Pickled Floor Before-After Refinishing

This pickled floor before-after refinishing project was a lot of work – being a parquet floor with a lot of wear areas, you could say it was one of our “extreme” WornWoodMagic projects, of which you can find other examples of on this site.

White or ‘pickled’ floors are the ONLY kind of floors where we can potentially change the color of the floor.

In this particular case, the floor had areas that were much darker than the other areas.  These very dark, very worn areas had to be lightened as much as possible to build them back up to make them blend in with the rest of the floor areas as much as possible.  For this reason, we found it necessary to lighten the floor color in general.

In the before and after floor refinishing video, it is obvious what areas these were – definite wear patterns.

The other situation was dealing with a lot of water damage to the floor, where the windows in the past had leaked, causing the parquet to darken, separate and swell.  These areas were considerably improved by using the appropriate color floor filler, plus re-staining with an eye to lighten the areas as much as possible.

So, this pickled floor before-after refinishing project was definitely worth doing and certainly a win all around.

Hardwood floor refinishing Virginia Highlands

Hardwood floor refinishing Virginia Highlands is something we’ve been called upon to do a lot, because the vast majority of the homes are older, with great oak and pine floors. Virginia Highlands is an absolutely fabulous area of Atlanta, a few miles from downtown.

If you’d like to watch the before and after video and commentary, here it is:

This particular hardwood refinishing floor job was oak floors throughout, except for the kitchen and a narrow hallway, which were both pine.

As soon as we came in, the potential was obvious: Really nice floors that needed their finish brought up to a level that would bring out the true beauty of the floors.

The owner was really smart – he knew that by putting this small investment in his wood floors that the presentation of his home would really “pop” – and it worked!

You see, when a buyer first walks into a home, that first impression is really important. What we gave him were gleaming floors – not gleaming with a cheap junky finish that wouldn’t last, but with our high-end Bona Swedish finish with a ‘satin’ sheen. So what you got was this ‘look’ that blended perfectly with the rest of the house – understated beauty, which fits in perfectly with the Virginia Highlands area.

And the best part about it was that that first impression went on, and on, and on, throughout all the rooms, because every room except some of the bathrooms had wood floors, and that special gleam was there throughout.

There were two major challenges, though, for our hardwood refinishing Worn Wood Magic method, ones that I’m pretty sure no one else would have been able to handle.

First of all, the kitchen floor was absolutely raw – literally raw – it had no finish on it whatsoever. And, being a kitchen and the focal point for traffic for the entire house, the floor had gotten dirtier and dirtier and the wood had gotten darker and darker in the traffic areas.

This is a serious situation, especially when it comes to pine floors, because pine wood is so soft and open-grained. This kitchen floor had been pounded for decades, and we were there to turn it around in a day. But as you can see from the pictures and the video, we did it!

We literally had to custom blend two different colors of our waterbase stain, just for the kitchen.
Virginia Highlands hardwood floor refinishing before






KITCHEN in PROCESS: lots of dirt to lift out!!
Hardwood wood floor refinishing in Virginia Highlands dirty!






Hardwood floor refinishing Virginia Highlands kitchen






There was one other detail that was frustrating but had become part of the character of the wood, and there wasn’t much we could do about it. What it was, was a small area just outside a shower enclosure in one of the bathrooms. As you can see from the pictures, the small area was obviously where a bathmat had been for years. It also was clear that the bathmat had had a rubber backing to it, so it ate into the finish on the wood floor a bit and it also caused the wood floor underneath the rubber bathmat to age into a much different character than the rest of the surrounding wood.

As you can see, the rubber-backed bathmat caused the wood underneath to turn a different color. This was not something we could do anything about, because color changes of this type are very far down into the grain of the wood and the only way to change and blend in the color would have been to completely sand down the entire floor to bare wood – and that’s not something we do.

So, we had to just explain this and also point out that whoever bought the house would also have a bathmat there at all times also because it is the first step out of a shower directly onto a wood floor – and putting a bathmat there completely masks the problem (how do you like my virtual bathmat? lol)

A very difficult issue that we addressed as best we could was an area in the bathroom where mats had been on the floor for so long that the floor was of a completely different character in those areas:
Hardwood wood floor refinishing in Virginia Highlands bathroom floor - before





wood bathroom floor






No Doubt there will ALWAYS be a Bath Mat there –
Notice how placing a (virtual) bathmat in the area pretty much eliminates the difference:
wood bathroom floor with bathmat






Then there was this back-entry room leading off of the deck, which surprisingly enough was in even worse shape than the kitchen was:

This was because of water being tracked in directly from the deck, and what it looked like dogs had at one time been tracking in lots of mud and dirt and scratching down and wearing out the floor. Plus there was new wood installed along an edge of the room, and we needed to match and blend the old and new wood as best as it possibly be done.

Dennis did his faux thing to make it blend, and made about three different stain colors just for that room. It can be frustrating and ironic sometimes to work on floors in this kind of shape and in this situation, because it was such a small area and yet to do it right and make it look nice enough to blend with the rest of the house, it took almost as much work in that small area as it did the rest of the house!

“Breakfast nook” which had new wood installed that was a different species of wood than that adjacent to it, and the color and the grain of the installation came nowhere close to the original wood:




Wood floor breakfast nook after






This Virginia Highlands hardwood wood floor refinishing job really was a major work, with several different challenges we had to overcome as best as possible with this floor – 3 different kinds of wood, floors that had been under rugs vs. those that had not, extreme wear areas, new wood installed next to very worn wood, wood that had been under rubber mats in a bathroom (cured differently), etc.

Plus the floor in the worn areas was full of dirt and grit and we had to build it up from a completely raw state but it all turned out well and we’re proud of our work – just love how that subtle gleam comes through in the pictures and video of this Virginia Highlands hardwood wood floor refinishing job!