Blog post from April 2009: I know some people may say it’s not sensible to specify white flooring in a rental flat but I really wanted that brilliant white look to add to the feeling of space and light. Solid wood such as limed oak was too expensive, pale carpets mark far too easily in your average rentals and laminate can have sound issues in older buildings….. so when Fallowfield Timber sourced me 36m of 9″ T&G pine boards grooved underneath to prevent the wide boards warping, for just under £300 I was sold!
Fitting and the extra time were a cost consideration but it still worked out the best price wise option. To get the final finish I used: knot sealant over any knots to prevent oil coming through the water based paint & varnish; two coats of B&Q bare wood primer which acts as both primer and undercoat; 120 paper to lightly smooth in between coats; white spirit to lightly wipe the boards clean of dust; two coats of Dulux Diamond Eggshell in brilliant white. I used this water based paint because oil based whites slowly go yellow as the oil comes to the fore and nicotine-style floors are not high on my list of design aspirations!
Finally I sealed the floor with two coats of Ronseal Diamond Hard floor varnish. I opted for a gloss finish but you can chose Satin or Matt dependant on the look you want to achieve.
N.B. FOUR YEARS ON, MARCH 2013 : The floors still look amazing and remain brilliant white. They’re easily scrubbable between tenancies and always come up looking sparkling after a wipe over with Cif. Due to the softness of modern inexpensive pine, heels have made indentations but I don’t mind that so much. I’d have allowed a longer time for the pine to rest and acclimatise in the flat as gaps have appeared between boards but this is not a massive problem in this rented property. If you want perfection, allow at least 2-3 weeks acclimatisation for your newly bought timber to dry out and shrinker use engineered board or kiln dried timber. But then of course, your costs go up!
For your pure virginal flooring delectation, here are some more amazing Pinterest houses featuring white floorboards: