Sunday, October 31, 2010

Our Beautiful Concrete Floor

Bedroom Floor with Leather Brown SoyCrete Stain

Floor Closeup

A Preview of the Trimmed-Out Look (the trim won't go in till later today)

Bathroom Floor with Espresso Concrete Stain

I spent all last week laboring over my bedroom suite floor, and at the end of it, I gave birth to a richly varied, stained concrete that warms the feeling of the entire space. As with using any new product in a new context, I worried and fretted over whether I was doing it right. I experimented in the closet first, and it's a good thing, because I don't like the results in there. The second space I completed was the bathroom, which turned out much better, and finally, the big main bedroom, a spacious pallet of color.

The process is multi-step: meticulously scrape all visible remnants of joint compound splats, plaster residue, and structolite off the floor. Sweep and vacuum, leaving as clean a surface as possible. Apply a concrete etcher, to clean and open the pores of the concrete (Ecoprocote EcoEtch), allow to dwell for about 10 minutes, then buff with a floor buffer. This process impressively cleans the floor, which by this point in the house project contains nearly two years worth of construction dirt and activity.

After buffing, vacuum up the wet stuff and rinse, rinse, rinse. Allow to dry. THEN, the fun part. Apply the stain (EcoProcote SoyCrete) with a foam mop, and work into the surface of the concrete. Once dry to the touch, buff with the floor buffer (a rather squirrely machine!) to smooth out the application marks.

A day later, apply the penetrating sealer coat, Acri-Soy. Finally, enjoy the fruits of your labor, and experience the drastic transformation of a blue-gray concrete slab into a lovely, mottled, warm-looking, homey floor.

The Ecoprocote products are a pleasure to work with. Ultra-low VOC, they don't stink, are safe to work around without safety equipment, and clean up with soap and water.

Finish trim details, and MOVE IN. Coming soon, this week.


Ebby Puttence said...

Your floors are so awesome. You did a fantastic job, wow! You must be so happy when you walk into your space. Your entire house is so beautiful...

decorative stamped concrete said...

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ME said...

Just curious how the floors are holding up. Do you ever put a sealer or wax on them?

ME said...

Just wondering how the floors are holding up. Do you ever wax them?

ME said...

Just wondering how the floors are holding up. Do you ever wax them?

Amanda said...

@ ME: They are holding up fine. We only did the AcriSoy Penetrating Sealer. Seems fine for everyday wear and mopping/sweeping/vacuuming. We have had a few issues at the edges of the building with efflorescence (white chalky residue). I think this is about moisture creating salt deposits. The exterior isn't quite waterproof at the boundary of the wall block and the foundation/floor. We also tried a new product on another part of our floor, it's a high gloss sealer, also from EcoProcote. We love this stuff. It looks so shiny. That was really the effect we wanted on the whole thing, this product just came out this past year. I expect in a few more years, the AcriSoy will need reapplication, especially in our highest traffic areas, e.g. in the kitchen, or near the doors. Cheers.

Charlene said...

The floors are absolutely gorgeous! Well done! This is such an inspiration. Any advice? How has the high gloss sealer & stain held up?