I recently moved into a highrise in Las Vegas. When I first toured the property, it was completely a gray shell still; nothing had been installed. This usually scares people off, but being a designer, I was ecstatic. I could see my vision appearing over the exposed cement and wires. As I started to plan in my head, I realized there were some things I actually really liked about the rough, industrial look. I decided I wanted to keep the concrete floors and work them into my design.
Here I’ll show you a few ways I did it!
Firstly, the struggle of concrete floors is that they’re typically a sign of something being unfinished – so it’s important to show the opposite. I chose to put a stain and finish over my concrete to look a bit more “polished”. Bonus: it makes cleaning so easy!
For me, the best way to make an outlying look work is very intentional juxtaposition. I chose to pair my concrete floors with super glamourous.
Features wise, I used a ton of mirrored tile to reflect light since the concrete can make the space look dark. It’s also a great contrast to the industrial look of the concrete. Similarly, I chose a crystal, modern chandelier. Here, I brought in some velvet oversized chairs paired with vintage leather ones. All elements on top of the concrete I’ve specifically chosen to look the exact opposite for a sort of irony.
Another way to contrast the industrial and unfinished nature of concrete is to go totally clean, natural and modern with other elements. Take a look at the example from Becki Owens below:
I love the use of supernatural unfinished wood and stone with modern clean lines. It’s a perfect compliment to the poured concrete floors.
Speaking of kitchens and concrete, here’s what I did with my own. I used a very dramatic and reflective tile along with a full industrial kitchen. It kind of sticks to the whole industrial feel with the concrete but makes it glamorous. I tied it into the living room with some gold traditional accessories.
Something else I think really helps to blend in concrete floors well is to go with the “deconstructed” look. I had exposed piping on brick facade walls painted white to play this up. It doesn’t have to look as metallic as eccentric as mine either! Here is another example of a fully deconstructed look with concrete floors that is more subtle:
One last thing: concrete is dull. It’s extremely gray and dull and you need to spice it up a bit if you’re going to keep your home looking inviting. I added vibrant touches of color in every room to keep things from looking too gray. It creates a perfect contrast with the gray canvas below.
One other way I really love seeing color introduced on top of concrete floors is with patterned rugs like these you see here. Additionally, the modern and traditional mix is great!