Unique, durable, and sustainable, reclaimed flooring offers homeowners the opportunity for a truly distinctive look and feel. This one-of-a-kind floor offers a timeless look highlighting American history. The wood was sourced from an old barn in West Virginia built more than 100 years ago and was given new life in a Michigan home by the dedicated team at 1 Wood Floors based in Livonia, Michigan.
The oak for the project was carefully reclaimed and remilled by Wellborn + Wright, leaving the original sawn face untouched. Wellborn + Wright’s products are reclaimed from all over the East Coast – from turn-of-the-century barns in western Pennsylvania, to textile mills in Boston, and down to centuries old lumber mills in West Virginia. The salvaged wood is saved from landfills and revitalized through the utilization of detail-oriented processing techniques. The wood for this project was factory finished with natural oil produced by Rubio Monocoat.
“We are seeing a lot more reclaimed flooring and a lot of different styles in the wood itself: the color, the width, and the texture,” says 1 Wood Floors owner, Edmond Malaski. “A long time ago, it would have been more about the border, inlay, a diagonal, or whatever the customer wanted to do to make the job unique. But now it seems to be more about the materials themselves being unique. The best part of it is that these materials were made in the USA and are more than 100 years old.”
The Details Make the Design
After delivery, the materials sat on-site for about two weeks while the wood was properly acclimated. Then, installer Arron Kida began the tedious process of establishing the pattern for the floor.
“When the wood arrives, it comes in bundles of very long boards because it’s older wood,” says Malaski. “You have to determine the pattern yourself because it’s all random. It’s a little bit of artwork. Working with the materials, blending things together, and mixing it in the right patterns takes a lot of talent.”
One of the unique aspects of reclaimed materials is that what could be considered a flaw in other materials can add character to the floor. “One of the treads had a nice big split in it. I thought it was the most beautiful piece out of the whole shipment,” says Malaski. “So I called the homeowner to verify that he was okay with that piece. He was, so we did some epoxy fill on it and used it. ”
In fact, one of Malaski’s favorite parts of the install is minding the details. One of the finishing elements for this project was wrought iron vent covers. “They were drop-in vents, but they were very thick, sturdy, and stable material. Instead of just dropping them in, Arron took a router and set it down, and routed it out and dropped it flush into the floor,” he shared. “It’s those little details that make everything come together.”
Malaski also credits success to Todd Muth of CTM Custom Stairs, who handled building the steps for this project.
The client was extremely pleased with the result; so much so that he’s interested in expanding that look throughout his home.
“He has quite a big house. On this job, we did the master bedroom, the hallway, the steps down into the master bath, and the steps up to the master bedroom,” says Malaski.” “He has quite a bit more flooring there, and he said he wished he did the rest of his house. So, hopefully, that project will be coming up soon.”
Wood: Wellborn + Wright | Saws: Festool | Nailers: Powernail | Adhesive: Bona | Fastener: Powernail | Moisture Meter: Wagner Meters | Finish: Rubio Monocoat
Entries in this category include all types of restorations, repairs, or refinishes, in either a residential or commercial application. Applications can include job site finished, manufacturer finished, solid or engineered wood flooring.
Stacy Brown is the Editor/Publisher of Hardwood Floors Magazine, the official magazine of the National Wood Flooring Association. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.