TED TODD FLOORING
Medium Wood Flooring
Medium wood flooring is the name that many of us use for floors with a mid-tone, which is a common situation where neither dark nor light fits the description, as sometimes the colour and tone of a natural product such as wood can be hard to define.
These medium colours are ones that we often find in hardwood floors that have aged over time. The medium brown appears because most woods oxidize in their natural habitat, which turns light hardwoods darker.
At Ted Todd we design and make some of the finest engineered medium hardwood floors and solid medium wood flooring in a vast array of tones which you could describe as medium. So, whether you’re seeking planks, herringbones, or more extravagant parquets and panels, you’re sure to fall upon a medium wood floor that fits your specifications.
What are Medium Wood Floors?
It is not possible to talk about medium, mid tone or aged wood floors without talking about fuming.
Fuming is a process that accelerates the natural aging of wood and in doing so it transforms wood to deep brown tones by reacting with the timber’s tannins. These tannins mainly occur in oak, but some other woods have them too.
The darkest form of this process is called double fuming, which is where the wood turns dark all the way through to the core, not just at surface level. This takes over three months to complete with the result being a strong warm medium brown colour, which can be sanded down for years to come, maintaining the ‘just-purchased’ look.
We also make what we call single fumed (or just fumed) floors where the fuming gives a much lighter brown tone of wood, but the fuming is much shallower.
One thing to remember about fuming is that it only reacts with tannins and where there are no tannins the wood will not turn dark – the sap wood is the new growth on the outside of the tree, this is still hardwood, but its lack of tannins means that it will stay light when fumed. This mismatching can be a great feature in a floor as it is natural, packed with character and quite striking, however, if you don’t like much colour variation you will either need to drop these boards out before you install the floor or choose a fumed floor without sap in it.
Heat Treated Medium Hardwood Floors
Medium wood floors can also be achieved with heat treating. This is a complex treatment where you cook the wood at a high temperature allowing it to slowly crisp to a brown, mid-tone wood; this treatment also breaks the structure of the wood which increases its stability.
Just like fuming, different degrees of heat treatment results in a range of light to dark tones. Heat treating transforms the wood’s colour throughout, meaning that you can restore it over and over again without losing the natural medium shaded look that your project was built around.
We find this to be one of the greatest aspects of real wood floors, as you can develop treatments and processes that are innovative and industrious, adding to the wonder the natural world has produced.
Natural Medium Hardwood Floors
Medium toned woods can also be the natural tone of the wood, with no treatment needed. This is especially the case for walnuts and some tropical woods. American black walnut flooring is a deep brown tone. It has a subtle grain pattern and if you look carefully you can see an array of other colours hidden within the wood, including soft greens, blues and yellows.
Other naturally medium hardwood floors include tajibo, high-quality wood that looks similar to walnut, but has a tighter grain structure; and morado, a mid-century feel hardwood that contains a wonderful array of medium to dark colours. We source both of these woods from a FSC certified forest in south America, having worked with the family who owns the forest for almost two decades – they have a brilliant appreciation for sustainable forest management and it is pleasure to work with them.
You should also consider woods with texture and undulations as they work effortlessly with medium coloured flooring. One great example of this is Husk from our Warehouse collection. This is a floor that transforms a space. Every piece of the floor, in plank, herringbone and chevron, has been hand-worked to achieve an undulating texture.
Handmade Medium Wood Flooring
Woodworks is our specialist division. They handmake wood floors that cannot be created in a standard flooring factory, using a delicate handcrafting technique they have developed throughout the last decades.
From our Cheshire workshops, our Woodworks team make some fantastic medium wood floors in a range of species. Abbot is particularly a standout medium wood floor as it has a soft brown tone, almost feeling bleached, whilst retaining the medium colour. Granary is also interesting as it has subtle saw marks running through the floor, adding texture and a three-dimensional feel to your project. Finally, Manor House has a distressed texture and medium colour that can work well in restoration as well as in a modern build. All these floors are finished with a burnished hardwax oil to give it a rich and durable patina.
What are the best rooms to install Medium Wood Floors?
Sitting between light and dark, medium coloured floors are highly versatile and a popular choice for many an occasion.
Being warm and welcoming, they work very well in traditional and period homes, pairing with the brown colors that often feature throughout. With these comforting characteristics, medium wood flooring has a strong effect on residential areas too, making rooms feel safe and secure.
Use lighter medium colours if you want to make a space expand and feel larger, and if you need a space to feel that bit cosier and close-knit, a darker medium wood floor will do the trick – making this colour of floor ideal for a project of every size.
Kitchens and other high-traffic home areas, such as hallways, will benefit from the easy maintenance of a medium brown floor, whilst commercially, you’ll be sure to see these tonal variations in pubs, bars, hotels and more.
What are the benefits of Medium Coloured Wood Flooring?
Medium oak flooring, and mid-tone floors of all species for that matter, have the colossal advantage of aging gracefully, often looking better and better as the years roll by. They gain a rich patina over time, something that we at Ted Todd love to celebrate, and do so often with our reclaimed and antique Woodworks by Ted Todd floors.
Unlike lighter coloured floors, medium coloured ones don’t end up looking ‘scruffy’ over time, making them much easier to maintain. The colour hides wear and tear better so they always look fantastic even having been at the heart of a project for a lifetime. Just be sure to care for your floor using the correct Care System.
What are the advantages of Medium Oak Flooring over alternatives like laminate flooring?
Medium and mid tone oak floors have big benefits over their synthetic cousins.
All work hard to replicate wood’s natural-world look few even get close. Tiles for example look odd as they are just not long enough and can be difficult to keep clean in comparison.
Vinyl or LVT struggle too when compared to real wood. Contrary to the claims of being easy to care for, it is still prone to scratching and unfortunately you cannot restore this floor; once the damage appears, you have to simply live with it, or replace it. Oak wood flooring on the other hand can be restored many times over and this why it is a ‘buy once’ investment that can easily last a lifetime with the correct care. For more information on caring for your wood flooring, visit our Advice Hub.
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