is necessary to apply a new layer of varnish (after cleaning the surface from the remnants of the old one) in order to remove scratches and eliminate the possibility of decay and damage to the parquet.
Cleaning at home should be done only with special cleaning agents for parquet flooring. They allow you to wash without streaks from dirt and stains, do not harm varnished surfaces. Surface stains can also be removed with grout or wax.
If the parquet flooring loses color in the sun, carpet or furniture should be placed in this place to create shade. After a while, the place on the parquet, closed from the sun, will return to its former appearance.
Surface stains must be removed carefully using ammonia-free products.
The classic herringbone pattern also looks great in modern interiors. The choice of several types of wood, dark and light, in this case makes the flooring even more sophisticated.
Beautiful design and expensive natural wood are the features of art parquet. This type of parquet floor looks most advantageous in spacious rooms.
The parquet flooring in the classic interior looks luxurious and stylish. Proper care of an expensive parquet floor will keep its surface in its best shape for more than a dozen years.
An example of a minimalist bedroom. Dark parquet looks most advantageous in combination with light, almost white walls.
Light parquet flooring allows you to visually enlarge compact spaces. An example of the winning use of parquet flooring in the renovated "stalinkas".
About which parquet is better to choose and the types of design, see the next video.