Flooring ideas to create a bold scheme

Want to bring colour and pattern into your home? Look no further than your flooring. Ashley Hicks shares his tips.

dining room with wooden table and chairs

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Paul Raeside)

Carpet tiles are not an obvious choice for home interiors, but have been used to striking effect in this dining room.

With geometric designs and lively colours taking centre stage in flooring this season, Ashley Hicks shares his five top tips on how to use them with confidence to create the perfect bold scheme.

I have no rules, except that the floors should contrast with the walls. It's usually a mistake to have them the same colour as it can feel like a vacuum. On the other hand, when I was 15, my bedroom walls, ceiling and floor were all black and that was beautiful. So rules don't really work!

CHOOSE THE RIGHT MATERIAL It is worth considering the acoustics of the room before you lay a new floor. If they're an issue, you may want to choose carpet. Cork can be great where you want a warm, textured, hard floor that's acoustically OK. I just used a Wicanders grey stained wood-veneered cork throughout a studio flat, which worked very well.

room with mosaic marble floor and staircase

(Image credit: TBC)

This mosaic marble floor is a witty take on Victorian tile designs.

Use a pattern that is a very different scale to any other dominant patterns in the space. Have at least one colour that is picked up elsewhere in the room. I put decorative cement tiles throughout the hall, dining room, kitchen and bathrooms in my country house, which sounds odd but it looks so great. The pattern hides dirt brilliantly and adds life to the rooms.

OUT WITH THE OLD Personally I find it odd that people can obsess about old floorboards - they can end up dominating the space in a way that a floor really shouldn't. Floors are best when they form a textured ground for other things to sit on. The boldest pattern can sometimes do this in a way that old boards will not. It's better to build your own story rather than have it dictated by your flooring's former life.

Consider your new flooring in relation to what you've laid in the rooms next to it. You might want the same material to run through both rooms to unite them, especially if they are very open to each other. But usually I'd want a real contrast between them. If one is patterned, the other should be plain perhaps, or certainly have a very different scale of pattern.

Find more inspiring flooring ideas on House to Home.


Thea Babington-Stitt
Managing Editor

Thea Babington-Stitt is the Managing Editor for Ideal Home. Thea has been working across some of the UK’s leading interiors titles for around 10 years.

She started working on these magazines and websites after graduating from City University London with a Masters in Magazine Journalism. Before moving to Ideal Home, Thea was News and Features Editor at Homes & Gardens, LivingEtc and Country Homes & Interiors.