Design

Plank check

Follow our guide to find the engineered timber flooring that suits your interior down to the ground.

In association with Forté Flooring

Long the most coveted material in the flooring world, solid wood is a classic beauty. But did you know that its modern engineered counterpart (made by pressing a top layer of hardwood timber veneer onto an engineered core) has the same good looks and greater stability, plus it’s installed faster, involves less wastage, and in choosing it you’re helping to decrease the amount of slow-growing hardwood timber that’s harvested to make flooring every year? Expert in engineered timber inspired by global trends, Forté Flooring is a local go-to for its incredible range, including the beautiful oak planks you see before you. If you’re starting from the ground up at your place, keep the following in mind when deciding which of their shades and styles best suits your spaces.

LIGHT

A versatile fit for a variety of aesthetics, pale flooring creates the illusion of space by reflecting the light, and forms an unobtrusive backdrop for the rest of your décor. When making your selection, consider whether you prefer a natural or a whitewashed finish. If you’re living with children and/or pets, opt for a style with knots or cracks for visual variation that helps disguise dust and whatnot.

MAIN IMAGE AND ABOVE French oak engineered flooring in La Grange from Forté Flooring’s Manor Classique collection, which is finished with an ageing stain and raw lacquer for a hard-wearing, matte look. Photography: Jackie Meiring.

SWATCHES, FROM LEFT Both by Forté Flooring: European oak engineered flooring in Blond Oak Herringbone from the Smartfloor collection pre-finished with PureMatte lacquer; French oak engineered flooring in Natural from the Manor Atelier collection, which has deep grains for a rustic effect.

MEDIUM

It’s said that mid tones are the little black dress of the colour spectrum — sensational for every occasion and essentially fail- safe. Even so, there’s much to choose from in this category, so you’ll need to determine how warm (honey-ish) or cool (grey-ish) you’d like your floors to be. 

ABOVE European oak engineered flooring in Champagne Oak from Forté Flooring’s thick, robust Ultra collection. Photography: Mark Scowen.

SWATCHES, FROM LEFT Both by Forté Flooring: European oak engineered flooring in Bordeaux Oak from the low-maintenance Ultra collection; Rough-sawn European oak engineered flooring in Limestone from the distressed-look Villa collection.

DARK

Arguably the most luxurious effect of all, dark-toned timber absorbs the light for a cocooning feel that can make large rooms feel cosier. Depending on the depth of the stain, the woodgrain might be slightly less visible than with paler flooring. In this case, forgoing standard linear planks for those laid in a chevron or herringbone pattern can be a clever way to bring textural appeal to the look. Although nobody can deny the sophistication of a flat dark tone, styles with a bit more colour contrast dial up both the practicality and the drama.

ABOVE French oak engineered flooring in Heathered Grey Chevron from Forté Flooring’s Manor Classique collection.

SWATCHES, FROM LEFT Both by Forté Flooring: European oak engineered flooring in Tokyo from the Urban Plank collection, designed with affordability in mind; French oak engineered flooring in McKinny from the hand-scraped Manor Rustique collection.

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