What is Parquet Flooring?

A wooden floor composed of short strips or blocks of wood forming a pattern, sometimes with inlays of other woods or other materials.

The word “Parquet” derives from the Old French parchet (the diminutive of parc), literally meaning "a small enclosed space". Large diagonal squares known as parquet de Versailles were introduced in 1684 as parquet de menuiserie ("woodwork parquet")

Nowadays most of the people often refer parquet flooring to herring bone, which is probably the most popular and classic parquet pattern. It is widely spread as a traditional and contemporary wooden flooring.

Materials:
The most commonly used wood species for a parquet flooring is oak. Oak Parquet combines two of the most important qualities - Durability and Cost. For the ones with more sophisticated taste there are a lot of other options, such as Walnut Parquet, Mahogany Parquet, Ipe Parquet and other exotic or commonly used wood species. More or less parquet blocks can be manufactured from any wood species.

Installation:
When it comes to an installation of a Parquet Flooring, it is not a straight forward job. Only an experienced and professional floor layer will do a decent job. The method of installation requires the sub-floor to be completely levelled, the parquet blocks to be fully bonded on to the base. Sanding, Gap filling and Finishing on site are procedures that are part of the parquet flooring installation process.

Patterns:
Parquet flooring can be laid in variety of patterns. Herringbone is the most popular among them, although much more, (such as Chevron, Basket Weave, 5 finger, Old Dutch) parquet patterns are also available. In the past any patterns has been done by hand, cutting and fitting each individual parquet block. Nowadays we can produce unlimited variety of mosaic panels, with simple or complex design and variety of wood species, to match the desired effect. They comes as a single unit (usually squares) made and assembled in a factory, which make the process much, much faster. Although the installation of art mosaic panels have same requirements as the installation of the parquet flooring.

Classic Herringbone
5 finger Parquet
Brick Pattern
Old Dutch Pattern
Double Herring Bone Pattern
Wave Pattern


Types of Parquet Flooring
When we are talking about a classic Parquet, there a two main things that needs to be considered prior installation.

Structure of the parquet

  • Solid Parquet refers to parquet blocks made from solid piece of wood (Oak, Walnut, Merbau, Ipe, etc), usually 18 or 20mm thick with tongue & groove on all 4 sides.
  • Engineered Parquet is a lot popular lately, because of its extra stability and the fact that it is suitable for installation over under floor heating. Basically it is solid hardwood wear layer on top of a plywood base. It also comes with tongue & groove on the four sides for easy and stable fitting.
  • Parquet Overlay is a cost effective alternative of the solid parquet, it is still made from a single piece of wood block, but it is much thinner, usually around 9-10mm and it does not have tongue & groove, which sometimes require to be pinned down on to the sub-floor during the flooring installation.

Grade of the parquet

As any other wooden flooring, parquet also comes in different grades.

Prime Grade Oak Herring bone Prime grade parquet – no knots, no sap wood allowed, and more even colour.
Mix Grade Oak Herring bone Mixed or Selected Grade Parquet– small knots up to 20mm, no more than 10% sapwood allowed, normal colour variation
Rustic Grade Oak Herring bone Rustic grade Parquet – any size knots, often filled with filler, sap wood allowed, natural colour variation.

Please note that the grade (specification or names) may vary, due to different countries having different grading rules and industry standards. Unfortunately, there is no single definitive framework that can be used as an International Standard and the criteria can also vary between wood species.

Maintenance

As an wooden flooring – the parquet also require a good maintenance in order to keep your hardwood flooring in good condition for longer. Specific maintenance requirements would depends of the type of floor finish that is applied on the parquet flooring (Lacquer, Varnish, Hard Wax Oil, etc). One thing is sure, the parquet flooring can be 100% restored, or renovated to its original beauty. Once in every 10-15 years your wooden flooring might need sanding and re-finishing. Floor sanding would be appropriate option in all types of parquet that you may have in your property. If you require Parquet floor sanding, feel free to contact us. Luxury Wood Flooring provides second to none, Parquet flooring renovation services in London & Home Counties.