Today’s trend for home decorating has raised interest in wood accents for the home. The styles for built-ins, trim and flooring have veered sleek modern looks to the natural, classic warmth of wood. Hardwood floors are more appreciated than ever and add great value to a house. But for something with a little extra flair, people often consider an exotic hardwood floor.
Some of the Choices
There are many types of exotic hardwood floor materials from all over the world. Australian Cypress offers a cream color combined with knots for a soft rustic look. A bonus is the hardness and variation of light and dark shades. If the hardness of the wood is important, ironwood is one of the hardest. Many homeowners who love this wood buy it for its rich brown beauty and plain grain.
A truly warm exotic hardwood floor is Brazilian cherry, brown with tones ranging from orange to red. It is good for use in a room with other types of wood for contrast. Another great colorful exotic hardwood floor is Purple Heart which, as its name suggests, is know for its deep purple color. It also has a lovely straight grain and a fine to medium texture. If an entire floor of purple wood is too flashy, Purple Heart can be used as a border for a less exotic hardwood floor like oak, maple or ash and would add an unusual touch to an inlay design.
Teak is a beautiful wood often used for accent pieces like carved boxes and can be found in fine boats because its oils make it resist rot. It offers a yellowish brown color that can be used as an accent with more traditional woods. Zebra wood and ebony also make good accents. Zebra wood has black and light tan stripes that might make an extremely exotic hardwood floor. Ebony is deep black and like teak, it can be used to dress up oak, maple or ash.
Not all exotic hardwood floor materials are bank-breakers. Bamboo has the color and durability of a great exotic hardwood floor but is less expensive. Although used as wood, bamboo is a fibrous grass grown in bamboo forests in China. Strips cut from bamboo are glued in layers. This may sound odd, but many hardwood materials are made this way. Bamboo is laminated keeping it from expanding or contracting and making it easier to care for.
So when you’re considering a new floor, think about making it an exotic hardwood floor for style, punch and durability, too.