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Hand Scraped Hardwood Floors: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Hand scraped hardwood floors have been around since the 16th century. In fact, as seen in Gustave Caillebotte's 1875 painting, hand scraped floors used to be the only kind of hardwood floor. Modern machines now make refinishing floors a much less tedious process for professionals and homeowners alike, but doing things by hand has its own charm. Unfortunately, handscraped floors can go awry very, very quickly. Let me tell you how.

Friends, fast and easy does not always equal good. In fact, when it comes to hardwood floors it almost never does. The problem with handscraped floors comes when you want the genuine look of hand-crafted floors without the cost or time it takes to get them. So you go the machine-made route and get "hand scraped" prefinished hardwood, or worse yet, "hand scraped" laminate.

Let us be clear: we have no problem with prefinished floors or laminate. But they will always be a "faux" product, because neither will ever be scraped by hand. So instead of a finely crafted floor, you're left with an otherwise great floor that looks like it's trying too hard to be something it's not. It looks fake, because it is. It's like Ron Swanson's take on skim milk. ("It's water lying about being milk," which we just so happen to agree with.)

See what we mean? Who wants a floor that's so rippled it could almost make you sea sick?

True handscraped floors (as in, they are scraped after they are installed in your home) are much more subtle, like those below. They don't scream LOOK AT ME! I AM A HAND SCRAPED HARDWOOD FLOOR! Their beauty is immediately evident, but not in your face like prefinished hardwood and laminate.

Think of them as the Jennifer Aniston of floors, guys. They will always, always, always be in style, not because they're boring but because they are classic and never so trendy or over-the-top as to be dated in five years. That's important when you're spending money on floors because even the cheap stuff ain't exactly cheap. So if you're going to spend thousands of dollars, why not get something that you love that will look gorgeous forever, instead of spending almost the same amount on something that's never quite going to live up to the real thing?

Photo: Southern Oaks Flooring, Nashville, TN

If you still don't have your head quite wrapped around this whole hand scraped floor thing, give us a call or send us an email. We're here to help you figure all this out, and we actually enjoy doing it! If you live in the Nashville area, you can also set up a consultation so you can get all the details in person!

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