Beautiful marri floorboards!

The title of this post might give away my feelings about our new marri floorboards. I think they’re beauuutiful!

Here’s the scoop: we decided on Standard and Better grade, with the boards 130mm wide and 13mm thick.

Why marri, you ask? I’ll be brutally honest with you – I don’t consider the marri to be a particularly good looking tree. In fact, I’d call it a bit of an ugly duckling, with a face only a mother could love. But the marri is burned forever into my psyche by virtue of the first ever “real” job I got fresh out of uni. (Back in the day, we used to call marri trees by their then botanical name, Eucalyptus calophylla. But then the scientists went and changed the genus to Corymbia. I’m inexplicably bitter about that.) Anyway, back to the point, marri trees are often seen mingled in with jarrah in the forests of the Darling Scarp and South West, which is where I spent a few years mapping dieback disease (Phytopthora cinnamomi).  Luckily, marri isn’t affected by the disease, but it is susceptible to cankers.

Back in those days, marri was considered to be good only for firewood. But our ugly duckling has grown up and is now in hot demand for furniture and flooring, as the beauty of the feature veining caused by the resin is now becoming apparent.

Some interesting facts about marri:

You could be forgiven for thinking that with a disease called Jarrah Dieback, I might like to have jarrah floorboards. But, been there, done that, and I found jarrah too hard to decorate in the style that we want. Sadly, the best photo I can find of the jarrah floorboards in my old house is a picture of a wardrobe containing nothing but a wig on a wire head, which I’d previously used on gumtree in an (unsuccessful) attempt to sell said wardrobe.

So marri it is, and I couldn’t be happier. I’ve been looking at each individual board, marvelling at the differences in colour, tone, veining, and so on. I could stare at it for hours! 

Our site supervisor from Nulook Homes kindly allowed our flooring guys to install the floorboards before handover. From our end, this process has been smooth and means one less thing we have to worry about organising after handover. 

The timeline has been as follows:

20th Aug – Floorboards delivered
21st Aug – Site meeting with Chelsea Flooring
24th Aug – Floorboards installation started
28th Aug – Floorboards installation finished

This part of the installation involved the cutting and gluing in place of the floorboards. Then it will sit until handover, waiting to be sanded and sealed. During the wait, the wood will apparently acclimatise to the humidity. This might see gaps enlarge or diminish in size.

Marri floorboards - waterproofing

This shows the extent of the waterproofing – the floor is painted to just beyond the edge of the doorway.

Marri floorboards - raw and unsealed

Behold the beauty! Marri floorboards in the guest bedroom.

Marri floorboards - raw and unsealed

How the floorboards have been cut and fitted to the window at floor level. Can you see the unfortunate dent in the window frame? (Hint: It’s on the bottom right) Apparently this happens a lot and the guy from Jason Windows comes out and does a massive touch up towards the end of construction.

Marri floorboards - raw and unsealed

Marri floorboards in the master bedroom.

Marri floorboards - raw and unsealed, showing the finish along a sliding door

At the sliding door, we asked them to finish with a strip of wood parallel to the doorway, to give a cleaner finish.

Marri floorboards - raw and unsealed, showing the finish along a doorway, with transition to future tiles.

In the doorways, the boards are finished in a similar way. This makes the transition to the rest of the flooring a bit nicer.

We still haven’t decided on the final finish. I got a call from Chelsea Flooring the other day, and they mentioned that their showroom is being refurbished and should have a display of the different finishes in about a month. So will wait until then.

Also to be decided is the profile of the skirting boards. The front-runner is the half splayed profile, but I’m a bit concerned about the gappiness against the square door frame.

Half splayed skirting board profile

Half-splayed skirting (Source: D&S Hardware)

This profile is quite square, but is saved from being too boring by a thin groove in the top third. This subtly echoes the groove in our Deco internal doors. I’ve seen a similar profile at a display home where someone had inserted a leather strip in the groove – I’m thinking a similar effect could be had by painting the groove black. You’d need a very steady hand though.

Burford Contemporary Skirting (Source: Howdens Joinery Co)

Another contender is a stepped profile, which echoes our trio cornices. I’m not sure how easy it is to find this profile locally though.

Stepped skirting boards that subtly echo the trio cornice (Source: DesignLike)

What timber flooring do you love?


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  1. As always Trixee I learn something new from your posts.
    I love marri – the colours and patterns are stunning.
    Your place is looking lovely and it looks like you are getting pretty close to handover??

    • Thanks Deb – marri is a relatively new discovery for me but I’m just loving it, and the fact that it’s local seals the deal. I’m quietly optimistic about handover but I won’t let myself get my hopes up just yet! Just on the QT though, the cabinets and tiling are due to start soon! That’s when I’ll start believing, I think. And quietly freak out.

  2. Behold the beauty indeed! Timber floors are so timeless. Lovely, Trixee. It all looks very nicely finished. We are having blackbutt (feature grade, so it won’t look that different to Marri) and are also undecided about the finish. I’m trying to avoid a yellow look and too much gloss (which shows dust). I struggled to spot your frame dent – I’m still not really sure where it is! As for the skirting, I prefer the final two options, but then I don’t think plain is boring! Goodness, skirting with a leather strip is completely indulgent – I could go for that!

    • Thanks Jo! I’m also trying to avoid a yellow glossy look. I’ve heard that water-based sealants don’t bring out the yellow, so we will probably go for that one, and a satin finish too. However, I went into Planet Timber once and they had various finishes on display including a simple oil (I think it was lomo oil). I have to say the oil finish was divine to touch, all that texture, I could even be tempted to walk barefoot on that! I must find out more about the oil finishes I think, though I’ll probably end up playing it safe. For the skirting, I prefer the final 2 options as well. Surely the cost couldn’t be that much more?

  3. The colour and patterns of the marri boards are beautiful!

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