Painted Floors - Cool Tricks For Painted Wood Floors

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Painted floors create amazing results.

Using simple wood floor paint, wood floor finishes, floor stain and a floor varnish; painting wood floors is relatively easy and inexpensive and turn your floors into a feature. 

white floorboards toothfairyfashiontale


If you have new floorboards you probably won't need to do a lot to make them look amazing, especially if you have good quality wood floors. If that's the case you only need to oil or seal them and let the natural grain come through.

What if you paint them black?

black floors

Source: minna sisko

Here are ways of getting your painted floorboards right the first time!

Painted Floors

Its easy to make a your painted floorboards a feature when you use a good quality paint.

24342_0_8-8171-eclectic-entry minna sisko

Source: minna sisko

White floors are very popular, but you can easily use anything from neutrals, bright floor paint colors and even black and get a stunning look. You might decide on an eggshell floor paint finish. A lot will depend on your budget, but even though paint color is important you also need to take into account:

  1. the amount of natural light in the room
  2. the amount of everyday traffic and
  3. is it durable and hardwearing.

You want it to look great and last.


Painted Floorboards

White painted floors have been popular for some time.

white wood flooring

Source: Pinterest

They are a great for old boards and bring light and space into a room; but they can be difficult to get perfect, so don't stress if gaps or imperfections show up. That is part of the charm of old wood boards. 

A porch paint, such as Valspar Paint, is fine for a rustic approach, but many porch or basement paints aren’t designed for timber flooring, even though they can give a sleek result when applied well. (More on how to paint concrete floor paints here).

If you’re after a longer-lasting glossy finish, try a water based acrylic urethane that has been tinted white. 

Wood Floor Finishes and Effects

If you’re working with existing floorboards, floor sanding is completely necessary to remove the existing finish and create a smooth surface to paint.

checkerboard floor boards

Source: Pinterest

Without this step, your floor may not absorb your stain, paint or wash you apply and show up uneven blemishes, holes or patchy stains. When painting, cover any space beneath doors with plastic to keep dust out and avoid spoiling your floors.

painted floorboards

Source: toothfairyfashiontale

Once you have prepared your surface you can:

  1. Paint wood washing or liming floorboards - which produce a light feel. Wood washes create a soft, French provincial and Swedish style floors. The subtle colors highlight the grain of natural timber. Adding more color will make the surface look less transparent, so work out when you want to stop.
  2. Staining floors - light or deep, rich colors make them resemble other more expensive woods.
  3. Go decorative; use different paints or paint washes and milk paints for a checkerboard effect. Classic black and white checkerboard always looks great; try pastel or muted grey and white paint tones to suit your decor.
stained and stencil floors
Source: Tumblr

Milk paint floors are easy and look great. Here is a video showing you how this simple technique can change your home decor to wow!

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Video on Milk Paint Floors

Rule Number One - No Thickly Painted Floors

Painted floors wear better and longer when your paint is thin. Never apply thick paint to floorboards - its easy to do when you are in a hurry but it won't last.

The reason thinly painted floors wear slower is because they dry harder. 

Rule Two - Choose Your Floor Paint Carefully

For long lasting durability use oil-based primers and paints for floorboards. You can also buy waterborne enamels, like Deft or Zar, or other specialty floor paints to protect your floor paints.

If you prefer milk paint there is a great selection of milk paint available or you can make your own milk paint to get a particular look or want an extra decorating challenge.

washed floor treatment

Source: Furnish uk

Rule Three - Choosing Your Floor Paint Colors


Source: pinterest

Make choosing a floor paint color easy by following these simple rules.

  1. Choose your paint color as if you were choosing carpet colors.
  2. Choose a paint color that goes with your home decor. If your home decor is classic or vintage choose a paint color that will compliment, not clash, with it. The painted floors below make a real statement. This hallway has little to compete with, so is prefect for this colonial hallway.
  3. Dark colors show dirt, scuff and wear and tear more easily. Dark colors also darken a room, absorbing light.
  4. Darker colors make rooms look smaller and heavier. Lighter colors make rooms feel bigger and brighter.
  5. White remains one of the most popular paint colors, because it ages well, goes with almost any home decor and there are so many shades of white from cool to warm colors to match any decor style.
Hallway in colonial home with colorful wooden floor

Source: via Melissa on Pinterest

Rule Four - How to Paint Wood Floors

  1. sand your floorboards with 150-grit sandpaper,
  2. wash floors to remove all dust and dirt,
  3. allow floor to dry completely - the drier the better - 1-2 days,
  4. apply primer and dry overnight,
  5. lightly sand floors with 220-grit sandpaper,
  6. wipe floor with a cloth or rag dampened with mineral spirits,
  7. apply a thin coat of paint with a natural-bristle brush or roller. A brush creates a smoother finish while a roller creates a more stippled look,
  8. allow paint to dry; at least 24 hours then
  9. apply two more thin coats - allow each 24 hours to dry before applying the next coat of paint.

You can walk on your floor within 24 hours but please, no high heels! For the best result, wait 28 days for maximum hardness before adding heavy furniture.

Here is an article using floor stencils to get the most amazing looks.