Rebecca is collecting ideas to update the 1961 kitchen, and she recently asked me what I thought of this kitchen flooring collection: Cushion Step Impressions vinyl sheet flooring from Armstrong. I thought it looked nice, so I asked my contact at Armstrong if she could send me some samples, and she did. (Thanks, Michele!) The box arrived yesterday and: I like the look of this stuff a lot — especially the faux gray terrazzo (above) and the two faux linoleums (shown in the slide show after the jump). P.S., it’s kind of an inside joke to call a vinyl sheet flooring “faux linoleum” because linoleum is itself usually “faux marble.” So, I don’t get too hung up on “faux.”
I recently read somewhere that vinyl sheet flooring and laminate countertops have made a big comeback during the Great Recession. Like it says in our Mid-Century Modest Manifesto, maybe whatnot-luxury doesn’t seem like such a great idea anymore if it means taking out a home equity loan. If you can even get a home equity loan. “Trendy” or not, I have always maintained that vinyl sheet flooring is the easiest there is to take care of. Sweep and damp mop, and you’re shiny and new and off to other stuff. Hey: The two Armstrong terrazzo styles are, like, comprised of faux flakes of chipped marble — aka dust — so I’m pretty sure the real thing will blend right in. If you want to simplify your life: Get vinyl sheet like this.
Rebecca also liked the idea of this flooring because Armstrong touts it as super comfortable underfoot. The terrazzo style is their middle-quality. The “Universal” design, which seems to me to be mimicking linoleum, is clearly thicker, and presumably, that much more comfortable.
One other thing that I will mention in this discussion. Floors like this tend to have a clear “warm” or “cool” color aspect. Like: “Red is hot, blue is not.” Grey=usually cool, Beige=usually warm. When choosing flooring for your kitchen, think about how the cool/warm of the floor will mesh with the other colors you have going on. Usually, you don’t want to put a lot of a cold color against a lot of a warm color. Also: If your kitchen faces west, and you want to “cool” it down, choose cool colors. Vice versa if your kitchen doesn’t get enough sunlight — in this case, you might want to favor warm colors. I think we all tend to make these decisions intuitively, but it becomes even easier (or at least, less haphazard) once you understand the theory. All this said, I notice that the Armstrong terrazzos have a little bit of both going on… there are flecks of beige in the grey, and vice versa, so they are extending the flexibility of these floors. I know this is kind of confusing. I think I need to post on it in more detail again. Just remember, to have “warm color? cool color?” on your radar, too, when you are planning a decorating project.