All You Ever Needed To Know About Modern Parquet
In recent years, the parquet style of flooring has become increasingly popular. Browse any popular interior design and architecture magazine or site, and chances are you will come across one. Beautifully intricate and visually striking, parquet flooring makes a sweeping statement in any residential or commercial space.
What is a parquet floor?
Traditionally, parquet flooring was simply real wood flooring laid out in complex geometric patterns. The most popular are the ones you would have heard of already – Herringbone and Chevron. Over time, there have been more abstract forms of flooring added into the mix, but these two dominate the market.
Did you know that parquet flooring has a long, rich history? Some styles, like Herringbone, have been around since the Roman Empire due to its structural integrity. But parquet flooring as we know it today, has its origins elsewhere.
The term ‘parquet’ means ‘a small compartment’ in French and this type of flooring was made famous in 16th century France. It was initially used to replace cumbersome stone or marble flooring. Skilled craftsmen would lay wooden panels by interlocking them in abstract patterns. The patterns became so popular with the aristocracy that King Louis XIV replaced the marble floors in the Palace of Versailles with parquet flooring. Parquet flooring soon became symbolic of luxury and wealth.
Thankfully, the innovations in luxury vinyl flooring have made these once-royal floors accessible to everyone.
The modern parquet arrives
Modern parquet is a far cry from its predecessor in its use and application in several distinct ways. Present-day manufacturing techniques in luxury vinyl especially, offers consumers a wider range of options and motifs.
But, what sets modern vinyl parquet apart from the traditional one?
Traditionally, parquet floors only came in limited variations of timber. With luxury vinyl though, you have a wider range of colours, patterns and textures to choose from. Plus, you also have the option of tiles to play around with to make dramatic patterns.
Thanks to the factory finishing, you can have your parquet in a variety of colours and effects, with ultra-realistic shades that earlier generations could only have dreamed of. Pro-Tek™, in fact, offers a choice of 12 modern tones and classic oak hues to add a touch of luxury to any space.
Years ago, a Herringbone floor was only available in one size. Today, you have medium and small sized planks too to make it more dynamic and creative.
Parquet floors of yore were only available unfinished, which meant that once it was installed, it needed to be sanded and oiled on site. As you can imagine, this was a labour-intensive, expensive and time-consuming affair. Vinyl parquet floors, on the other hand, are simply clicked into place without even the need to engage additional help. You can just go down the DIY route. Yes, that easy.
Up until recently, parquet floors were seen as being old-fashioned and fussy, meant only for historical, Victorian buildings. However, modern vinyl parquet has revived interest in this type of flooring by simply giving it modern variations and making it much easier to maintain. In fact, people are using vinyl parquet in areas it would never have been used before – including kitchens and even bathrooms.
Traditional parquet floors needed skilled artisans to install them and the wood used would need constant maintenance. This made them an expensive choice, which ensured they remained accessible only to an elite few. However, with modern vinyl, you can enjoy the timeless beauty of parquet at an incredibly affordable cost. You can scratch out the high maintenance costs too that are typically associated with hardwood parquet. Vinyl floors need the most basic sweeping and cleaning to keep them going. Which makes it so perfect for our modern, hurried lives.
Pro-Tek™ Herringbone planks are not prone to damage like real wood and offer 100% waterproof protection from moisture and spillages. With five robust layers added into the parquet planks, you can rest assured that your floor will serve you well for years. In fact, Pro-Tek™ offers a Lifetime Residential Warranty and 20 year Commercial Warranty on all parquet floors.
The most well-known parquet styles
Since a parquet floor is created using inlaid panels of wood, the possibilities are virtually endless. Owing to its dramatic appeal and creative vibe, the parquet has never really gone out of fashion. Traditional patterns like the Herringbone were very popular in the 19th and early 20th centuries, while the Basket Weave and Checkerboard found favour in the 1940s and 50s. In the 1970s, Chevron captured the imagination. Today, we have the ingenious crafting of modern vinyl parquet to ensure that this type of flooring adapts to changing tastes. Let’s take a brief look at the various types:
The Herringbone design is created using wood panels of equal length, cut into rectangles. The rectangles are then placed in a zig-zag pattern to create a fluid, yet structurally stable pattern.
While this pattern is very similar to Herringbone, there is one distinct difference. Herringbone planks are cut straight, giving them a more ‘W’ shape when laid out. However, the ends of the rectangular planks in a Chevron are cut at a 45 degree angle, giving them a more ‘V’ shape when installed.
This intricate parquet flooring is also known as ‘Versailles Parquetry’, since it first made waves in the grand Palace of Versailles – where you can still admire it today. Like the name suggests, this pattern mimics the weave of a rattan basket. It is a beautiful interplay of square planks and rectangular planks that help achieve this elaborate pattern.
Here, a brickwork type of effect is achieved by placing small rows of wooden panels in rows of two or four to form square ‘bricks’. Each brick is then placed perpendicular to the brick that’s next to it to create a simple and effortless parquet floor.
Add dimension with parquet.
As you’ve seen, parquet flooring when done right, can be the centrepiece of any room, transforming it completely. If you are interested in giving your space a parquet makeover, we would be more than happy to help.