Interlocking Floor Tiles & The COVID-19 Lockdown
Thank G-d we are digging ourselves out of this challenging year with the advent of the COVID-19 vaccine and effective treatments for this dreaded pandemic. What will we each have to show for our experience in lockdown mode? Hopefully, we have grown spiritually and have realized that family is the most important thing in life. Those of us lucky enough to be in isolation with our families have experienced many ups and downs, hopefully more ups than downs.
Some creative people have put their minds into making their homes a more comfortable and organized space since they have been spending so much time at home. For most of us with our busy lifestyles, we tended to spend more time out of the house than in it. Those of us who worked or for children and young adults who were in school, the home was just a place to lay our tired bodies and grab a quick meal and shower. Because of the lockdown, many individuals have overhauled their garages, playrooms and basements making them into real venues of activity. Who would have time to renovate on a budget when we were busy at the office? If someone did renovate these areas, it was often at the advice of a professional decorator or organizer. However, who knows better than you what your family needs?
My sister is a playroom/basement decorator. She does consult with the person who hires her and tries to design the area that she is decorating with major input from the homeowner. However, she is very artistic, and her own style can be noted in all her creations. Under ordinary circumstances pre-coronavirus, a working mother would not be able to figure out how to make the best use of the space in question. However, living day in and day out inside the home, a mom should be able to figure out exactly what is needed for her child’s (or children’s) play space.
Samantha Vafiadou, a thirty-one-year-old professional from Huntington, Long Island always enjoyed surfing the internet or shopping in stores for clothes. This was indeed her favorite pastime like many other women her age. All this changed in the wake of the pandemic. Spending her money on clothes, has now taken a back seat to her new frontier which is the living space of her home. Fashion has been put on hold and today her house is her priority.
Sloan Tichner, 58, a fashion executive put her changing lifestyle this way. She, “translated dressing for people on the outside to dressing my home on the inside”. Sloan was lucky that she was able to quarantine together with her married children and four granddaughters aged three and under. Her Brookville, Long Island home was transformed into a fantasyland while the entire extended family lived together in isolation from February through Labor Day.
With family home improvements skyrocketing during the pandemic, home renovators are looking for the most practical yet beautiful supplies. Updated floor coverings such as interlocking floor tiles are the go-to for many young home residents in their quest for the latest, shiniest, and most durable flooring. For many parents, the basement or playroom has become the new playground.
Can you imagine that according to Porch Group (a home renovations resource), more than 76% of United States homeowners have done some type of home improvement project since the pandemic began? House Beautiful magazine’s digital director, Hadley Kelly says this statistic is not very surprising since families are staying home so much.
Sloan Tischner’s, playroom has turned into a teaching space as well as an exercise room. Her bunch of toddler granddaughters would end up spending a year learning and playing in what she called, “Grandma’s Playroom”. Not only does her renovated playroom have swings, a slide and a climbing wall but also a reading room for studying and Zoom classes, and an arts and crafts corner.
Vafiadou Ceglia, calls her revamped dining area, “a quarantine haven”. As many other millennials like herself, she rarely used her dining room except for holiday dinners. Socializing with friends was mainly at restaurants even if they had to drive to meet them. Vafiadou never thought of using her dining room just for her own small family. Now they use the dining room all week long since they are cooking for themselves and enjoying new recipes.
How can amateur home renovators be assured that they are doing it right? It is particularly important not to penny pinch when buying supplies. Moderately priced supplies can still be high quality. According to most decorating experts the way to start is from the floor up. Paint colors can then be blended to match the floor as well as fabrics and shades. Since the floor is the locale that will get the most abuse it is the most important investment of all. For a children’s playroom anything else can be matched to the floor once you have the floor purchased. Some parents believe in using colorful carpet that can be laid on top of a basic floor. This type of flooring looks very pretty until there is a mishap which tends to happen with active children. Whether it is at the arts and crafts area or near the bathroom, accidents involving water, paints or other liquids will happen. A washable floor is more sanitary and practical than carpet.
Interlocking plastic floor tiles can be easily installed on top of most floors and are so easy to keep clean. If you are thinking of dividing the room into separate stations, then each station can be a different color tile. For example, Sloan Tischer created a “pink room” where her granddaughters dress up in Disney costumes. Boys will go crazy over spaces designed with the colors of their favorite team or cartoon character. If the home is a ranch style, the basement will be quite expansive. How about a jogging track right on the floor? The track can be done in a contrasting color to the rest of the floor. At no added expense, locking tiles can be bought in different colors and textures. There is no end to the creativity that these tiles introduce to the home renovator.
The advantages of interlocking PVC tiles are endless, from safety, beauty, and durability these tiles say yes to all these features. What is more, the installation of this type of tiles can be a family project too.
Now that most of us can resume shopping in stores, the first step to this family project is to invite the entire family on a tile hunt. Once in the store there will be discussions and disagreements as to which textures and colors to purchase. The first lesson for the family to learn is compromising. Maybe one child can pick the first color and another child can pick the alternate color. In fact, there are so many colors and textures to choose from when it comes to interlocking flooring and once the choice is over the fun will begin. Won’t the children want to begin installing the tiles immediately? Wait, first the playroom or basement needs to be emptied. Once there is a goal, the massive task of cleaning out the room becomes easier when there is a specific and beautiful conclusion waiting. This is a great weekend project for the family, and there is something for each age to do. Even a small child can hand over the tiles to the person who is doing the actual PVC interlocking tiles placement.
At the conclusion of this monumental project the satisfaction of each family member is huge. This will also help keep the tiles in good working order since each family member has a stake in the action. Memories are formed as the children will recall which tiles were easier or more difficult to place. Cutting the tiles will be necessary if there is a beam in the room. Also, at the end of a row a tile may have to be sliced in half. These are challenges that give satisfaction to the children who are watching. They will take these lessons with them into their lives as they grow up besides for all the fun of watching a new floor being constructed.
Many years ago, a famous film was created called, “The Wizard of Oz”. The main character, Dororthy, dreamed of leaving her family’s small farm and seeing the world. Her dream came true as she was transported to the land of Oz only wishing to go back home. “There’s no place like home”, she chanted as per instructed by the good fairy.
Yes, we have all learned this lesson during the terrible pandemic. Instead of running away from home every chance we get whether we are children or adults, we appreciate what a warm functioning home has to offer.
This year has been challenging for all in different ways. It has also brought out the best in many. Whether it is the husband who learned how to peel and cut up potatoes or the sister who found out that her brother can be her best friend, we all grew. Thanks to the coronavirus we have rediscovered our own families. The bonus to all this family time is the rediscovery of the pleasures of home. With beautiful playrooms adorned with practical furniture and lock-tiles, many of us have come to realize that there is indeed no place like home.