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Let's Talk About Floors

Mercer Blog

Local Event: The Celtic Canter 5k + Irish Festival

On Saturday, March 14, 2015, beautiful Historic Downtown Westminster, Maryland is throwing a St. Patrick’s Day themed 5k and family celebration!
The 4th annual Celtic Canter 5k starts at 9am and benefits three charitable foundations:
  • Carroll County Children’s Fund – they give local children with little or no health insurance access to the medical care they need
  • Access Carroll – all donations provide local, low-income citizens quality heath services such as medical care, total dental care, and recovery support
  • Target Community and Educational Services – looks to enhance the lives of those with intellectual and other disabilities with quality, community-based, residential, educational, vocational, recreational, and family support services

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How to Use the Color Grey in Your Home


One of the hottest trends right now is using grey as a neutral.  (In my mind that never changed, grey has always been a neutral, but when someone can explain the thought process behind trends they are going to make a lot of money.)

Most people who are considering using grey are worried that it’ll make a place feel too modern or cool.  Which, if that is what you are going for, it most definitely can.  However, it can also be used in very warm and traditional settings.

It can be used as the main color or as accent color.

You can even mix it with other neutrals (that’s the nice thing about them matching everything)!

There are warm greys (also called taupe), cool greys, light greys, and dark greys.

Try mixing it with a bright color for emphasis.

Accent it with white for crisp lines and a clean feeling that is softer and warmer than black and white.

Look for soft colors that are mixed with grey to get a ‘natural neutral’ like the green walls below or blue walls above.

No matter if you are looking for a soft color scheme…

Or one full of emphasis, grey is a great neutral to work with.

Remember, neutrals are just that: neutrals!  Mix and match, don’t worry, they go with everything!

Though you could also go monochromatic if that is more your style.

Does this help?  Have you used grey in your decorating before?  How did it turn out?  (I’d love to see pictures and hear all about the project!)  Was there anything I didn’t cover?

Have Fun,

Katlin Farrell
As always, if there are any questions (or ideas), please let me know! Katlin@nullMercerCarpetOne.com Facebook.com/MercerCarpetOne Twitter.com/MercerFloors

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[My Work] Hardwood+


I thought that you might like to see a few pictures of projects that I have been able to help with and today let’s focus on my hardwood projects.

natural clear oak wide plank select better engineered

oak hardwood natural wide plank clear select better engineered

The above are pictures of a new natural oak hardwood floor that I helped a client in Hunt Valley choose for their new condo.  It is a select and better grade which means that it has the least amount of variation, mineral streaks, and knots possible in an oak floor.

maple hardwood clear select better plank solid

maple plank clear select better solid hardwood

Take a look at the clear, cherry stained maple plank hardwood in the images above that I helped a client in Eldersburg with.  Maple naturally has very soft graining and while stain tends to even out variation, with the higher sheen of the finish it brings it out a bit more.

handscraped hickory wide plank hardwood engineered floor

What do you think of the above hand-scraped, wide plank hickory hardwood?  I helped a Catonsville client choose this hardwood floor for their new home.  They really liked the richness of the dark stain, the forgiveness of the hand-scraping, and the uniqueness of the wide planks and diagonal installation.  What do you think?

rustic tavern grade birch plank natural hardwood

rustic birch hardwood plank tavern cabin grade natural

What a great way to have a statement floor!  I helped this Ellicott City client choose this natural birch wood flooring.  They really liked the variation of the tavern grade (most variation possible) as well as the brightness it provides to the room.

dark stained tigerwood exotic plank hardwood floor

exotic tigerwood hardwood plank dark stained

A client in Clarksville loved the sophisticated richness of this dark stained tigerwood hardwood floor.  The heavy variation of tigerwood is smoothed out greatly with the dark chocolate stain and the high sheen dresses up the floor like a grand piano dresses up a parlor.

staircase stairway stair refacing railing white spindle

oak stairs railing white spindles custom stairway staircase stair

stair estate railing spindle bullnose custom stairway staircase oak natural white

A Columbia client is thrilled with her new wood custom staircase, railing system, and runner.  Even a  couple weeks after installation she said that she couldn’t believe it was hers.

stained acacia handscraped wide plank hardwood engineered

rustic handscraped hardwood dark stained acacia engineered

exotic acacia hardwood rustic dark stained handscraped

And my personal favorite of this series, the handscraped, wide plank acacia hardwood that a client in Clarksville chose for their 1st floor.  They preferred the smoother and richer look of the darker stain to the high variation of the natural and loved the forgiveness that the hand-scraping provided.

What do you think of these floors?  Do you have any hardwood pictures to share?

Best Wishes,
Katlin Farrell, Flooring Design Consultant
As always, if there are any questions (or ideas), please let me know! Katlin@nullMercerCarpetOne.com Facebook.com/MercerCarpetOne Twitter.com/MercerFloors

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Designing with Texture: Focus on the Floor


I don’t know about you, but I shop by touch: clothes, accessories, finishes, etc…  A habit I picked up when shopping with Mom at an early age is touching anything that catches our eyes on the clothes rack.  (You should see our expressions when we find something horrendous feeling!)  If I’m going to be touching it, I don’t want to cringe when I do.

Texture plays a large role in our lives and, similarly, in our designs from our outfits to our homes.  And t looks like many of you are enjoying my posts on designing with texture (examples: Decorating with Burlap and Decorating with Moldings , Trims, etc).  So, I thought that I would share some of the ways you can design your home using texture while focusing on the foundation of any design: the floor.

The Classics: Hardwood and Stone

No matter if you like the super textured (such as the pebble floor above) or if you prefer clean cut, smooth textures (such as the hardwood floor below); there is a stone, ceramic, porcelain, hardwood, or bamboo option for you.

Here are some other ideas!

Don’t forget to play with visual texture as well with the use of patterns and focal points!

A Softer Touch: Sisals, Loops, Pin-Dots – Oh My!

There are many textures to play with when playing with rugs and carpeting.

You could go big and cushioned with a frieze or modern shag.

You can do a clean cut textured pattern with a cut and loop carpet.

You can try the natural look with a sisal texture (great if you like natural linen type textures such as burlap).

And, of course, there are ways of having fun by combining a couple types of textures.  The photo above showcases a sisal texture with a pattern using different height loops.

Unique Options: Cork, Linen Textures, and more

Now here are some of the fun, wild, and wacky options if you’re looking to add texture to the floor.

Let’s first touch on cork flooring.  You’ll be surprised on how many colors and visual textures it is available in!  Some options will look like a hardwood, while others will stand on their own.  Learn more about cork flooring here.

There are also hardsurface flooring designed to have a linen or cloth like texture.  Mannington’s Adura Vibe is one option that has some very nice color options (plus, great durability).

You can also get a stained and/or textured concrete look (without having to deal with porous and cold concrete floors).

Now, before you get too wild and crazy.  Remember that textures are often more than a visual addition.  Think how it would feel to walk on (the barefoot test is very important!) and I always recommend at least running your hands across the floor some so you know if it would be a functional texture in addition to being a beautiful one.

What fun textures do you have in your home design?  I’d love to hear about the projects you are working on (and see pictures)!

As always, if there are any questions I can help with, please give me a shout!

Warm Wishes,

Katlin of Mercer Floor and Home
As always, if there are any questions (or ideas), please let me know! Katlin@nullMercerCarpetOne.com Facebook.com/MercerCarpetOne Twitter.com/MercerFloors

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2013 Top Color Trends and How to Use Them


Pantone’s done it again.  The color trends they’re forecasting for 2013 are stunning!

Quite a few of those look like they’re pretty bright and bold, right?  Here are some ideas on how to combine them and work them into your home for a fresh yet classic look.


The richness of emerald can be a bit much to handle unless you like lots of color.  So try bringing in a few accessories to accent a neutral pallet like in the picture above of a stylish living room.

However, emerald is a naturally occurring color.  So if you are looking for a big change, why not find an accent wall that could use a good douse of brilliant emerald!

Dusk Blue

What a soothing tone.  This can easily be mixed with all sorts of other naturally occurring colors.  Combine it with other soft, gentle colors (sage green for example) for a relaxing bedroom or bathroom.  Or mix it with some bright oranges or yellows for an energetic design for a sunroom or craft room.

Tender Shoots

A very energetic color, tender shoots is an excellent accent color.  Mix it with white for a bright, modern look.  Or mix it with softer tones for a timeless design.

Greyed Jade

Now there is a sophisticated, fresh color.  Pop a nice, bright shade to create a focal point or use a softer tone to create an airy feel.

Lemon Zest

Soften the bright, bold, and cheerful lemon and brighten that forgotten corner or throw in pops of lemon to add a splash of fun to any area.


Now this should be an easy and fun color to bring into the home.  Classic, neutral, fresh, airy, and yet can be grounded depending on what you mix it with.

Monaco Blue

Here’s another classic neutral.  A brighter version of navy, don’t be afraid to use this color anywhere, esp. if you’re mixing it with white!

Poppy Red

If you’re looking to make a bold statement that can outdo all others, any red is a great option and poppy red is a slightly softer and friendlier shade.  Use it as an accent color in any room.


A bright and cherry color, nectarine is great to be used either full scale like in the dining room above.  Mix it with blues and teals as they are complementary colors!  You can also use it in a smaller scale to bring a splash of personality to any space.

What fun ideas do you have to incorporate these colors into your home?  

Best Wishes,
Katlin, Flooring Design Consultant
As always, if there are any questions (or ideas), please let me know! Katlin@nullMercerCarpetOne.com Facebook.com/MercerCarpetOne Twitter.com/MercerFloors

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