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Which colour floorboards will I choose?

I need some help! I’ve done this before and every time we get to the floorboard colour choice in the house I can’t decide. Why are there so many choices!?

My husband does like to weigh in on thisย decisionย (oh the horror, how dare he! *stomping my foot* haha!). He has a preference for dark floorboards whereas I don’t (well I could be swayed, but I’m not sure). I’m all about the practicality and how they look when they are NOT clean. I’m not too worried about scratches because we do look after them, but it’s how they look when dirty that is my main concern…

I don’t like floorboards that show every smudge when you stand back and the light catches them. I think the dark onesย seemย to show up more smudges?? (Yes, no?)

I don’t want them to overtake the house either. I want them to be subtle and fit in with every colour scheme (because you all know I like to paint and change things lots!). I’ve had a few houses over the years and have always put floorboards in, but have never really loved any of them. The only ones I have truly loved have been original cypress pine boards in a house we renovated – but it’s impossible to have these in my new house because we’re building on a slab and I’m not going to the expense of putting batons on the slab for floorboards…. so a floating floor will be it.

Help me choose!

I have a poll at the end of the photos. Just vote there, or leave me a comment to tell me why you would choose one colour over another.

Colour: Driftwood.

Colour: Classic Walnut.

Colour: American Oak.

Colour: Smoked and Limed.

Colour: Smoked and Black.

Colour: Brown Black.

Colour: Chocolate.

All photos were take from Royal Oak Floors.

Which colour floorboards would you choose?

My husband will be watching these votes today too! Ha!

Thank you! X



  1. Reply


    June 14, 2012

    Love the Driftwood. I’ve got vinyl planks (expensive ones) and they mark easily. Love to know where your sample came from.

  2. Reply


    June 14, 2012

    I LOVE the classic walnut, we had floorboards in a rental this colour, having only lived in houses that have tiles since, floorboards are SOOO simple to keep clean and hide smudges etc. I do like the driftwood as well but I guess it depends which way your furnishing go colourwise… the walnut colour complimented our colours really well because we had simple neutrals but if you have lots of colour in your house I personally think there might be a fight for attention going on… so driftwood….

    damn will have to retract my walnut vote ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Reply

    Anna (My Design Ethos)

    June 14, 2012

    I voted for the Smoked and Black because I think it will be the most versatile and classic for your style of house. I’m deciding on timber-look laminates for my house and I’m thinking of a limewashed or whitewashed look. Love the style of white floors, but isn’t always the most classic look!

  4. Reply


    June 14, 2012

    I am confused. How is this even a question? I would MARRY those driftwood floors. Honest. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Reply


      June 14, 2012


  5. Reply


    June 14, 2012

    I can’t believe so many people have voted for Walnut it is so orange and 80’s looking…I went for the brown black second last pic. It’s more funky. Have you seen the bamboo floors, apparently very strong etc. Sonia from Raine and Sage knows a bit about them I think… anyway I think if I redid floors I would consider Bamboo. xxx

  6. Reply


    June 14, 2012

    Please don’t go the Driftwood! They remind me of acid-washed jeans. Eewww! ๐Ÿ™‚ The Chocolate is awesome – it looks fairly Matt finished, so it perhaps wouldn’t show up the dust/between-clean marks.

  7. Reply

    house painters naperville

    June 14, 2012

    There is definately a great deal to learn about this
    subject. I like all of the points you have made.

  8. Reply


    June 14, 2012

    I love darker colours but I think keeping them clean with 3 little boys might take away from time which could be better spent blogging/online shopping/redecorating. hehe. I would probably go a lighter one like the Driftwood.

  9. Reply

    Kylie P

    June 14, 2012

    I lived in a house with dark floorboards and as a result said I would never ever have them in a house. I was constantly cleaning them and even as I was cleaning them they still looked dirty or would show marks. I was a live in nanny at the time looking after 3 little boys….need I say anymore!!! My fav floorboards would have to be murray pine or equivalent as I think the colour is classic, timeless and goes with most decors…and most importantly…and dirt , marks or dust just blend on in with the tones. Have fun choosing!!!

  10. Reply


    June 14, 2012

    I am having the exact same dilemma! I think it all depends on the style of house you have, modern/ beach style homes suit driftwood which i love, but the chocolate would suit both modern and traditional style homes, and would be easier to change designs around. Nothing beats the beauty of real timber, but it is costly, and you can put down ply instead of batons with a slab. So my vote is chocolate, besides who doesnt love chocolate!
    As for cleaning it doesnt matter what you have with kids and pets its a constant never ending battle!

  11. Reply


    June 14, 2012

    Definetely driftwood or American oak but

  12. Reply


    January 18, 2013


    Im finding it hard to find Driftwood in stores… I live near Sydney (Wollongong). Does anyone know who sells Driftwood floors????

    If you could help it would be fab!


  13. Reply

    Nancy @ Express Flooring

    March 27, 2013

    I personally liked all of them but first one “Drift Wood” the most. I did give my vote above but not sure if it still needed. Good job with your blog here!!

  14. Reply


    August 28, 2013

    We are renovating at moment my partner wants dark but I don’t want because it will show up all the marks. Katrina what did you with in the end??

  15. Reply


    October 3, 2013

    Definitely the classic walnut if you have more neutral shades in your furniture, but go for the driftwood if you have more modern/chic/beachy furniture with lots of colours or ultra modern blacks etc. Mmmm…got me thinking…might go the classic walnut myself now!! I was thinking of doing 2 coats of limewash!

    Good luck!

  16. Reply


    March 10, 2015

    Im having this same debate, except I’m in a tiny apartment. What supplier did you go with?