What wood you choose?

Published: July 7, 2016 Silva Ridge Byron Bay timber living room Silva Ridge Australian Species in "Byron Bay Spotted Gum"

Timber boards or timber-look products are effortlessly stylish and the options are endless. Each configuration, style and size lends itself to a different look and feel and should be just as much a consideration as the type of timber or stain. The width size can impact the illusion of size of a room, while different configurations or patterns of timber can change the feel and ambiance of the interior. Certainly trends and current interior fashions play a large role in dictating what many consumers select, however there are many options to consider.

Board width

Currently we are seeing in fashion a tendency to lean towards a wider board style which suits many of the more contemporary and new home builds. This style works well with the Australian interior, where large open plan spaces hold the bigger scale beautifully. Wider boards mean less line and pattern and it doesn’t impact the selection of other finishes or decorative elements. Wider boards can also be appropriate in smaller rooms or spaces because of this. Consider a smaller space with less lines created by the boards itself- an unusual concept to get your head around because the scale may feel “wrong”. However fewer boards require less joins and detail which can clutter the space.

Narrow boards are a classic option. They will never go out of fashion and they sit beautifully in period properties or newer builds which lean to a more classic aesthetic. They tend to be more formal in what they contribute to the look and feel of a space. They also work particularly well if in a herringbone or chevron pattern.

cape view hybrid flooring bedroom bench seat Barossa spotted gym Cape View Australian Species in "Barossa Spotted Gum"

Board direction

Board direction is so important in a space as it can influence the way we move in a room or impact how large and small it can feel. Often the way the boards should be configured is straight forward and obvious, although there are other options to consider, such as installing the boards in a diagonal direction. This can add a dynamic and unexpected element to the space. Obviously this is a more courageous interior design move and it won’t be suitable in every space, however in the right application it can look fantastic!

Sometimes architectural features or restrictions of the space can be the deciding factor when choosing which direction to run the boards. For example, a long hallway will generally see the boards running length ways, following the lines of the hallway itself. From there, abutting rooms will naturally take on the same direction as the hallway. Try to think about the flow of spaces and how you wish to move around the home. If the boards feel like they are “blocking” the flow between spaces, they most likely are.

Board direction can also lead our eye to a certain point or feature in the home, such as in the hallway (again!). Laying the boards lengthways draws our eyes to the end of the hallway and what is beyond this transitional space.

Integral laminate lounge room flint leather sofa Integral in "Flint"

Board pattern and configuration

There are many options for board configurations and really this comes down to responding to space itself (i.e. what’s most appropriate in terms of the dimensions and the other design features) and what look and feel you’re trying to achieve in the space. Is it chic or classic? Is it contemporary? Is it French Provincial? All of these factors can help the decision-making process. The following are some common configurations which you could consider.



This is the most common style of configuration and is seen in many installations, both residential and commercially. It is timeless in its appearance and suits a broad range of homes. It’s a casual and effortless look.

Burra Australian Species Ground 1500 x 1500 A staggered pattern


This is a classic style which is making a resurgence in current interior design trends. It sits back beautifully with more traditional interiors which creating an interesting and sophisticated contrast to newer more contemporary interiors as well. A stunning zig zag design works best with a narrow style board. It can also be configured in a square pattern, where smaller blocks of linear panels are laid to create a larger herringbone design. This is a very dominate design style and will be the feature of a space.

vinyl promenade in sintra herringbone pattern. Promenade in "Sintra"- Herringbone

Ship's deck

This style is a very consistently formatted layout, with all joins in the same area to create a streamlined look. It is particularly helpful if you are hoping to create a more simplified look in a busy interior or maintain symmetry and balance. This works best when utilizing a wider board.

ship's deck configuration Ship's deck configuration

Basket weave

A character-filled design which intricately weaves and plaits boards to create a distinct pattern. This is a dynamic design, creating movement and interest throughout the home- but is certainly not for the faint-hearted. It works well when working towards a French inspired interior or a more decorative aesthetic.

basket weave configuration Basket weave


The wicket style is straight, perpendicular boards with a simple border around it. This European look is great when you are attempting to define spaces within an interior or zone larger, open plan areas, such as between a dining space and kitchen. This design requires a lot of thought as it can dictate placement of furniture and restrict re-arranging at a later time.

Wicket configuration flooring styles Wicket configuration


As discussed in board direction, this unique approach to configuring the boards is a great way to create a dynamic look and feel to an otherwise plain interior. It can also distort and change the perception of space, in particular, stretching smaller spaces to appear larger than they already are.


This is a gorgeous geometric pattern which has been around for many years. In recent times we have seen this pattern re-interpreted in many areas of design, from textiles to rugs and homewares. It is intricate and unique, while being tasteful and European in its aesthetic.

Chevron style configuration Chevron configuration

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