new laminate floor.

I promise I’ll get back to more fun and interesting things, like fashion and style, once I get this post out of my system. I just can’t help myself, I’m too excited about my new floor.

You might remember that we had the great flood of 2009 way back in October and I’ve been living with a cement slab for a family room floor ever since.

Well, last week Viktor must have felt guilty about the fact that he bought a horse for Christmas without telling me, so we headed off to Costco to buy a floor. Yippee-o-kai-yay.

Here’s what it looked like before we got started.
And by *we* I mean Viktor.

*We* laid out the tarp.

Like so.

This is what $650 from Costco looks like. Just in case you’re wondering.

We decided to go with laminate that looks like hardwood for a number of reasons, one of which being the fact that the family room is a main thoroughfare of the house, constantly subjected to wet, snowy, and muddy feet. Plus? It was about half the cost.

Precocious was a huge helper in getting the floor installed. Me? Not so much. She got all the boxes opened, handed the pieces to Viktor and helped him snap them into place.

After much measuring and hemming and hawing, the first piece went into place.

Doesn’t it look great already?

Getting to this point only took my team about an hour or so. Measuring, cutting, snapping into place.

Charming was great at inspecting the work, and offering up constructive criticism.

It was at this point I went out to dinner with some old girlfriends and left the crew to get the job done. And how.

Before *we* started laying the floor, I had an idea. I thought it might be fun to paint our names and the date onto the concrete floor, like a time capsule.

Apparently Viktor was on the same wavelength because when I got home I found this photo in my camera.

Charming was inserting a note underneath the floor with the date, our respective ages, and a note to any new owners of the home {should we ever move} telling them how much we loved living here. It was really sweet.

They got a lot done while I was gone. I think from now on, I’ll make it a practice to disappear during home renovating projects. They clearly didn’t need my help.

The next morning Viktor quickly got to this point.

And then it was done.


Isn’t it beautiful?

Once again, here’s the before:

And after.

It only took $650 worth of flooring from Costco, a day’s worth of work out of Viktor, and some child slave labor.

Not too shabby.

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Hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. I do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, home remodel projects, and cool DIY crafts you totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!


  1. Jenny :

    I'm a new reader, and so glad I found your blog! Also, I think we have the same floor! Is that Mohawk Laminate in Bourbon Pecan? It's delightful! :)

  2. Donna :

    It's beautiful! It really warms the room up from that cement slab. Hope you love it.

  3. Sara :

    You new floor is simply BEAUTIFUL! Love it!!

  4. Kalli Ko :

    it's fantastic. excellent choice.

  5. Boston Mamas :

    Gorgeous! Yay for home improvement!

    (And look how well I'm doing now that I have you in my Outlook RSS…) :-) xo Christine

  6. PMG Smith Family :

    I agree with everyone, that new flooring is gorgeous! It totally warms up the space and makes the blue on the walls look even more fantastic! Kudos to you! :o)

  7. MiaKatia :

    It is LOVELY!!! That is how I like my home improvement projects to go as well, disappear for a while and wha-la they are done ;)

  8. Jen :

    That is gorgeous. I love our laminate floor. It is so easy to maintain.

  9. Camille :

    Fabulous! You've got some hard workers on your hands there! Kudos to all of them! It looks absolutely gorgeous!

  10. Emily :

    You chose wisely–it's beautiful and goes so well with your fabulous walls. And for high-traffic areas, laminate is great. I cringe every time my kids track in snow and walk through our laundry room, which has real hardwood floors. Let's hope they can stand up to the abuse!

    And I always love when "we" really means my husband when talking home improvement projects, though I do remember painting baseboards and trim in our basement while about 6 or 7 months pregnant!

  11. Corey :

    AND a horse. Don't forget the horse. Were it not for the horse, the floor might never have happened!

  12. The Dragonfly :

    It looks really, really fantastic! I'm keeping the Costco option in the back of my head for a future basement redo. :)

  13. erin :

    So pretty, now it will feel warm and cozy. Love the wall color as well.

  14. Kami :

    I love the color you chose, espesh with the blue. Good Work Viktor and team!

  15. Deb :

    LOVE it! It's beautiful!

  16. Petit Elefant :


    I'm so glad you found me! It's Harmonics Antique Hickory and I LOVE it!


    I do love it, it totally warms up the room!


    Thank you, it makes me so happy to look at.


    It already does feel so much cozier. Isn't that blue awesome? It's all coming together now.

    Kalli Ko,

    Thank you my dear, it looks awesome all together.

    Boston Mamas,

    Yay for home improvement indeed! And I love that you're up on the blogs with your RSS.

    PMG Smith,

    Thank you, I love the way the colors go together, they show each other off!


    I'm trying to love the fact that all our projects take forever. It makes me appreciate them all the more when they get done.


    I'm so glad we went with laminate, even though I was vacillating. It's so much better with the wet!




    They did a good job didn't they? I usually get right in there with the mix but this time they didn't even need my help!


    I really am happy we went with laminate instead of wood. There's already been so much snow tracked through the room!

    Whimsical Creations,

    Thank you, me too!


    We kind of went out on a limb with it but we're SO happy with the results!


    Good point! I won the lottery this Christmas with a horse AND a floor.

    The Dragonfly,

    Seriously, I'm eying every floor in our house wondering about a renovation, it looks amazing!


    Me too! I really thought it wouldn't happen for another 6 months!!


    Don't the two look awesome together? Loving the combo.

  17. Naomi :

    looks great! nice job, team elefant!!!

  18. jen :

    that looks great!!! and i love the color of the walls too — leaving a note is such a sweet and unique idea — we drew on a wall in our house when we were kids when my parents were putting up some wallpaper – drew an airplane for some reason and when my parents replaced the wallpaper, twenty some years later, my grandpa's drawings were on there too and he had since passed away so it was so neat to have that surprise.

  19. Krista :

    Really gorgeous! I'm going to have my neighbor check out your photos, as they just bought the same flooring from Costco to do their basement!

  20. Miranda :

    Totally gorgeous. I'm so happy for you!

  21. Alison :

    I love your floor! *You* did a great job! May I ask how big the room is in square feet? I have a carpet in our office/toy room that I want to replace and am trying to get an idea for cost and difficulty. Thanks!

  22. Petit Elefant :


    I think I'll excuse myself from all future projects, they didn't need me, at ALL.


    I love that he did that without me. The note was so sweet and heartfelt, in my daughter's handwriting. Such a sweet gesture.


    It was just over 200 sq. ft. Not big at all, I think 220 total. It would be perfect for a small room, couldn't be more than a couple hundred dollars if you have the tools.


    Wasn't that a cute idea? I love that it's inconspicuous but WE know it's there.

  23. Lisa :

    I love it! It looks pretty pretty.

  24. Aimee @ Smiling Mama :

    Stunning! I love that your kids left a note and STRONGLY agree that is it best to leave the house when a home improvement project is taking place!!

  25. Kristen Duke Photography :

    what floor did you have before? wanted to look up the flood in october…can't find it.

  26. Petit Elefant :


    Thank you, I love it too!


    Totally worth it. I was bracing for around $1,000 so I'm thrilled! I wanted to paint the fireplace but it's a working wood burning stove fireplace and I'm afraid of the black getting all over it. Am I missing something?

  27. Erin :

    $650 well spent! the floors look lovely. are you still considering painting the fireplace?

  28. Petit Elefant :


    I linked to it in the post, the title is called *Cloudy with a chance of Meatballs* or something like that. We had a big fat cement slab!

  29. Azúcar :


  30. Azúcar :

    p.s. if I left the house during a home improvement project, there wouldn't be a home improvement project anymore.

  31. Petit Elefant :


    That's because you ARE the home improvement project.

  32. Petit Elefant :


    We're about to do molding that's thick enough to cover. I'll do a post where I show how we do it, hopefully it will be soon!

    But molding should cover it completely.

  33. KC :

    I am just wondering…how did you finish the edges? I am wanting to do this in our family room and dining room, but don't know what you would do with the edges/coving..?!!

  34. Marie {Make and Takes} :

    Ahhhh! I love it. I need to come see it in person soon!

  35. Petit Elefant :


    It's really pretty in person, I just want to pet it, and love it, and snuggle it.

  36. janaemadsen :

    what flooring did you use? I like it

  37. pen.ny :

    Looks GREAT! So in love with your blog header. Adorable:)

  38. b. :

    It looks BEAUTIFUL! And I LOVE the color of the walls!

  39. Michelle :

    Quite an upgrade from the concrete! I feel your pain, we flooded two months after we moved in. What fun, but it got us new hardwood compliments of the insurance company so I certainly can't complain!!

  40. amy smart :

    Awesome! I love how it looks with the blue walls. Can't wait to see the redecorated room. After life calms down after Alt of course. :)