2021 Wood Flooring Trends: 21 Trendy Flooring Ideas
Wood flooring is a classic choice, and even with the influx of wood-look flooring options, there will always be a market for solid hardwood and engineered wood flooring.
Now, when I say “classic” I do not mean boring. The latest wood flooring trends in 2021 are anything but boring.
As technology improves, wood competitors like laminate flooring, vinyl flooring, and tile are upping their game. Wood manufacturers have to keep things interesting, trendy, and up-to-date if they want to stay in the game.
In the past, wood has set the trend and other flooring manufacturers followed suit. However, these other floors are pushing the envelope and, in response, so is wood flooring. Let’s take a look at what wood flooring trends are happening in 2021.
2021 Trending Wood Flooring Types
You have so many options these days when it comes to wood flooring. Traditional wood flooring trends are out, and some new characters have joined the party.
You’ll notice a push for staying local and using recycled materials. Homeowners are starting to note the kinds of materials they’re using and choosing their flooring accordingly.
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Engineered hardwood flooring is the closest thing you can get to natural, solid hardwood. You know, other than actual solid hardwood. It has a thin hardwood veneer layer on top of man-made materials like plywood or fiberboard.
Engineered hardwood has a medium-density fiberboard (MDF) or high-density fiberboard (HDF) core which stabilizes and supports the plank. Even better, the layers of engineered wood planks include a premium attached underlayment making it extremely durable and perfect for all areas of the house.
Because it is technically real wood, engineered wood is extremely durable and offers looks in just about every trending wood look. With no extra finishing or refinishing required, engineered wood is out-of-the-box ready and, often, super easy to install yourself.
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Will the engineered wood flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Just how laminate and other solid hardwood alternatives continue to thrive, engineered wood flooring is no different! Expect to see engineered wood in homes for decades to come.
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Unique, durable, and green, with each plank telling a story, it’s no wonder reclaimed wood has taken off so quickly.
Reclaimed wood simply means taking old building materials and re-using them. Essentially, recycling. Reclaimed wood kills two birds with one stone, giving you something original that’s also environmentally responsible.
Often, reclaimed wood comes from decking, timbers, and barns. It has a naturally distressed look. Although, now that it has become so popular, you will find reclaimed wood from unique sources like wine barrels and more.
Will the reclaimed wood trend last in 2021 and beyond?
As reclaimed wood gains popularity, it becomes increasingly rare and difficult to find, only making it that much more popular.
This will be a trend that sticks around for a decade or so until something different comes along.
Eco-friendly, anti-fatigue, and resilient with a unique look, cork has been trending for years and, in 2021, we only expect to see more cork floors on the market and in the home.
Although we’re calling it trendy at the moment, cork is one of the oldest options on the flooring market. Durable, unique cork flooring has persevered the test of time and will likely only become more popular over the next decade.
Cork doesn’t quite look like a corkboard. It does, however, have a unique look that no other flooring has been able to replicate.
Homeowners love this special softer look that cork floors provide. In interior design, you’ll see a lot of balancing hard looks against soft. Cork gives you a beautiful soft appearance that you can easily contrast with harder lines in your other decor.
Will the cork flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
People are becoming increasingly interested in eco-friendly flooring, making both cork and bamboo flooring take off. Cork is pretty unique though, so it won’t appeal to everyone. I’d say that this flooring has probably peaked in popularity.
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The desire for homegrown and American manufactured products extends beyond traditional items to flooring and home decor. Some homeowners will pay top dollar for that title.
Essentially, purchasing American grown wood floors is equivalent to shopping local, which is huge right now. This means all of the material used in your flooring is locally-sourced and manufactured, right here in the USA. From the wood all the way down to the machines manufacturing each plank, your flooring will be as patriotic as you are.
As far as I can tell, American made floors are just getting started, and not leaving as long as the floors stay relevant with the other wood flooring trends.
Will the American-made and grown wood flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
I predict the demand for American-Made wood flooring will be steady going into the future as people focus on buying more things locally.
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2021 Wood Flooring Species Trends
Whether you notice or not, there are many different species of wood out there. In flooring, some of these species, in particular, are trending BIG in 2021.
In 2021, everyone is looking for beauty on a budget, which is where white oak wood flooring comes in.
White oak flooring is extremely attainable and stylish. It has personality and a cleaner grain than your typical hardwood, creating beautiful variation and a contemporary aesthetic.
Despite having the word “white” in the title, this species of wood has a versatile color palette, as it is actually darker than maple or red oak. So you can have the warmth of medium-toned wood flooring and the style of the white oak wood species.
Will the white oak wood trend last 2021 and beyond?
White oak seems to be a timeless wood species that has been around for a long time. Therefore, I do not see this species of wood going out of style any time soon.
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European White Oak Flooring
No, you’re not seeing double! While similar to white oak flooring, European white oak is making a splash in 2021 wood species trends.
The main differences between white oak and European white oak are the color undertones and the grain. European white oak has cooler color undertones such as gray, whereas white oak has a yellowish undertone. While the grain of each species is very clean, European oak’s grain is tighter than white oak. These differences create more modern wood flooring with European white oak.
Will the European white oak wood trend last 2021 and beyond?
European white oak will certainly be around for the next 15-20 years as the modern look is always in style. Beyond that, I think traditional white oak will take the cake in the long run.
2021 Wood Flooring Color Trends
In 2021, we’re moving toward the lighter end of the color spectrum. The lights are getting even more extreme with more white-washed, beachy looks.
But you’ll see some warmer, middle-of-the-road hardwood flooring ideas sneaking in, as well. Homeowners are increasingly using flooring to set the tone or feel of their home. That means, we need more options! Therefore, manufacturers are responding with more beautiful colors than ever before.
Here are the most popular wood floor colors to stay trendy in 2021.
“Oak Hardwood is still the king of kitchen flooring. The number one thing we are seeing is a throwback to lighter colored hardwood. Gone are the days of dark wood floors, now we are seeing lighter brown tones close to fruitwood. Our clients are asking for brown and gray tones over the reddish hues of the 1990s. With the popularity of modern and transitional styles in kitchen cabinets, adding textures to the floor like borders have come back in style with chevron and herringbone patterns being the two most popular.” – Bryan Sebring, Sebring Design
As more homeowners embrace the light, airy feel in their homes, you will see a huge resurgence in light wood floor colors. Blonde wood, in particular, can give you that light feel, while still feeling timeless.
With blonde wood, your decorating possibilities are endless. You can go for a chic, contemporary feel, or a rustic, homey vibe all without changing your floors. Typically, lighter wood colors go toward cooler tones, making it perfect to decorate with blues and grays.
Also, blonde wood makes any room feel larger and more open, especially if you use large planks.
For a blonde wood look, you’ll see bamboo, maple, white oak, and ash. While you can use a stain to get darker colors, with a light color it’s best to purchase a wood floor that is already blonde.
Will the blonde wood trend last in 2021 and beyond?
If you ask me, the blonde wood look will become the most popular wood floor color before you can even think about switching it up to something new. If you like them, go for it! They’ll be a hit for quite a while.
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Whitewashed Wood Floors
The whitewashed look is more of a west coast trend that is starting to spread across the country. As that relaxed, California vibe is spreading, so are the floors that come with it and whitewashed wood floor color is at the top of the list.
In addition to the California, easy-going look, whitewashed floors are also excellent for the now-trending farmhouse style homes, particularly in kitchens. It can also give that “beachy” feel or also an upscale contemporary feel, depending on the rest of your decor.
Now, when I say “whitewashed” I don’t mean a smooth, finished white wood. Whitewashed wood typically shows signs of wear with the darker wood peeking out from underneath.
Whitewash will make your home look brighter, bigger, and more relaxed, especially because lighter wood colors are trending toward cooler tones.
Will the white-washed wood trend last in 2021 and beyond?
If this trend lasts, it will be regional, at best. If you’re looking for light wood, I suggest going for a more versatile blonde wood instead.
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Just a step darker than trending blonde wood, warm, rich honey wood will be taking 2021 by storm.
Also known as copper-colored, honey wood floors are still light enough to give you many of the benefits of blonde wood, making your room look larger and more open. But, you also get that nice, rich warmth that comes from a slightly darker tone.
You see, medium wood often features warmer, natural tones, giving you the perfect compromise of lighter and darker wood. That’s why more and more people are adding honey wood swatches to their Pinterest boards.
Additionally, you can find honey wood floors in many popular wood species. Honey is a natural tone so it’s easy to find and it will look more realistic.
Both cool and warm tones will be trending across the wood flooring market in 2021 and, if you go the warm route, I would recommend a honey wood or wood look. Honey wood is not just a trend; it’s a color classic.
Will the honey wood trend last in 2021 and beyond?
I think this warm, cozy tone is going to be around for the long haul. While other trends may steal the spotlight from time to time, I believe that honey wood is going to remain classic and relevant for decades to come.
Gray flooring, particularly gray wood, has grown exponentially over the last decade and has quickly become the most popular trend, not just for flooring, but for homes in general.
In addition to looking chic and trendy, gray floors set the tone of a cool, contemporary home. They give you a neutral backdrop for decorating in virtually any color. Aquas, greens, bright bold colors or even black and white – they will all go with your sleek gray flooring.
Will the gray wood floor trend last in 2021 and beyond?
I say, if you like it, go for it – it’s not going anywhere soon! Gray will probably stay in style at least until it’s time for you to purchase new floors anyway.
In 2021, greige (gray + beige) is the new gray in terms of wood flooring color trends. This trend of brown, beige, and a touch of gray has taken off in the past year.
Greige has the minimalist feel of gray with the depth of beige. The greige wood floor color goes well with almost any other color in your home decor, complementing modern white looks or country browns and contrasting more bold colors of the home.
Greige floors work well for any room of the house. The unique color adds a fresh look to bedrooms and gives living rooms and entryways a feeling of luxury.
One thing is for sure, greige wood floors are a good choice if you’re looking for the best flooring for resale.
Will the greige wood floor trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Absolutely! Greige wood flooring is a hot new trend that I see taking off even more in the next decade as people look to simplify their lives and homes. It’s just that right blend of neutrality that people are looking for.
2021 Wood Flooring Texture Trends
As I mentioned above, high variation is in! Not just for colors but textures, as well. In 2021, you’ll see more and more floors where no two planks look the same, particularly with the handscraped wood flooring texture.
One of the more unique flooring textures is the handscraped look. This technique is used to make the floors look weathered while still looking stylish. With scrapes and knots, your floor will look like it has been in your home for a long time.
Essentially, the wood grain is more exposed, giving your floors a rustic look that still looks expensive and one-of-a-kind.
Because handscraped floors look truly finished, they are trendy not just with younger homeowners but with more established homeowners, as well. The handscraped wood floor trend is almost guaranteed to amp up your home value.
Will the handscraped wood trend last in 2021 and beyond?
This unique, individual, handcrafted look will stand the test of time. It looks expensive, and people love expensive.
**Note: Be careful purchasing handscraped wood floors. Many companies will call their floors hand scraped, but they really use a machine making each plank look similar and more uniform. It is less expensive for them, but it does not offer the same effect.
Similar to handscraped wood floors, homeowners are loving the weathered look of wirebrushed wood flooring textures. Wirebrushed wood floors provide more texture than your typical smooth hardwood floors. This trendy look adds character to your floor while still offering a finished look.
Wirebrushed floors are somewhat of a middle road between handscraped and distressed floors, as wirebrushed textures are more subdued and streamlined but still rustic and unique. While the wirebrushed floors are cool, if the trend towards imperfections and character continues, distressed and handscraped wood will likely have more to offer in both variety and character.
Will the wirebrushed wood trend last in 2021 and beyond?
I believe there will always be a market for this type of flooring. However, it will likely only be a hot and trendy choice for the next 5-7 years.
Distressed wood gives your flooring character, which creates a spectacle in every room it’s installed.
The entire idea behind distressed wood is that it looks like comes with a backstory. This makes your home cozier, and homey. Plus, the wood looks different than any other flooring.
Most of the time the distressing is done by machines in a factory. However, if you find real aged lumbar that has gone through distress and finish it for your home, that will look just as amazing.
Will the distressed wood trend last in 2021 and beyond?
I do believe distressed wood flooring will continue to be popular, particularly with younger generations. However, I don’t anticipate it will spread quite in the same way as handscraped and wirebrushed wood.
If you’re looking at long-term resale value, I would choose handscraped wood.
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2021 Wood Floor Finishing Trends
In 2021, you’ll continue to see flatter finishes. Shine is out as homeowners trend towards flat finishes, including the usual suspects and new(ish) oiled finishes.
Fumed or Smoked Finished Wood Floors
Now hitting the 2021 wood flooring scene, fumed wood! Fumed a.k.a “smoked” wood is wood that has been exposed to ammonia gas. The ammonia’s reaction with the natural tannins in the wood causes a darker finish, usually with a gray undertone.
This method of finish is particularly popular with white oak flooring as the ammonia brings out the color in the wood’s grain. Plus, fumed wood evenly colors each plank, providing a sleek, modern flooring.
A fumed or smoke finish will give your floors a vintage chic look. It’s simple and classic with its rich, yet subdued color.
Will the fumed-finished wood trend last in 2021 and beyond?
I predict the fume or smoke finished wood trend will stick around for years to come. Based on its evenly coated application, classic appearance, and gray undertones, you can’t go wrong with this trendy finish.
Satin Finished Wood Floors
A perfect compromise in between glossy and matte, a satin finish still gives you a little shine, however, it’s muted enough to hide dirt and imperfections rather than highlight them the way gloss does.
Satin finishes are typically 40% lustrous, which means on a shiny floor scale of 1-10, they get about a 4. For the last few years, satin finishes have been the most popular among homeowners.
A satin finish will still make your floors shine; it’s just not super shiny. It’s mellow, subdued.
Will the satin-finished wood trend last in 2021 and beyond?
The great thing about this middle-of-the-road option is you can be almost certain that this finish will never go out of style. I believe trends will go more and more towards matte finishes as the years go on, but eventually, that trend will change and we will be moving back towards the glossier looks.
This means satin finishes will stay current through all of that, making them the safest choice for the longest life of your floor.
Matte Finished Wood Floors
Although satin has been the most popular finish for the last few years, I predict matte will steal that title sometime over the next 5-7 years.
There is a misconception that matte floors look dull or flat. I don’t think that’s the case at all.
Matte floors make your house look contemporary and eye-catching. Of course, a poor quality floor can look very dull with a matte finish, but a high-quality wood floor will look gorgeous.
Will the matte-finished wood trend last in 2021 and beyond?
At first, I didn’t think matte floors would last longer than the next decade. However, matte is still trending up and I think this trend could last the lifetime of your floor.
Site Finished Wood Floors
When you want the ultimate control over your style, site finished wood floors are the way to go. With this method, raw hardwood is initially installed, then sanded and refinished after the fact.
Maybe this sounds a little backward to you, but self-finished wood gives you a more consistent and professional look than pre-finished wood. Factory-finished planks are treated individually, which can lead to color differences along the edge, giving your floor a slightly streaky look.
When you site finish your floor, you get to choose the exact look that you want. Even better, you can see how treatments will look in your own space, with your own lighting. This is a great method for getting the most accurate finish possible.
Will the site finished wood trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Yes! As more and more people are opting for unique, individualized looks, it only makes sense that site finished wood will become more popular. It takes a lot of work to finish your floor, however, so this DIY renaissance might not last forever. Still, it’s good to know that you have that option!
Oiled Wood Floors
While traditional polyurethane finishes layer on top of the wood, oil finishes penetrate the wood, seeping in and coating every layer of the wood. This makes your wood stronger and continues to improve the strength and durability over time.
Using an oil finish gives the wood that flatter, matte finish that is trendy these days. It looks organic and natural – just what homeowners are looking for in 2021!
To refinish a typical wood floor you have to first sand, then refinish. It’s a bit of a process. However, with oiled wood, to refinish, you just add more oil. Simple as that.
The drawback to an oil finish is it can exacerbate some of the challenges of wood flooring, making it more susceptible to water damage and scratches. While refinishing is easier than traditional finishes, you may find yourself refinishing more often and spending more time maintaining your floor.
Will the oiled wood trend last in 2021 and beyond?
It’s still pretty new, but as matte finish increases in popularity, I believed oil finishes will, as well.
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2021 Wood Floor Layout and Pattern Trends
It’s no surprise that patterned floors are still a huge hit. Whether you’re looking for complex, busy patterns or more simplistic layouts, you’ll see sleek, upscale wood flooring pattern trends 2021.
Herringbone Wood Floors
First, let me clear up a little misconception. Chevron and herringbone are very similar, but each has its distinction.
While chevron floors require the wood planks to be angled and come together to a point, Herringbone achieves a similar look by connecting two planks at a 90-degree angle. This pattern can give your floor a focal point, and make the room feel larger, as the Herringbone angles are more narrow.
Longer herringbone patterns are going to be super hot over the next year, especially among young homeowners. Whether it’s in a small area, like a hallway, or a common area like the kitchen, herringbone makes your floor look custom, and unique, at a fraction of the cost.
Will the herringbone wood trend last in 2021 and beyond?
This trend isn’t likely to last forever, but it sure looks pretty while it’s here. The beauty of herringbone-patterned flooring is that you don’t need the pattern across your entire floor. If it seems too busy, you can create a focal point in a small area such as entryways, or in the middle of a large room.
This is one trend you can expect to see every year in every style for the foreseeable future. Longer, wider planks make your room look larger, more open, more cohesive, and less busy.
While shorter, thinner, planks give more of a traditional hardwood look, they will also start to look outdated for that same reason.
In 2021 I recommend getting on board with the large and extra-large plank trend!
“I always pick “trends” that I think will have longevity in the marketplace. Elongated tiles or planks have made a splash and are here to stay. Your best best is 6-8” wide and 24’-48” long. This size lends to a comfortable casual presentation.” – Courtney Greger, My Flipping Job
Will the wide plank wood trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Manufacturers are only trending towards even wider and longer planks. This trend will soon become a classic staple and will likely last the test of time.
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Did we miss anything? Leave it in the comments – we’d love to hear your thoughts!
As you can see, there’s a lot going on in the wood flooring industry right now. There is plenty of different, unique options trending that will likely stick around for years to come, which means your possibilities are endless.