dining room wood floors

by | Feb 14, 2018 | All Things Home, Decorating, Dining Room, My House, Room Makeovers | 29 comments

Before we even moved into this house, before we even saw the house in person, I let Jeff know I had my eye on the carpeting in the dining room.  For a room that is the “most formal” in the house, carpeting just didn’t work for me.  I also do a lot of photo shoots in my dining room for this blog as well as freelance articles, so it was important to me to have the larger surfaces of the room (floor, walls, etc.) looking just how I wanted.

There was also the practical side of things.  The carpet is 13 years old and, although you can’t see it in the picture, it was looking a little tired.  Wood floors would be easier to keep clean, especially since the dining room is right off of the foyer.

The dining room flows into the kitchen/eating area, so we wanted the floors to match.  And that meant we would have to have the floors finished on-site.

We may have considered installing pre-finished floors ourselves, but finishing floors on-site is a whole other ball of wax.  With Jeff in a full-time masters degree program (last semester!) and working full-time, it was just better to hire out this particular project.

Can I just say, as a DIYer, it’s really hard to hire out things you can do yourself!  We’ve hired out some projects before, but they’ve all been ones we really needed to hire out, because they required specialty skills or equipment that we didn’t have.  But, in this season of life, for this specific project, it was the best option.

After I announced that we were moving to Rochester, MN, I received an e-mail from a long-time reader and MMS Milk Paint user, Olivia.  We even featured her MMS Milk Paint kitchen makeover in Look Book One.  She just wanted to stop by to say hello, meet my family (she’s a boy mom as well), and see our new house.  She mentioned that her husband had a wood floor business, Wagner’s Wood Floors, so I asked if he could take a look at our dining room and office and give us an estimate for installing and finishing wood floors.

We had Olivia and her family over during Christmas break.  The boys played together, Olivia and I chatted about blogs, photography, and decorating, and Jeff and her husband, Andy, talked football and wood floors.  He clearly knew his stuff and Jeff & I liked the idea of supporting the business of such a great family, so we hired Andy for the job.

In January, he dropped off the flooring, so it could acclimate to the humidity in our house for a few weeks.  We selected a birch to match the floors in the kitchen/eating area.  The original floors have ambered over time, so we knew the new floor would look a little different.  For that reason, we opted for a walnut border in the dining room.  It works for the style of the house and formality of the room, but the main reason was to provide a little separation between the new and old floor.

Last weekend, we moved all of the furniture out of my office and the dining room and put the bulk of it in the living room and eating area.  We actually got it all packed in there pretty nicely, so it wasn’t too much of an inconvenience.

Jeff and I ripped out the carpet in the office (I’ll share about that in another post), but we couldn’t in the dining room due to the stacks of wood flooring.  We had done everything we could to get ready for the big week!

Andy came about 8:00 every morning for a week to install, fill, sand, and finally seal and finish the floors.  He was even cutting boards outside, as falling snow was mingling with sawdust in his “workshop” set up on our porch!  He was quick, professional, and we are so pleased with how the floors turned out.  They look so good.

The finish was stinky, since it was oil based, but the smell wasn’t too bad and it dissipated relatively quickly.  I closed the doors to our bedrooms and to the basement, so there were places in the house we could go where it didn’t smell.  It definitely would’ve been better if we did the floors when it was warmer and we could have the windows opened, but this worked out okay.

This weekend, Jeff and I installed and painted the quarter-round shoe molding in the dining room…

…and moved all of the furniture back into the room.

I’m planning on getting a round braided jute rug for under the table, but I need to wait for a month for the floors to cure before laying it down.  I am still trying to figure out all of the furniture placement and how I want to finish off this room, but it is definitely heading in the right direction!  I’ll share some of my thoughts and ideas for the room in another post.

For now, I am just enjoying those beautiful new floors!


  1. Elizabeth

    Love the floors? Can you post a pic of the transition you did with the contrasting floors? I think that is always tricky when you are changing flooring in only one room. Thanks!!!

  2. Cathy Weber

    Those are so pretty…great idea with the walnut edging. I would love to see a pic of the transition into the kitchen someday. Those floors really do shine!

  3. Amanda

    They look absolutely beautiful! I love the walnut edging, and the color on the flooring is just stunning!

  4. Katherine

    The floors look great. What, if anything, do you put on the feet of your furniture with hardwood floors?

    • Cindy D

      Hi Katherine We have wood floors throughout our house. You can purchase saucers to put under your table legs. It’s like the soft side of velcro that touches the floor. For chairs, we use the little circles that stick to the bottom of the chair legs. They sell them in assorted size circles in one pkg. Works great for us.

  5. Darcy

    The walnut edging looks so polished! Thanks for sharing that tip!

  6. Joselyn

    The variation in colors is stunningly beautiful!

  7. Teresa

    Beautiful job Andy! The new hardwoods are gorgeous and the walnut edging just makes the dining room pop. From the first time you showed the new house, the number one thing I wanted to see get changed is ripping the carpeting out of the formal dining room and installing hardwoods. The room has been completely transformed into a beautiful, elegant space now.

  8. Armida

    Please post a pic of both new and existing in the same shot?

  9. Maggie

    Beautiful floors. I love to support great families.

  10. Lorie

    I knew those floors were going to happen sooner rather than later! I’m a “boy mom” too, and although
    mine are now 28 and 34, I totally get it. They look fantastic. Congrats to Andy on a job well done.

  11. PJ

    Gorgeous floors! My house is full of wood flooring that is acclimating so that my husband can install it in my kitchen. I cannot wait to have floors as pretty as yours.

  12. Miss Mustard Seed

    We put sticky felt pads on the bottom of everything.

    • Lorie

      My husband is a bit of a fanatic about our hardwoods, we have them throughout the house with the exception of the bathrooms, although I would have put them there too but I let my floor guy talk me out of it. Probably a good move. That being said, EVERYTHING that comes into this house gets felt pads. In fact if the dog would stand still long enough he’d probably attach four on her paws.

  13. Carole

    The room is beautiful! I’m looking into replacing the kitchen floor as the tile is cracked in places. The other floors are all cherry so I am trying to decide what medium to use in the kitchen. The cabinets are cherry. Any suggestions?

  14. Karen

    Beautiful! Love how the new floors look!

  15. Mary in VA

    This gorgeous floor looks so much better than the carpet – than any carpet, really. The room is starting to look fabulous!

  16. Karen K from Buffalo

    The new floors are gorgeous!! I never would have thought about birch flooring. It just goes so well with your furniture!! Can’t wait for more updates on the dining room!

  17. René Day

    Oh my gosh!! I am LOVING the walnut edge design in your new floors. It has great impact for the eye next to the painted molding. Great, great idea! Beautiful, as always.

  18. Lori in Missouri

    Hi MMS! Today while browsing newsstand in a B.A.M I saw your new house studio spread in Watercolor magazine April, 2018. I smiled and said, “I know her!” haha Congrats on your exposure to a whole different crowd of folks… It looked great!

  19. Marlene Stephenson

    They are beautiful and know you will love them. Is that list of yours getting smaller or are you adding to it? lol!

  20. Lynda

    Gorgeous Marian!

  21. Linda

    The floor looks so beautiful and I love the border you did for the transition!

  22. Pam

    Looks great 😍 I love your style!

  23. Mary S

    Looks so good. I’m all for removing old carpeting.

  24. Elizabeth St.

    The results were definitely worth the effort of replacing the carpeting with hardwood. I’m so glad you and Jeff opted to work with a “friend of the blog” for the project. He did a beautiful job, and the family connection of the project adds a nice layer to the ways in which the house is truly becoming your own.

  25. Norma Rolader

    The floors turned out beautifully and what a difference

  26. Kathy

    Marion, we live in Washington and were told not to put wood floors down in the winter as they expand and shrink due to the cold weather….have you ever heard of that before? Maybe it was an old wives tale, curious if there is any truth to that?

  27. Dimitra

    Marion, can you please share where you purchased the wooden flush to the floor vents ? thanks


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Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…

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