Shannon & Waterman Blog

Whether you are in search of a classic and timeless look, a trendy and bold statement, or something in between, there is a hardwood, a design, and a finish to suit every taste and home style.

Hickory, No Stain (from the Amelia & James Collection)

American Hardwoods

For homeowners who desire a low-maintenance floor, reliable American hardwoods should be at the top of the list. According to HGTV, oak and hickory are just some of the classic American hardwoods that are making a comeback in flooring. As Americans become more economically and environmentally conscious, so does the appeal to buy from sensible, locally-produced American companies that produce beautiful, but responsible, products. Flooring Inc. predicts that “the demand for American Made (and grown) flooring will only increase with with time.”

White Oak, Black Diamond (from the Amelia & James Collection) 

Hickory, Bluff (from the Amelia & James Collection)

Wide Plank Wood

It’s no longer a designer’s secret that wider planks make a room look larger. Wide planks bring a contemporary, sophisticated and luxurious feel to any space and their versatility is boundless. Every species, every color, and every design are enhanced by wide plank flooring, creating a look of abundance throughout the entire space. Designers and manufacturers are seeing an increased demand for even wider and longer planks, indicating that this trend is transitioning into a timeless staple.

Walnut, Butter Nut (from the S&W; Collection)

White Oak, Castle Stone (from the S&W; Collection)

Diagonal / Angled Wood

An interesting new trend that is blazing its way into modern design is diagonal wood flooring. It’s a distinctive way to change things up simply by installing the planks at an angle. It creates a bold, modern look while remaining luxe and eye-catching and while it can cost more for lumber (and often installation), it still produces a dreamy, yet sophisticated result. A diagonal floor may not be to everyone’s tastes, but because it is so unique, it likely won’t quickly become stale.


Herringbone Pattern

Its origins may harken back to short-plank parquet flooring of the 1970s, but this is definitely not your grandmother’s dining room floor.  Today’s super-hot trending herringbone floors typically use longer planks, adding interest and depth to any space. While herringbone may be too bold for those in search of a classic, timeless look, it is a trend that is not likely to disappear soon.

White Oak (from the S&W; Collection)

Satin Finish

Modern homeowners and designers have been leaning more and more towards a less glossy look on floors.  At about 40% lustrous (i.e., shiny), satin finishes are a great middle ground for anyone not ready to go completely matte.  A satin finish may be the perfect choice to give your floors a look that will stand the test of time.

Walnut – No Stain, Satin (from the S&W; Collection)

Matte Finish

To some, matte may seem uninspired and boring, but matte finished wood floors are finally getting their moment in the spotlight. While many homeowners still lean towards a satin finish, matte is growing steadily and appears to be a trend that will be around for a while.

Premium White Oak, Custom Stain, Clear Matte

Random Widths Eurosawn, White Oak, Ultra Matte Finish

Non-Traditional Colors

Neutral-colored wood flooring will always be a staple, but designers and homeowners are continually looking for bold ways to make a room stand out. According to flooring experts, we have only begun to see a glimpse of the many colors possible with wood.  While a non-traditional color on the floor may be considered a bold move by some, for the modern homeowner, it’s just the right thing to stand out from the crowd.

Ash, No Stain (from the S&W; Collection) 

Ash, Silhouette (from the S&W; Collection) 

Hickory, Whitetail (from the S&W; Collection)

Dark Stains

For trendsetters looking to make a bold statement, dark stained wood floors provide an elegant and smooth option that will elevate a room to high society status. Dark floors are absolute showstoppers when done in contrast to stark whites. This look is especially popular in kitchens, where all-white cabinets are at the top of every designer’s plan. Homeowners can expect to see espresso brown, almost black, floors for several years to come.


Eurosawn White Oak, Premium Scraped, Dark Custom   

White Oak, Stout (from the S&W; Collection)

Blonde Finish

While dark floors are gaining popularity, extremely light tones are also trending upward. Light, blonde wood gives a more open and airy look to a space, especially in natural light. Lighter toned floors have the added benefit of easily hiding imperfections, dirt, and fur much better than dark floors. Expect to see this look in more and more homes in the next few years.

Both photos: Hickory, Bluff (from the Amelia & James Collection)

Grey Finish

Grey wood floors were seen as a passing trend in the last few years and experts predicted it would lose steam quickly. However, gray has shown no sign of slowing down, despite its trendy look. Although extreme light and dark tones are the rule, gray is the beautiful exception. Grey is neutral and calming and has been gathering momentum in the past few years, becoming a staple in many homes. Grey doesn’t appear to be going anywhere anytime soon, making it a great choice for anyone looking for something different.

Both Photos: White Oak, Castle Stone (from the S&W; Collection)


While species, finish, and color will encompass the bulk of your wood flooring decisions, don’t stop without also considering texture. Texture helps create depth and captures the natural character and beauty of the wood. Like the frosting on a cake, texture can be the crowning addition to your new hardwood floors. Add texture with brushing, hand-scraping or a combination of both. For a subtle touch, consider hand-scraping just the plank edges to add a unique distinction between each plank.


Hand-scraped wood floors are just that – each plank is textured by hand to give a rustic, natural and unique look. Planks are individually inspected for unique patterns, grain and colorations, and hand-carved and scraped to complement each one’s beautiful marks of individuality. With hand-scraping, your floor will be truly unique to your home.


Wire brushing gives floors a distressed look by opening and enhancing the wood grain, adding texture and character. These scratches give the wood a new style and even hide new scratches, as well as dirt and dust. For obvious reasons, wire brushing is a popular choice for families with pets.

Trends are important and can be useful guidelines when planning a remodel or update. What is most important is to make sure your choices reflect your personal tastes and preferences.

Every newly crafted Shannon & Waterman wide plank floor has its beginnings in our family-owned, old growth forests. For generations, we’ve masterfully managed our forests for true sustainability—ensuring that we always have the mature trees necessary to supply the densely grown, stable, and generously proportioned wood to create the floors of your dreams. In addition, many of our products are FSC® certified.

For a comprehensive look at all that Shannon & Waterman has to offer, visit our samples page on our website here: S&W; Products