How Flooring Affects the Feel of a Room

How Flooring Affects the Feel of a Room

Your choice of flooring in a room affects more than the room’s aesthetic. It can affect your mood and even your health. Learn more about how flooring affects the feel of a room.


Flooring can change your perception of a room’s size. It may seem counterintuitive, but larger tiles can make a small room seem bigger since they have fewer lines to break up your view of the room. The fewer “interruptions” in your line of sight, the larger the room seems.

Laying flooring diagonally also increases the perception of size. Complex, crosshatched, or parquet patterns should be reserved for larger rooms. These complicated installations fragment the visual message and can make a room seem smaller.

It’s a mistake to think a lighter colored floor will always make a room seem bigger. It’s also a mistake to think that a dark floor will necessarily make a room look smaller. The color of the walls and the amount of light in the room can greatly impact how you perceive its dimensions.


Tile absorbs and radiates heat, which is why it’s a good choice for floors with under-floor heating systems. Tile heats up when exposed to sunlight. That’s great in the winter, but if you place tile on a floor in a room with big windows, you may have to invest in some drapes that block sun in the summer to keep your tiles cool.


Allergens gather in carpeting. Ifyou’ve got area rugs atop wood floors, you can still be affected if both the rugs and the floor aren’t kept scrupulously clean. People with allergies or other sensitivities should research the composition of flooring, whether carpet, wood, or vinyl.

Natural or Manufactured Appearance

Engineered flooring comes in both natural wood and synthetic vinyl. Both can look beautiful. Vinyl is water resistant and can withstand scratches from pet paws. Vinyl can tear, however, so you take care when moving furniture.

Engineered hardwood provides the warmth and authenticity of real wood. However, these floors are more subject to scratches, shouldn’t get wet, and might not endure heavy traffic from pets and children. Yet if you want a natural, warm look in the room you’re designing, hardwood is a beautiful choice. Vinyl flooring is convenient—but even with new imaging techniques, it won’t make anyone believe it’s real wood.

When considering flooring, think about the ambience you’re trying to create in the room. Do you want it to look sleek and modern, or traditional and warm? Who will use the room, and what they’ll use it for, is a most important consideration.

Remember, your choice of flooring is simply one element of creating a room’s look from many components. If you’re not sure, flooring retailers or interior decorators can help you choose flooring that will express the mood you’re trying to evoke.