When we first were going to redo the floors, we wanted to stain them dark, but after learning that our floors are maple that plan changed. Maple is a very difficult wood to stain because it is so hard and dense. Stain works when the particles settle into the pours and crevices of a wood and if the particles can't find any of those, it is wiped away. So when you try to stain maple it often comes out looking very streaked and the uniform look that you would want is almost impossible to achieve. We were pretty bummed about that but then decided "It is what it is, I guess we will have light floors". BUT, now that we get to pick all new flooring, we were able to pick the dark color we had originally wanted!
We stopped at 4 different flooring stores. We found a few that we liked but I didn't LOVE either of them. Since this flooring is going to be on our entire main floor I really wanted it to be something that I couldn't live without. Of course there were some that I loved but they were $5+ a square foot but when you're ballin' on a budget, that is NOT feasible. We went to the last store of the day and low and behold THERE IT WAS. We picked out our flooring, loaded up all 1000 lbs of it, and headed home. I have to say, I was pretty impressed at our decision making skills. The entire process maybe took us 2.5 hours, I know people who have taken over 2.5 weeks to pick out their flooring. *giving myself a pat on the back*
This is what we chose:
Store: Lumber Liquidators
Brand: Kensington Manor
Color: Sandy Hills Hickory
12mm handscraped laminate with pad attached
Our living room and dining room now look like an obstacle course but it's starting to feel like it's coming together!