Is wood grain tile the spork of flooring?

Is it tile or is it wood?  Can’t tell?  Well, let your feet do the talking, if it’s cold underfoot, it’s tile, no matter who dresses the topside up to look like wood grain.  I call this the “spork” of flooring because it just doesn’t fit right.  It’s not a smooth, polished, warm hardwood that will last for decades with minimal care.  It is definitely not wood.  It is a cold, functional, utilitarian style floor cover that works best in high moisture places or throughout the entire state of Florida.  But this wood grain tile is not a neat, clean, presentable and efficient tile either.  It makes a room sound hollow with shallow echoes.  What really dropped my jaw was when I saw this tile listed recently as a perk in a $3.4 M penthouse.  Can this really be the new trend of flooring?  It seems to me it is more likely a choice that a homeowner makes who cannot decide to go through the hassle of installing solid hardwood but yet wants a sort of grainy style look in an easy maintenance tile.

I couldn’t tear this fake flooring out fast enough if I saw it in a penthouse.  I will be the first to admit that I am not a fan at all of the industrial style finishes in some upscale loft kitchens I’ve seen downtown.  But a loft condo downtown has a more individual style, more of a statement of single and proud of it, so let’s steel coat the surfaces and industrialize the concrete countertops because I am large and in charge!  I’d prefer plain concrete floors over this spork tile.  If we’re going industrial style, let’s go all the way industrial!

But why would you want your private home kitchen to resemble a cold, unwelcoming, elementary school cafeteria anyway?  The kitchen, in a private home, is a center of activity, a friendly gathering place, a work place and a family spot that should be highlighted with great lighting, not harsh fluorescent bulbs that make your guests glow in the dark.  Hardwood floors that are rich and well kept, pair beautifully with buttery soft cabinets and a classic solid surface countertop that is both functional and delightful at the same time.  Recessed lighting, new appliances, and an upgraded back splash with glass accent tile, now that is where you would gain the feel of a cozy, welcoming gathering place.

Find your new happy gathering place in the Fox Valley!


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