Defining Character

rustic hardwood header

We showed you the new trends for 2014, and no matter the location, the popular syle for the year is getting back to basics with earthy tones.  Natural character and authenticity of hardwood flooring is the popular look grabbing interest all over America.  The typical over-polished, sterile flooring is transitioning into classic and rustic design that captures the quality of the hardwood.

character grade hardwood


This new appreciation for unfinished hardwood requires that this new style reveal the essence of fresh cut hardwood. The presence of knots and color variations creates warmth and harmonizes the space with nature. Character grade flooring looks great in many environments, from a large suburban home to a ski chalet.



At the other end of the spectrum of character, some of you want a look that shows all the imperfections. Some retailers market this as “rustic” or “tavern” character grade.


So what’s the difference?


True character grade flooring is a beautiful mix of clear wood with knots and a little sap. This grade comes in long lengths. We offer beautiful 2-10’ options. You’ll notice the subtle variations in color that remind you of the uniqueness of the tree it came from.


There is a clear distinction between character grade and the “rustic” or “tavern” options. In our industry, this grade is known as #2 common. This grade is far cheaper because it is made up of less desirable cuts of wood from #1 common and select and better grades. It will have a majority of shorter boards. You’ll be able to see all of the natural and manufacturing variations including knot holes and open worm holes along with prominent color differences.  Manufacturing variations include drying characters and machining irregularities will be noticeable.

#2 Common Grade Hardwood



#2 Common is great for creating a hunting cabin or barn feel but it is not a typical choice for most homes.



Whatever look you have in mind, we’d be happy to help you find the wood flooring that’s best suited to your project.