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A Guide To Deciding Which Floor To Pair With Knotty Pine Walls

As a classic Building material, knotty pines have been used to give houses a rustic design for decades. And the fact that each board has a tree’s personality, matching knotty pine walls with the right flooring can be pretty challenging. So, after thorough research, we prepared the following guide to decide which floor to pair with knotty pine walls to help make your search easier.

Knotty pine wood is a unique wooden building material with a decorative distribution of knots used in interior décor. It is a straight-grained board characterized with reddish-brown to yellow color and medium texture.

Knotty pines were quite popular in the 1950s, and many renovators have been re-popularizing them over the last few years. So in this article, we will show you which floors pair perfectly with knotty pine walls, and how to choose the right floor for your home.

Which Floor Pairs Well with Knotty Pine Walls?

Knotty pine wood is a kind of timber that is typically used to construct homes with western or rustic themes or a country accent. These boards have massive defects or knots that create a striking pattern when used on walls, cabinets, or floors, which many homeowners find beautiful. Knotty pine is ordinarily available in various forms ranging from decorative beams and columns to wall paneling.

Knotty pine was quite popular in the 1930s, 40s, and 50s, but its popularity has declined over the years, with the only places using these materials being used are cabins. But over the last few years, many homeowners have turned to knotty pines to improve their interior decors. And that is because it can be the inspiration for their house’s entire style.

And since it’s associated with coziness and warmth, the rustic-cabin designs are pretty easy to sell. This material can help bring warmth to millions of homes, even those situated in the country’s coldest part. But for you to finish the design, you have to match it with the right type of floor.

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Luckily, multiple floors complement a knotty pine wall, but this will depend on which style you want to achieve.

How to Pick the Best Floor to Pair With Knotty Pine Walls

Knotty pine is a dominant and exciting visual component in any home. Therefore, you must pair it with a floor that complements the knotty pine walls. After all, your main goal is to let the knotty pine walls stand out.

Plus, you don’t need your flooring material to be similar to your walls. After all, the similarity can mess up your interior décor, making it hard for anyone to notice the walls first when they enter your home. Therefore, there should be a unique visual separation between the flooring material and the walls, meaning that the contrast of patterns and color is adamant.

There are very few types of floors that can pair perfectly with knotty pine walls. Some of these flooring materials are:

Hardwood Flooring

Hardwood flooring can be a great option that can enhance the natural wooden tone in the house. Luckily, there are numerous options to pick from, but you must find a balance between the walls and the floor. One of the most common mistakes most homeowners make is matching their hardwood floor to the knotty pine walls.

Unfortunately, you can never find a hardwood that matches perfectly with your knotty pine walls. And the only thing that can help your space take shape is visual separation. Shoe moldings and baseboards can help you create this concept.

Luckily, numerous hardwood species choose from, with the most popular options being maple, ash, oak, and hickory. All the hardwood species have their unique properties and visual differences. So make sure you pick a floor that fits your budget and lifestyle.

How to Choose an Ideal Hardwood Flooring to Match With Your Knotty Pine Walls

Selecting the best hardwood floor for your space is not as easy as picking the preferred grain or color. There are numerous things you must consider when picking the right hardwood floor for your space. Some of them include:

  • Location: the location of the room and the level of traffic it receives will help you determine the properties the hardwood material will need.
  • Maintenance: simplicity and frequency of resealing, repairability and durability, ease of cleanliness, and daily maintenance vary with each tree species.
  • Installation: glue down, nail down, or floating
  • Durability: scuff and scratch resistance, strength, stain resistance, and waterproofing.
  • Style: all the different wood species and flooring types have their aesthetic appeal.
  • Budget: the price of installing hardwood flooring varies with wood species and flooring type, so you should always strive to remain true to your budget.  

Types of Wood Flooring

There are numerous wood-look and flooring hardwood options available that can help transform your space. So if you are remodeling on a budget, you should consider the wood-look laminate, but if you plan on introducing history to your home, you should try the high-end, hand-scraped options. You can also opt for high-quality engineered wood if you’re looking for the middle ground.

  1. Solid Unfinished Planks

These unfinished planks are genuine hardwoods that are generally extracted from the tree and used without factory finishes. Therefore, you can install the unfinished solid planks in your home and custom finish them. Unfinished solid flooring comes in a wide range of widths, textures, and species.


  • Compared to prefinished planks, Its bevels are less visible
  • Can be finished and sanded separately after being installed
  • You can apply the sealant to the entire floor after installing them


  • Unfinished solid flooring will need resealing sooner than the other types of wood flooring material.
  • Labor-intensive
  1. Solid Prefinished Planks

The solid finished planks have a baked-on factory finish; therefore, they have a resilient finish and uniform appearance. These planks and strips are usually cured using UV lights and coated with numerous layers of aluminum-oxide-infused polyurethane. This process produces an excellent finish that will last for a very long time. (5)


  • Durable multi-layer finish
  • Less labor and faster installation process since it already finished
  • It provides a more uniform look that complements your knotty pine walls


  • Susceptible to warping and moisture damage
  • Seams and bevels are more obvious
  1. Reclaimed Hardwood Planks

Compared to the other types of hardwood flooring, the reclaimed planks have a unique charm. Generally made from the innermost part of the hardwood, this type of flooring will introduce history to your space. And since there are very few companies supplying reclaimed hardwood planks, this type of flooring will leave your home with a unique type of floor, making it an excellent conversation point.


  • Environmentally friendly
  • Scarce
  • Unique weathered appearance


  • Costly
  • Limited supply: you might not get enough planks to cover your entire house
  1. Hand-Scraped Planks

Hand-scraped boards work perfectly with traditional-style houses and farmhouses. These planks are known for producing a unique rustic finish thanks to their weathered appearance, which includes dents and scrapes.


  • Easy to maintain
  • An excellent option for homes with kids and pets
  • The minor scuffs and damages add character


  • Costly
  • Requires professional installation
  1. Engineered Wood Flooring

Unlike the conventional hardwood extracted straight from trees, engineered hardwood is more complex, made up of numerous layers. The inner layers of the engineered floors are made from hardwood, high-density fiberboards, or plywood, while the outermost parts are hardwood veneers. Many professionals have argued that the core layer of engineered hardwood is more stable than regular hardwood. (6)


  • You can install it with a reliable heating system
  • Resistant to water damages and warping
  • Durable


  • Susceptible to scuffs and scratches
  • Prone to fading
  1. Wood-Look Laminate Flooring

This type of flooring isn’t wood, but it’s an excellent affordable option for remodeling a home on a tighter budget. It is printed plastic that resembles wooden planks and adheres to a plywood base or high-density fiberboard. Therefore, you can get a unique wood-look laminate flooring that can pair perfectly with your knotty pine walls.


  • Laminate flooring is the most affordable option available
  • Uniform and neat
  • Easy to clean
  • Requires minimal maintenance


  • It’s easy to tell that it’s not wood
  • Susceptible to water damage

Types of Hardwood

After picking the flooring type for your space, the next step is picking the suitable wood species. When choosing the best hardwood species, you should consider maintenance, cost, grain pattern, and color. It would be best if you also considered the hardness of the tree species selected, which is usually determined by the Janka hardness scale.

The harder the wood, the higher the number, and for a reliable hardwood floor, you should look for a wood with a rating of about 1,000. Some of the most common hardwood species that pair with knotty pine walls are:


Hickory’s measurement on the Janka hardness scale is about 1,820, and it’s harder than maple, oak, and ash. Therefore, it is a long-lasting and durable option that can withstand high traffic, moisture, and damages. It’s lighter in color than most hardwoods; therefore, it can be stained and waxed to improve appearance or made to match perfectly with your knotty pine walls.


Numerous subspecies of an oak tree vary in hardness, with the hardness measurement of live oak being 2,680 and white oak (1,360). Its color ranges from dark red to bleached white; therefore, you can pick a subspecies that complements your space.


White ash has a similar hardness as the white oak on the Janka hardness scale. And being flexible, it can tolerate humidity and temperature fluctuations. Plus, it’s comfortable to walk on and age well.


Hard maple is harder than white oak and ash as its hardness rating is 1,450. Maple is resistant to damages like scrapes and scuffs from the table and chair legs. It is an excellent option for modern homes because of its open grain pattern and lighter texture.


Strand-woven bamboo is one of the hardest options available, measuring 3,000 on the Janka hardness scale. It is eco-friendly, widely available, and sustainable as you can easily replant it after being harvested.

Choosing the Best Hardwood Floor for Your Knotty Pine Walls

While matching the colors of the walls and floor may be impossible, matching the tone can help create a cohesive design among numerous kinds of woods. A darker shade inspires traditional cozy vibes while lighter materials than the wall give a contemporary look. For example, black hickory or cherry can give you a darker neutral effect.

Hardwood floors are the best option for knotty pine walls as most available options complement the wall. Other than durability and flexibility, which play a crucial role in longevity and scratch resistance, you should consider the color of the floor. So make sure you consider the grain intersect and optics of the colors.

The wood grains play a crucial role in ensuring that the walls don’t clash with the floor. Remember, knotty pine planks have a busy texture thanks to their numerous knots and ribbed paneling. So it would be best if you considered a floor with subtle grains like maple or birch.

A busier grain can compete and even upstage your wall, which you have worked hard to showcase. On the other hand, a darker tone will hide a busier grain while a lighter color will show it.


A carpet is an excellent option that can leave any room with a comfy feel while breaking the hard-edged surfaces, thanks to its soft surface. Carpets are the best option for covering an existing wooden floor with signs of wear and tear. A small rug can help cover a sad and damaged spot on a lovely floor.

If it’s wall-to-wall carpeting you want, you should consider the quality and color of the carpet. Luckily, the right carpet can complement your knotty pine walls and help keep your home warm.

Unfortunately, selecting the right carpet to pair with knotty pine walls is the most difficult decision you will ever make when remodeling your home. And that is because there are several options available that vary in color, fiber type, quality, and style.

Choosing the Right Carpet for Your Home

There are numerous factors you have to consider when looking for the right carpet for your space. And some of these factors are:


A considerable percentage of the knotty pine trees are reddish-brown to yellow with orange undertones in color. So when looking for the right carpet, you should stay away from the ones with warm colors. Instead, it would be best to look for carpets with contrasting colors to help the walls stand out.

And if you have to use warm colors, you can introduce orange and red sparingly to ensure that the house doesn’t become monotone or washed out. It would be best to look for a carpet with neutral colors like taupe, off-white, or beige to be on the safe side. If you plan on making a bold statement, you should use a green or blue carpet to create an excellent contrast to your warm-colored walls.

You can also do this with the other features in the room, including the cushions and curtains.

Patterns and Designs

Carpets come with a wide range of color combinations and patterns that can help make any room stand out. But when dealing with knotty pine walls, you should avoid carpets with strong color combinations and patterns. After all, the strong patterns can end up clashing with the wall’s natural geometry.

Price of the Carpet

The cost of the carpet varies with the quality and type of carpet. You can get a corded foam-backed carpet for as low as $2.99 per square meter or a high-end option for about $100 for the same size. Plus, polypropylene carpets are cheaper than wool-rich carpets; therefore, you should always stick to your budget.

Type of Carpet: Turfed or Woven

Generally, there are two types of carpets: turfed and woven. The woven carpets are a labor-intensive process that includes the decorations and colors woven together instead of printed on its surface. Woven carpets are approximately 80 to 100% wool, and they can either be plain or patterned.

On the other hand, turfed carpets are the most popular choice thanks to the styles and designs. Turfed carpets are prepared by inserting tufts into a backing fabric with a needle. During this process, the locking, pile, and backing yarns are looped together.


When selecting the correct type of material for the carpet, the only consideration you should consider is synthetic or natural. These types of carpets have numerous benefits on their own; therefore, your decision will be based purely on preference. Acrylic is an affordable alternative to wool; unfortunately, it’s not that common.

On the other hand, nylon is resistant to tear and durable, making it an excellent option for fighting stains. Wool is the only natural material used to make carpets. It is stain-resistant, durable, and eco-friendly.

How Do You Know Which Floor to Select?

The best method for getting the correct type of floor that will look great next to your knotty pine walls is by using an actual sample. Luckily, numerous flooring stores and showrooms provide decent-sized samples which you can take home and try and see if they fit. Hold the samples next to the wall and see if they match or not.

Confirm that the floor’s texture, tone, and color are the right combinations that compliment your knotty pine walls. Try and observe the samples on the floor under a wide range of lights and see how the light affects them. Ensure you watch them under the natural light fixture and confirm that the floor you choose complements your knotty pine walls.


What Flooring Pairs With a Knotty Pine Wall?

Knotty pines have ribbed paneling, numerous knots, and busy texture. Therefore, the best option is a wooden floor with a subtle grain, including maple and birch. Another option is high-quality carpets with less intense patterns and color combinations.

Are Knotty Pine Walls Outdated?

Knotty pines have never been outdated. The richness of knots, streaks, and colors that come with these materials can give your home a relaxing and rustic charm that you can never match. Knotty pines are used to make decking, walls, floors, molding, and furniture.

Can You Match Knotty Pine Walls and Floors?

Knotty pine floors and walls can be very overwhelming for your unique space. Therefore, you should pick a wooden floor that will help pick the dark knots on your walls. Or select an option that pairs with the golden grains of your knotty pine walls.

Final Thoughts

Knotty pine walls have numerous distinctive features like color, streaks, and knots; therefore, pairing it with just any floor material can be pretty challenging. And matching this wall with the wrong colored floor with the wrong pattern combination can be catastrophic. Luckily, numerous hardwood floors and carpets can complement your walls, but make sure you get a durable and high-quality option.