How to Add Texture and Character to Your Wood Floors


Over the last several years, the trend has been moving far away from formal décor trends in hardwood flooring towards flooring boasting a homier, more lived-in look. Rustic chic is one style that’s been taking homes by storm. Adding greater texture and a slightly less pristine appearance to your floors is a great way to stand out, be unique, and offer a conversation piece into your daily living space.

From texturing to edging techniques, here’s how you can add character to your wood flooring. Bonus: you can also mask scratches, dents and imperfections while you’re at it.


If you like traditional and rustic looks, go with a hand-scraped look, which involves smoothing lumber by pulling a draw knife across the boards. The result? A sturdier floor thanks to the scraping away of the outside plank of softer wood to expose the harder grain beneath. Today’s planks are milled with machines, which means they’re much smoother and uniform than original Colonial homes were.

Now, people pay good money to have their smooth floors hand-scraped for a varied texture that’s handmade and unique to each plank. Many companies offer this technique through the use of machines, but there are artisan woodworkers out there who still perform this by hand.


This technique scrapes away the soft exterior of a plank to expose the harder grain beneath, just like hand-scraping. However, it’s not achieved through the use of a blade but rather with a wire-bristled brush. This method will expose the contours of the woodgrain to result in a rustic or lived-in effect. It’s great for high-traffic areas or if you have many children or pets; that’s because it can hide minor dents and scratches.


Through beveling, you can shape the edges of each plank by shaving the edge at a 45-degree angle. This will result in a “V” shape when the boards are pressed together, or, for a similar effect but with a “U” shape, a method called “pillowing,” can be done. The resulting square edges prevent dust and dirt from collecting in the seams; however, installation is more time consuming and difficult.

Distressing and Patina

If you’re looking for a new floor with an old look, try distressing or patina. Distressed floors recreate signs of wear through marking up of the surface through denting, chipping, scratching, and burning. Some people even choose to bore holes that resemble those of termites! Patina is a natural sheen that comes with age and wear, achieved more readily with minerals, chemicals, paints and UV rays.

Contact Designer Wood Flooring in San Antonio

To learn more about our hardwood floor services, including custom floors and inlays, contact us at 830-228-4866 or email us at Our showroom is in Spring Branch, TX, open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturdays by appointment.



| Categories: Flooring