Cabin dwellers are drawn to natural materials such as wood, stone or slate, or ceramic tile. Many love the richness of hardwood.
I suggest laminate as a good alternative for lodge life. It looks great but is extremely durable and costs a whole lot less than wood. It comes in a wide variety of wood and tile look-a-likes.Laminate is durable, easy to clean, and relatively inexpensive. It has my vote.
Area carpets or scatter mats are better suited to lodge living than wall-to-wall carpet. Rugs add a splash of color, texture, and a creative touch to the decor, plus they protect the floor in high traffic or high spill areas. And they warm the toes on a cold night. More...
Braided rugs are a cabin classic. If you're industrious you can make your own, or you can check out the selection we've found. More...
Fur rugs, especially bear and cowhide rugs, have long been associated with cabin or lodge life. Today, many people are more comfortable with a faux fur look-a-like. Either way, bear skin and cowhide rugs look spectacular in front of a fireplace or mounted on a wall.
Sheepskin rugs are soft to touch, durable, and luxurious, Sheepskin rugs are another cabin classic. More...
The most popular wood flooring is oak. Maple, hickory, ash, pine, and walnut are also suitable. Pine flooring looks great but because it's a softer wood, it will get dents and scratches easily and wear faster. Nevertheless, some people love it and find the imperfections just add to the cabin atmosphere.
Solid woods can be refinished or even scraped and given a "distressed" look to create the appearance of "old" wood. Solid wood will last a lifetime or more.
Solid wood floors also retain their value.
Engineered woods (made by attaching a layer of hardwood to a softwood base and a plywood bottom) are prefinished and have a very hard surface.
If you have pets, kids, and lots of traffic, or if you plan to use wood flooring in your kitchen, an engineered wood floor may be a good choice for you - but note that you may not be able to refinish when the floor is eventually worn.
Wood in the kitchen? Not everyone thinks wood is a good choice in a kitchen but I've had hardwood in my kitchen for years and I love it. As long as it has a good durable finish , it's easy to maintain.
Laminates come in a variety of finishes for every taste. It is a good looking option for living areas, bedrooms, and hallways, but if you plan to use laminate in a kitchen or bathroom, you have to be sure the product you choose will withstand dampness or occasional spills.
We've had a slate look laminate in our bathroom for four years and it's held up well. But we're also very careful about mopping up any water quickly.
Note: Dark stained woods or laminates look rich but will show dust and scratches more.
Ceramic tile is low maintenance and will withstand moisture and traffic, but a word of caution - it's unforgiving if you drop a dish or glass. And it can be hard on your legs and back if you are standing on it for any length of time.
I know one person who installed it in her kitchen and regretted it because she found it just too hard a surface. Slate and stone have the same advantages and drawbacks as ceramic tile.
Some newer natural options to consider for your lodge or cabin:
A durable, eco-friendly alternative to traditional hardwood (because it replenishes so quickly), bamboo floors are increasing in popularity.
Bamboo flooring is said to be 10% harder than hardwood. It comes prefinished but unlike engineered wood, can be refinished up to three times - extending its lifespan.
Cork flooring has been used in Europe for years, but has only become popular in North America recently. Cork is suitable for all rooms. It is very comfortable to stand on, easy to care for, quiet, soft and warm to the touch, yet durable enough to handle lots of traffic. It insulates noise, is adaptable to temperature change, and is highly abrasion resistant.