Flooring can add beauty and style to your home. From beautiful, natural hardwood to soft luxurious carpet, a floor provides the backdrop for the rest of your room. You floor also gets a lot of wear and tear. Pets, guests, family, kids – your carpet literally gets walked all over every day. Choosing a floor that can take the abuse is important in having the beautiful backdrop that lets your home shine. When you’re choosing a floor, arm yourself with this information and you won’t be disappointed with the beautiful floors you’ll have for many years to come.
In our first installment of Beautiful & Durable, we’ll take a look at carpet. Carpet accounts for the majority of flooring purchased and is a great option for almost any space. But, please don’t choose carpet for your bathroom!
Carpet is great for bedrooms and living spaces, carpet is soft and warm underfoot. It comes in more colors so you’re bound to find the perfect hue. There are many types of carpet – some are better for high traffic areas and some offer unbelievable soft luxury. Choosing the right one depends on your space and your lifestyle.
The first thing you’ll want to consider is the type of fiber your carpet is made from. There are four basic types of carpet fibers.
Durable, versatile, wear-resistant and easy to clean, nylon is a great fiber choice for all areas of the home. Nylon is also soft to the touch and some new nylon yarns can be exceptionally soft. Nylon is not inherently stain-resistant, however, most nylon carpets are treated to protect against spills and stains.
Exceptionally soft, polyester also has natural stain resistant qualities. Polyester is not as resilient as nylon but thanks to advancements in yarn processing, polyester carpets now perform much better than older polyester carpets.
Polypropylene, while not as resilient as nylon or polyester will not absorb water making it more stain and fade resistant. Polypropylene is usually found in loop pile carpets where the lack of resiliency is not an issue.
For a truly natural fiber option, wool carpets offer many of the great features of man-made fibers. It is hypoallergenic, stain-resistant and even flame retardant. Wool carpets tend to be more expensive than other carpets with man-made fibers.
Once you've determined the fiber type that is right for your lifestyle, you’ll want to consider the type of texture that fits your space. There are four basic textures when it comes to carpet:
Berber is a looped carpet tufted with thick yarn. It often has random specks of color in contrast to a base hue. It is great for any areas that must endure lots of traffic, such and entryways and hallways. This floor covering has a rich, textured feel, while maintaining an informal, casual look.
A Berber look like this one is great for an active household. Photo: Bigelow Carpet from Carpet One.
Loop carpet has yarns that are looped and uncut on the carpet surface. The pile height can vary from low, tightly constructed to a more luxurious high-level pile. Loop carpet has strength and soil hiding capabilities. This style is ideal for heavy traffic areas. Loop carpet can take lots of abuse and is great for use in kids’ rooms and family rooms. The shadings in this carpet will resist traffic patterns while making colors appear deeper and richer. That means, you won’t have to vacuum every time your carpet gets walked on.
This Loop carpet from Innovia Touch will hide traffic patterns and it’s super soft. Photo: Innovia Touch from Carpet One
Cut carpet consists of yarns that are cut at the ends. The soft feel of cut carpet makes it a perfect choice for the most comfortable areas of your home — bedrooms, living rooms and family rooms. There are five basic styles of cut pile carpet: Velvet, Saxony, Frieze, Shag, and Cable, each provide a different look and texture. The primary difference among these styles is the amount of twist in the yarns that will ultimately influence the carpet’s durability. Plush saxonies are used in formal settings whereas textured plushes are less formal and help hide footprints and vacuum marks. There are a wide variety of looks and colors in cut style carpets. When you’re looking for durability, remember - the tighter the twist level, the better the carpet will perform.
A frieze can make your home comfortable and works great in casual spaces. Photo: Resista from Carpet One
A more plush option gives your floors a sleeker look. Bonus, this carpet is stain resistant. Photo: Relax, it’s…Lees from Carpet One
CUT & LOOP
As the name suggests, cut & loop carpet has a combination of high cut tufts and lower loops in a variety of sculptured patterns. Cut-loop carpets offer good performance but are slightly less durable than loop carpets. Tough and durable, cut & loop carpets can be used in any place that gets a lot of activity. These carpets are great at adding a dimension of texture that creates an enhanced plush profile and camouflages traffic patterning.
This carpet has a cut and loop wave pattern that remains a neutral backdrop but gives your floor a subtle pattern that stays beautiful. Photo: Azzaro from Bigelow.
Armed with this information, you can choose a carpet that fits with your lifestyle and remains beautiful for years to come.
What texture and fiber combination is right for your home?