Best Flooring Options for Baby
With a little one on the way, there’s a few things to think about when choosing the right flooring for your family. Interior decorator and author Tahn Scoon talks us through some options…
When thinking about flooring options for babies, one of the first things that springs to mind is softness. Babies are on the floor a lot. They need somewhere soft to lie, then later sit, crawl and play. Carpet may seem the obvious choice but there are a few downsides to consider. The most obvious is it’s quite hard to clean, so if installed in a room where eating and messy play will be taking place, you might be better off with hard floors, which can then be layered with smaller, more manageable, easier-to-clean area rugs.
Hard floors are more conducive to certain types of play, such as building block towers, jigsaw puzzles and push toys. However, if the thought of soft, plush carpet in a nursery is still very appealing, just ensure you select a low-allergy carpet and have it steam cleaned regularly. When it comes to colour selection, very light shades have the potential to show up dirt more easily and very dark shades may show up fluff, therefore a mid-tone neutral will be easiest to live with, and decorate around.
If hard floors, (layered with strategically-placed soft rugs for sitting and playing), seem a better choice, there’s still some things to consider. Again, softness is paramount and some hard floors are softer than others. Options that are more forgiving on little knees and tumbles are bamboo, timber, laminate and luxury vinyl. In areas where highchairs or push toys on plastic wheels might be in use, you may also want to take scratch resistance into consideration.
As babies and small children spend a lot of time on the floor, it’s important floors are kept clean. Ask your local Choices Flooring expert how to keep your chosen floors clean, and avoid chemical cleaners when possible as little ones are closer to the ground and will be more susceptible to inhaling or ingesting. Instead opt for natural solutions, such as hot water and vinegar.
And one last thought to leave you with, whilst new floors made of clean, safe materials are very appealing to parents-to-be (nobody wants to pop their baby down on old, dirty carpets or dated, cracked tiles) – try and organise your flooring to be installed well before your baby arrives so little lungs aren’t breathing in glues and such – or even better opt for a floating floor, which doesn’t require gluing. Floating floor options include bamboo, laminate, timber and engineered timber.
As I always tell my clients, invest in the things that add value to your home, this includes hardware, cabinetry and floors. In particular, it’s your choice of flooring that sets the tone for the rest of your décor, so choose well and your family will enjoy for many years to come.