Antonia's Notebook: Wood versus Carpets

PUBLISHED: 10:50 21 March 2012 | UPDATED: 15:02 20 February 2013

Antonia Edwards

Antonia Edwards

All the latest interiors news and trends from Sussex Life interiors expert Antonia Edwards. Check out Antonia's design blog

Have carpets had their day?
I've suggested having a wooden floor in our bedroom as we've always gone for a safe neutral coloured carpet. My husband just doesn't seem convinced. How can I win him over?
Sally, Horsham

I've often wondered what will supersede the trend for wooden flooring. When you look around at the interior fashions it appears the carpet has become virtually extinct! However, in light of the return of the patterned wallpaper it may not be long before traditional pub style carpet adorns our very own living rooms ... or perhaps not.

Neutral carpet is indeed a safe option for a bedroom. It gives you a blank canvas, complements white walls and is fairly innocuous, if sometimes a little bland. Bedroom flooring needn't be as hardwearing and easy to maintain as for some of the other rooms in the house. There's less traffic going through and it's not likely to be close to the muddy outdoors. It seems, therefore, that the bedroom is one of the few rooms where carpet is even permitted! Admittedly, some neutral carpets add a lot of character to a room, particularly those made of natural fibres. A wool sisal mix carpet is ideal for the bedroom as it won't be too prickly on your feet.

For many, a carpet in the bedroom is essential. There's nothing like waking up to the feeling of thick, soft carpet underfoot and it certainly adds to the cosiness required to create a secure and comfortable haven for sleeping. On the other hand, you can't deny the rich colour and charm that a wooden floor provides. From Scandinavian-style Nordic woods to dramatic dark woods like wenge and walnut, there's a wide choice of materials and effects.
Regardless of how it looks, wooden flooring is considered far more beneficial to our health in light of the increase in allergies. Carpets harbour dust-mites and other allergens even if you clean them frequently and some new carpets are even thought to give off chemical emissions. Wood floors are also ecologically friendly, since it is a natural resource and wood is both renewable and recyclable, as long as the right sort of wood is used. Opting for reclaimed wood will give the space a more rustic feel. Vincent Reed in West Sussex provides a wide range of reclaimed timbers from ancient oak to pine.

Also in favour of the wooden floor is the fact you can easily add the colour and texture of carpet with soft rugs and mats. It not only softens the look but is a good way to divide up your space into zones and allows plenty of flexibility when you fancy a change of colour scheme. Having said this, replacing a carpet is a lot less hassle than ripping out a wooden floor so it's important to bear this in mind if you commit to something permanent...

Latest from the Sussex Life