Once available only in glue down tiles, floating floor construction widens the market for high-fashion, recycled leather flooring
The customer was an accountant who worked from her home. She wanted a distinctive floor for her home office, where she meets with clients. She was trying to decide between cork and a high-end carpet until Mike Smith, of ProSource Wholesale Flooring in Cincinnati, showed her recycled leather flooring.
“For her, once she saw it, the leather won, hands-down, even though Cincinnati tends to be a very conservative market,” Smith says. “I think the next green push will be leather flooring. It just takes time for the Midwest to catch up with the rest of the nation.”
Some would argue that Smith is ahead of many areas of the country. He is now working with a customer who is building a home in Florida, which will have more than one room of leather flooring, in addition to a leather wall. And this time, he has more leather flooring choices to work with.
At the time of the home office job, the only product available was a recycled leather tile, which was glued to the floor. Now, Smith’s preferred manufacturer, EcoDomo, has come out with an engineered, self-locking floor that’s available in planks, square tiles and panels.
This is a floating floor, meaning that it is not glued or nailed to the subfloor. The planks and panels are 3/8-inch thick and have a layer of recycled leather on top, a core made of HDF (high-density fiberboard) and a cork backing. This construction – the same as many cork, linoleum and laminate floors – offers more shock absorption under foot, and more protection for the floor from moisture issues.
In business since 2005, EcoDomo’s claims rate is less than two percent. The most common mistakes are tied to installation without proper acclimation before installation, insufficient pressure on the tiles for glue down application, and improper subfloor preparation, the company says.
Maintenance of the flooring means cleaning with a dust mop, vacuum and Ph-neutral hardwood floor cleaner. Periodic waxing also is recommended for the glue-down tile flooring.
Smith’s customer in Florida will be choosing flooring from the new, self-locking EcoDomo Rainforest Collection. Smith has agreed to keep us posted as this job progresses, and we’ll post photos when it’s done. Smith says he will also keep us up-to-date on indicators that leather is becoming a Midwest trend.
“It took awhile for bamboo and cork to take off here compared to the west or east coasts,” he says. “But we now sell tons of bamboo and cork. With leather, I think it’s just a matter of time.”©
Prosource Wholesale Flooring in Cincinnati, OH, is a Natural Interiors® member and can provide special retail pricing and assistance to e-mailers and callers who mention this blog. Contact them at 513-772-7726, Ext. 105 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
– Nancy Kibbee is editor at www.naturalinteriors.com