Let’s talk about planks, baaaaby. Let’s talk about you and meeeee. Let’s talk about all the good times, all the bad times that we’ll see. Let’s talk about planks, baby.
Peel and stick hardwood planks that is:
Yup. After months of dreaming of a laundry room makeover, I took the plunge. I had been planning on using the peel and stick tile similar to what we used on the fireplace makeover, but Brian wasn’t totally digging it.
When I came across these in Lowes last weekend I knew they would be perfect. At $0.98 a piece they were relatively budget friendly too. They come in a box of 30, so I loaded up my cart with 4 boxes (rough estimate, I hadn’t been planning on buying them so I didn’t measure the laundry room floor!) and called it a day.
This is the brand is Style Selections. They are 36″ x 4″ planks with a depth of 2mm. The color I picked was oak. They have lots of other options (including an Antique Oak which was GORGEOUS but was twice the price). Each plank has a “handscraped” texture which makes them look quite realistic.
Let’s quickly rewind to what the basement laundry room looked like before this project began:
Such a dingy, depressing place. Laundry is never going to be fun and exciting. But it would be nice to have a clean, bright room to work in.
The installation of the peel and stick tile was very simple. The most important part is prepping the surface beforehand. Since I was installing these on a concrete basement floor, I had to make sure that all the dust and dirt that was down there was cleaned beforehand. These planks will not stick if there is dirt beneath them.
Using a broom and my trusty wet/dry vac I got the place decently clean in a little under 45 minutes. It still wasn’t perfectly clean, but I figured I could blow the remaining dust out from under each plank as I went.
Each plank has directional arrows on the back to let you know which way to lay it so that the grain is flowing correctly. All you need to do is pull the packing paper off and lay the plank down, making sure that it is pressed tightly against the previous tile. The box suggests that you use a rolling pin to make sure the planks adhere to the ground. I just walked around on them to make sure they stuck. That worked just fine!
Originally I started in the middle of the room as per the box directions. I quickly realized that it would be a better idea to start next to the door as the room wasn’t perfectly symmetrical. I pulled up the few planks that were down and re-positioned them by the door jam:
I staggered each plank for the most natural look. Planks that needed to be shortened were easily cut with a utility knife.
Cutting the planks to go around the poles was a little trickier. I couldn’t get them perfect, but I plan on boxing the pole so I can hide the imperfections with trim at some point.
Despite the room being pretty small, it took me 6 hours in total to lay all the flooring down. If you are going to take on this project yourself, I recommend using something to lie on that will protect your knees (such as a gardener’s kneeling pad). My knees were bruised and extremely sore after scooting around on concrete for such a long time! My lower back was also killing me after being hunched over for such a long time, so if you’ve a bad back keep that in mind!
That being said, I think the pain was worth it:
It’s already a major improvement. Brian is delighted because he no longer feels the need to re-wash socks when they drop on the ground!
You’ll notice that I even got some white paint and started painting the cinder block walls. I’m planning on dry-walling where I can and painting the door too. The room definitely needs some trim to clean up the edges. The final vision also entails some new shelving and maybe even a cabinet.
I’ll keep you all posted on how the floor holds up, though. So far so good!