Show Stoppers: 2004 NWFA Wood Floor of the Year Winners

Reaching for the Stars

Congratulations to 2004's Floor of the Year Winners

This year, NWFA members chose the winners for all Floor of the Year awards except for the Designer's Choice awards, which are chosen by judges from the American Society of Interior Designers.

The Master Division is reserved for those who previously have won Floor of the Year awards; those who have not previously won awards are eligible for the Expert Division.

See below for descriptions of all the winners.

Reaching for the Stars Floor of the Year (Expert Division) and Best Residential Design | Scheller Hardwood Floors Inc. (Lemoyne, Pa.)

Reaching for the StarsWhen Mark Scheller took this job, it was understood that due to the client's wish for privacy, the project could never be featured in architectural or design magazines. But Scheller was so confident this floor could be a Floor of the Year winner that he made permission to enter the contest a condition of his taking on the project. At the NWFA convention, his intuition proved correct, as he took the stage to accept the trophies for Floor of the Year (Expert Division) and Best Residential Design.

The wood floor had inauspicious beginnings. The client, a wealthy real estate developer, was considering installing prefinished Brazilian cherry plank he had found on the Internet. The supplier put the client in touch with Scheller.

When Scheller visited the job site, he discovered that the home needed more than plain prefinished flooring. The project was part of a sprawling house on the western shore of Chesapeake Bay south of Annapolis, Md., that features extravagant interior features such as a 16-foot waterfall. The client told Scheller that he wanted people "to walk in and say, 'Wow.'" Scheller returned two weeks later with a layout for a custom parquet design involving two different sizes of stars and parallelograms. The client wouldn't approve it without an actual sample area on the floor, so Scheller cut about80 feet of the pattern, and that convinced the homeowner.

The star pattern had been in the works for some time in Scheller's imagination. "I had been wanting to do a pattern like that for years, but I never had a venue," he says, adding that the inspiration came from a suggestion from one of his students at the NWFA Advanced Installation School, where Scheller is frequently an instructor. This home seemed like an appropriate one for the star pattern, as the client had told Scheller of his affinity for telling time by looking at the night sky when sailing around his private island in the British Virgin Islands.

With the initial design approved, Scheller began cutting parquet out of raw lumber—a three-week process. As the project developed, Scheller convinced the client to add actual constellations to the floor. Flame birch was substituted for Brazilian cherry in some of the parquet stars to form Pisces and Aquarius, the birth constellations of the client and his wife, at their respective ends of the dining room table.

Attention to detail was paramount. The pieces of wood in each star or parallelogram were cut from the same board. The large birch stars were book-matched, so each point of the star looks like a mirror reflection of the others, and they were treated with a proprietary process involving caustic chemicals and metallic pigments.

Once the parquet field was laid,the radiating perimeter sunburst was installed, and last, the slot was cut for the border of bent flame birch and wenge. In all, the project took three months. "It was quite challenging," Scheller concedes,adding that breaking down the complex design into smaller tasks made it manageable. "I'm certain I wouldn't have been capable of anything like that if I hadn't had the teaching opportunities I've had [at the Advanced School]," he adds. Now Scheller is taking those skills and looking for the inspiration and the right client for next year's Floor of the Year winner. —K.M.W.

Suppliers listed in boldface are advertisers in this issue.

Sanding: Scheller, Seabaugh's Custom Hardwood Floors | Distributors: Philadelphia Floor Store, Long Floor Distributing LLC | Flooring: Sandy Pond Hardwoods, Brazilian Direct, Wood Flooring International | Filler: Woodwise/Design Hardwood Products | Finish: BonaKemi USA | Nailers: Powernail Company | Adhesive: Bostik Findley | Abrasives: 3M | Sanding Equipment: Clarke American, Festool, Fein, KT Sanders, Galaxy Floor Sanding Machines

Grand Entrance Winner Floor of the Year (Master Division) and Best Job-Site Finished | Endurance Floor Co. Inc. (Miami, Fla.)

Grand EntranceEndurance Floor Co. has once again taken its flair for nature inspired design and uncompromising attention to detail and applied them to create another Floor of the Year winner. This time, Endurance raised its artistry skills to a new level with this rose-themed entryway.

Leonard Hall, owner of Endurance Floor Co., worked with an interior designer and the homeowner to create the initial concept for the floor design. One of the main themes in the home was roses, which the homeowner wanted to incorporate into her floor. Hall was discussing options with the homeowner when he happened to look up and notice her crown molding, which featured an ornate ribbon and bow motif. From there, Hall found the inspiration for the design. "I thought it would be cool if we could just take a ribbon and let it fall all over the floor and just throw roses all over the place," Hall says. To illustrate the idea, Hall bought two dozen roses and scattered them on the floor. The homeowner loved it,and the arduous design and craftsmanship process began.

The first few days of the project involved Hall sketching the design onto the floor. He strategically placed the flowing ribbon over knots in the Australian cypress floor to give it a cleaner look. Next, all of the design elements that were to be inlaid needed to be cut with the scroll saw. With the level of detail that went to each piece, everything but the ribbon was cut off-site. It took two men a week and a half just to create the 36 flowers that adorn the floor. The flowers, which range from a small bud to a blossoming rose, all have distinct characteristics. The birds, butterflies, bumblebees and caterpillars that Hall incorporated into the floor also involved intricate and time-consuming cutting. The most detailed creatures were the birds. Consisting of 80 to 100 pieces of wood,each bird took a day-and-a-half to create.

To add depth and tonal variation, Hall used a traditional woodworking technique called scorching. This process involves dipping the wood into hot sand to create dark tones. "We scorched anything that needed to have a dimensional hue to it …" Hall says. "Anything that created a shadow, we scorched."

With more than 18 domestic and exotic species used to create the realistic flowers and critters in the floor, species selection was crucial. "One of the most challenging parts of any design is to pick the right wood for the right spot," Hall says. He carefully chose species that would give each element the proper texture, tone,grain and iridescence.

With Hall and the Endurance crew logging more than 600 hours of building, cutting, gluing and insetting, Hall says this is the most technically advanced floor he's created. "We just went to another level on this project," Hall says. The homeowner's husband agreed. "He was just amazed by how someone could take a piece of wood and make it look so real,"Hall says. —C.L.

Suppliers listed in boldface are advertisers in this issue.

Distributors: Custom Wholesale Floors, Design Flooring Distributors | Flooring: Moxon Timbers, Oshkosh Floor Designs | Nailers: Powernail Company, Markwell, Stanley-Bostitch | Abrasive: 3M, SIA (BonaKemi USA) | Finish: BonaKemi USA Sander, Buffer, Edger: Clarke American | Saws: DeWalt, Craftsman, Delta | Router: Ryobi 

Repeated Blessings Designer's Choice (Master Division) | Northwestern Hardwood Floors (Chicago)

Repeated BlessingsNorthwestern Hardwood Floors' Floor of the Year award for Designer's Choice (Master Division) may mark a first for the Floor of the Year competition: The company has now won awards in different years for different floors in the same building. Of course, this is no ordinary job site—it's the magnificent St. John Cantius Church in Chicago. In 1998, an extensive renovation of the church flooring involving multiple inlays and extensive borders swept the Floor of the Year contest, taking home awards for Floor of the Year (Master Division), Members' Choice (Master Division) and Unfinished Craftsmanship and Design. Those awards were shared by Legendary Hardwood Floors and Steamway Inc., which is now Northwestern Hardwood Floors.

The renovation of the church is a continual project led tirelessly by Father Frank Phillips. Most recently, the altar became an increasing concern—the massive structure,imported from Krakow in the late 1800s, was sinking intoits supporting platform. Highly esteemed in church circles, general contractor Deprato Regali was called in to rebuild the altar area. With the success of the wood floors that already had been installed in the church, it was not a question that the rebuilt area also would have wood floors. For those, Northwestern Hardwood's Juan Farfan was the clear choice, as he had worked on the church before and had completed many other church projects for the Chicago Archdiocese.

Select-grade red oak flooring was used as a warm background for the altar, coordinating with the floors completed during the previous renovation. An invisible point approximately 30 feet behind the altar was used to calculate the taper for the 6-inch wide, 10-foot long red oak planks that radiate down the steps from the central altar. Brazilian cherry was bent to form the no sings, which required extra care, as the steps have irregular dimensions. Wenge was used for the risers. A simple inlay of wenge, lacewood, Brazilian cherry and amarillo marks the spot where priests serve communion.

The renovations are funded solely by the dedicated parishioners of St. John Cantius, which draws members from as far away as Iowa and Michigan to attend its traditional masses in Polish. Despite all the foot traffic, the original wood floors are holding up beautifully, as Farfan recoats them once a year, making sure the floors are as magnificent as the rest of this breathtaking place of worship.  —K.M.W.

Suppliers listed in boldface are advertisers in this issue.

Flooring Design: Juan Farfan, Mark Scheller | Distributor: Erickson's Decorating | Flooring: Maxwell Hardwood Flooring, Koetter Woodworking, Birger Juell Ltd., James Q. Boone Builders, Finelines Mfg. | Finish: Basic Coatings | Filler: Woodwise/Design Hardwood Products | Adhesive: Bostik Findley | Abrasives: Norton Abrasives, Festool | Sanding Equipment: KT Sanders, Ceno, Festool, Fein

Spiral to the Stars Designer's Choice (Expert Division) | Naylor's Wood Floors LLC (Brenham, Texas)

Spiral to the StarsStaircases ranging from plain and straight to grand and sweeping are part of most wood flooring installers' repertoires. But,when DeWayne Naylor, owner of Brenham, Texas-based Naylor's Wood Floors, took on a job at the home of a lawyer with a penchant for stargazing, his experience entered a more heavenly dimension with the installation of 42 stunning mesquite treads on a spiral stairway to the stars.

The floating spiral staircase — located in a telescope tower attached to the residence — is continuous from the top of the tower down to the basement and incorporates three landings that provide access to each of the home's levels. Each of the treads on this impressive staircase, designed by Living Architecture & Construction, was hand-cut by Naylor's James Mantey and José Torres. The installation crew worked from the basement up. The first17 steps were built on-site, glued and nailed down over plywood steps, and sanded and finished in place — a task involving many precise angles that had to be fit tight to the rounded wall. The other 25 stairs to the top were pre-cut and sanded and finished before installation, scribed against the wall, cut to length and screwed to a metal plate. The plate cantilevers out and attaches to the rail of the staircase, suspending the portion of the staircase from the top floor to the main level out from the wall, Naylor says.

The team installed a total of 2,000 square feet of random-width, 1/2-inch thick mesquite on the spiral staircase and other areas of the home. At the bottom of the stairs, the mesquite was inlaid with a star medallion featuring black walnut and maple, species chosen for their ability to stand out and to create a three-dimensional look.

The star inlay gives those venturing down to the basement a glimpse of what is housed there—a home theater used to showcase the images of the heavens captured by the telescope above.

Although spiral staircases are a rarity in Texan architecture, the mesquite lends it an inviting familiarity. "The character of the mesquite sets off the whole theme of the house. I think it gave it more of a native Texas feel," Naylor says, adding that the mesquite flooring ties in well with the doors and cabinetry. Although the installation was straightforward, it still was a memorable job, Naylor says. "We have done lots of other floors that were more challenging. This staircase's architectural design was the winning factor. It is definitely a striking piece." —N.S.

Suppliers listed in boldface are advertisers in this issue.

Distributors: Mesquite Hardwoods,Trinity Hardwood | Finish: BonaKemi USA | Filler: Imperial Paints | Nailer: Duo Fast, Powernail Company | Adhesive: Bostik Findley | Abrasive: Virginia Abrasives | Sander: ProSand (BonaKemi USA) | Buffer, Edger: Clarke American | Saws: DeWalt

Some Assembly Required Best Showroom Design | Authentic Wood Floors (Zeeland, Mich.)

Ne Wpuzzlefloor Jj2004

When you think of a father and son completing a puzzle together, you might envision them with heads bent over tiny pieces scattered across the kitchen table. But,if you are the father and son team of Don and Steve Klaasen of Zeeland, Mich.-based Authentic Wood Floors, scenarios like that pale in comparison to the giant wooden puzzle floor that captured them the Floor of the Year award for Best Showroom Design.

The second-story room, which is used by both a builder client and Authentic Wood Floors to showcase products, features a larger-than-life, 120-plus-species, 144-piece puzzle floor designed by Don Klaasen. The idea came in part from a manufacturer's display that the Klaasens saw at a trade show, as well as from a design pow-wow with the builder. Don Klaasen used a CAD system to determine how many pieces he would need for the floor,how big the pieces should be and how all the rows should line up. With the plans finalized, the work of cutting out and putting together the puzzle began.

First, rough stock was planed and edge-glued to form blanks. Once most of the blanks were made, the Klaasens began making the puzzle pieces by drawing the shape of a piece onto a blank, cutting it with a saber saw and sanding it with a spindle sander. Once a piece was done, the next piece had to be made to fit, so it was set on top of the other piece and the shape was traced onto it. "For most pieces, you could do two sides however you wanted, but the other two sides had to be fit to an existing piece," Klaasen says. "All of the pieces are interlocking, and no two pieces are alike. It's like a real puzzle, but without the picture to follow."

To put the puzzle together, the Klaasens laid out the floor,stacked it up in order, row by row, then glued down each piece. The floor features two inlays—the company logo and a world atlas. The atlas pieces were cut with a scroll saw, and each country is a different species of wood. Where it was possible, the Klaasens coordinated wood species with their countries of origin. The ocean, which is made of ash edge-glued together, was dyed blue.

The biggest complication on the job was that the pieces tended to warp. "The challenge was to get all of the pieces to be held down tight while we were gluing them," Klaasen says. "We had a lot of boards wedged from the floor to the ceiling to hold the floor down… The place looked like a forest—you could hardly walk through it." The sanding and finishing also was challenging because of the variety of hardness in the species used. To avoid dish out, the Klaasens tried to group the harder species together.

The prizewinning jigsaw puzzle floor was intense work, but it is successful in two ways—it displays Authentic's species and grades, and it showcases thecompany's design skills and quality. "Most people will still choose a straight floor, but they can still see our design work and our level of craftsmanship. Our customers know that if we can do this type of floor, we can really do a good job on a straight floor,and we think that is a big asset,"Klaasen says. —N.S.

Suppliers listed in boldface are advertisers in this issue.

Distributor: Three Trees Hardwood Distributors | Flooring: Rare Earth Hardwoods, Sandy Pond Hardwoods Inc., Mullican Flooring, Boral Timber, D&M Bamboo Flooring Co. | Finish: Dura Seal | Filler: Glitsa American, Timbermate USA | Nailer: Stanley-Bostitch | Adhesive: Bostik Findley | Abrasive: SIA (BonaKemi USA) | Sander, Edger: Örebro (BonaKemi USA) | Buffer: Kunzle & Tasin | Saws: DeWalt, Delta

A Winning Direction Best Use of Wood Technology | Universal Wood Products (Greely, Ontario)

A Winning DirectionDeveloped by the Greeks and used widely throughout the late middle ages, the Armillary Sphere is a celestial three dimensional compass that was used to chart the planetary universe. Universal Wood Floors has charted its way to success by recreating this complex astrological model in a wood medallion for an Ottawa, Ontario, home.

Universal Wood Floors' president, Chris Vogler, worked with the homeowners to create the concept of the medallion. They wanted a design that would give the floor a distinct flair and represent their affinity for world travel. When Vogler showed them initial designs of the sphere, which is a modified, more-detailed version of a pre-existing design the company produces, they immediately fell in love with the idea.

Once the design was finalized, the painstaking process of manufacturing the intricate medallion began. The complex interwoven rings and in dices of the sphere led to a design process that lasted almost two weeks. "There was a lot of planning just to create the design," Vogler says. With more than 1,200 individual pieces in the 42-inch medallion, everything had to be mathematically perfect to ensure all of the pieces aligned.

After precision laser cutting, the next challenge was assembling all of the complex pieces, some as small as 0.008 inches square. Because each piece was a different shape, everything had to be numbered in sequence. "If you didn't number the parts, you could have spent a month trying to figure out where they went," Vogler says. The cuts also had to be made in the right direction of the grain. Each piece was cut in a way so that the rings appear to be three-dimensional, all flowing in the same direction around the sphere.

Also critical to the final design was the selection of wood species. The medallion consists of more than 15 domestic and tropical species with a main field of flame red birch. "We selected species that would give it a three-dimensional look of shadow and highlight,and keep things from blending into each other," Vogler says.

After the medallion was completed at Universal Wood Floors,Nino Marte Hardwood Floors in Gloucester, Ontario, installed the medallion and the surrounding select-and-better red oak floors,which were stained a toned-down rosewood shade. "The hardest part of the finishing process was to pick a suitable stain color for the surrounding floor that would complement the medallion but not overpower the rich colors in all of the species used to make such a beautiful piece," Marte says.

The end result not only won the enthusiastic approval from the homeowner, but accolades from the voting NWFA members. "It's one of the most intricate things we've done, and we're just thrilled that everyone else thought it was outstanding as well," Vogler says. —C.L.

Suppliers listed in boldface are advertisers in this issue.

Flooring: Universal Wood Products, Renyco | Finish, Filler: BonaKemi USA | Adhesive: Bostik Findley | Abrasive: SIA (BonaKemi USA) | Sander: Galaxy Floor Sanding Machines | Buffer, Edger: Clarke American

Hall of Fame Best Limited Species | Apex Wood Floors (Downers Grove, Ill.)

Hall of FamePart of Apex Wood Floors' mission is to have the company's customers not just satisfied, but ecstatic with their wood floors. With this intricate hallway, Apex completed that mission and then some—not only was the homeowner thrilled with the floor, it also earned Apex its first Floor of the Year award.

The concept for this floor came about through the need to match existing red oak flooring downstairs and to differentiate the long 50-foot hallway from the other rooms upstairs. "They wanted to break up the flow of the rooms and give the hallway its own independence," says John Lessick, owner of Apex Wood Floors. Lessick suggested a herringbone pattern throughout the 350square foot upstairs hallway to give it a multidimensional look. "We didn't want it to feel like a bowling alley," Lessick says. He also introduced the idea of adding two rows of Peruvian walnut diamonds to add flavor to the long expanse of herringbone. The creative homeowner, whose flair for design was apparent by the elaborate murals that adorn all of the walls in the upstairs rooms,loved the idea. "The customer was phenomenal to work with. To introduce a new design aesthetic and have her just really embracing it, that was really cool," Lessick says.

All of the 3-inch-square Peruvian walnut was milled in the shop before being installed on-site. Maintaining a laser-straight line for the 3-by-12-inch red oak herringbone turned out to be a challenge. The long, narrow hallway meant everything had to be dead on. Atone point, the installers noticed the lines weren't lining up perfectly straight, so they had to tear out a portion of the floor and start over. "The hardest thing was just keeping it straight," Lessick explains. "There are only two-and-a-half V's, so it had to be dead on." To ensure a tight fit, the floor was both nailed and glued down.

When the project was completed, Lessick and the Apex crew knew they had a special floor. In addition to entering it in the Floor of the Year contest, they have used the floor in some of their advertising. Best of all, the homeowner couldn't be happier. "We're all about having the customer totally in love with thefloor, and she really loved it,"says Lessick. "For us, that's the most rewarding thing." The award not only pleased the customer, but the crew at Apex, as well. "Getting that award really fires the guys up and makes them want to do even more intricate stuff," Lessick says. "They say,'It's the first of many to come.'"Look to see more of Apex in the future. —C.L.

Suppliers listed in boldface are advertisers in this issue.

Distributors: Chicago Hardwood Specialties, Heidler Hardwood | Flooring: Indiana Hardwoods | Finish: Basic Coatings | Nailer: Powernail Company | Adhesive: Capitol USA | Abrasive: Norton Abrasives | Sander: Hummel (Palo Duro) | Buffer, Edger: Clarke American | Saws: Makita, Bosch, DeWalt

Casino Nights Best Commercial Application | Western Tile & Marble Contractors Inc. (Las Vegas)

Casino NightsThe glitz and glimmer of casino nights can be all-consuming,especially if you are Western Tile & Marble Contractors Inc. A high-end client list made up mostly of high-end gaming facilities means this company's Las Vegas-based hardwood flooring division works into the wee hours to keep its clients' facilities up and running in the city that never sleeps. Although installing50,000 square feet of stripe-patterned exotic flooring at The Palms Resort & Casino was a complex maze of coordination and time management, the company's crews were up to the challenge.

The planning process for this project started about a year-and-a half ago, says Mark Sessions, Nevada operations manager for Western Tile. "It took that long to work through what we were going to do to satisfy them species-wise and how we were going to make it so they didn't notice a disruption to their operations,"Sessions explains. The design was a take-off on the existing floor,with enhancements to the overall stripe pattern and changes to some of the configurations. The stripes, which are made of charpilla, wenge and costello, run vertical with the grain of the wood and intersect with solid wenge and charpilla cut in radius patterns. Species were chosen for both hardness and color.

A bad experience with the building's existing wood floors made the owners reluctant to replace them with more wood. "The wood they purchased originally was not suitable for what they wanted to do. It was all custom stained, and as time went on, the finish and the stain walked off," Sessions says. "That floor didn't even last two years, so it was a challenge to convince them that wood flooring was right for the application." To help prove that both the wood and the finish would stand up to extreme traffic, Sessions and his team did a mock-up on a dance floor in one of The Palms' smaller lounges. When that stood up to the test, they got the go-ahead.

The panel system of the flooring, which was pre-manufactured by Parquet by Dian to fit the stripe width, made installation of the flooring go quickly. The installation, sanding and finishing portion of the project took six months, working mostly late at night and early in the morning. "We averaged about 1,500 to 2,000 square feet of flooring a week," Sessions says.

The biggest challenge was contending with foot traffic in an open casino. "Casinos are so busy that it's always a challenge to get enough area to be productive," Sessions says. Curtains, barricades and people standing guard were not enough to keep people off the floor. "We had a husband and wife traipse right through the food court while we were trying to put the final finish coat on 6,000square feet of flooring," he says. "Dealing with Super Bowl weekend was a big mess, as well as the Final Four Tournament ... And,in the middle of all this, Britney Spears decided to get married, so she was there," Sessions adds.

For the owners of The Palms and for Western Tile's hardwood division, the gamble they took on using wood flooring in such a high-traffic environment has paid off, not only in a gorgeous floor, but now a Floor of the Year trophy, as well. Viva Las Vegas! —N.S.

Suppliers listed in boldface are advertisers in this issue.

Distributor: Parquet by Dian | Finish: Trustor Coatings Wearmax Advanced Ceramic | Filler: Woodwise/Design Hardwood Products | Nailer: Stanley-Bostitch | Adhesive: Chemrex | Abrasive: 3M | Sander: Hummel (Palo Duro), GalaxyFloor Sanding Machines | Buffer, Edger: Clarke American | Saws: Festool

Spreading the Word Best Manufacturer-Finished | Alberta Hardwood Floors (Edmonton, Alberta)

Spreading the WordPhil Smith, president of Alberta Hardwood Floors in Edmonton, Alberta, is savvy about marketing. "We promote ourselves quite well in the city, with lots of radio, TV and print advertising," he says. In addition, the company exhibits at the local spring home and garden show and the fall home show, where Alberta Hardwood displays 400 square feet of Mirage flooring. In addition, Phil's wife, Brenda, secures professional photography for any jobs she thinks are worthwhile, providing the company with plenty of images for its advertising efforts.

As a result, when the homeowners of this winning project walked in the door to the Alberta Hardwood showroom, "They knew they wanted a wood floor, and they knew they wanted Mirage. And, they knew they wanted to deal with Alberta Hardwood," Smith recalls. With that start, all that was left was to pick the colors and the design.

The result was this winning floor, which includes prefinished, engineered 3/8-inch-thick santos mahogany installed on a 45-degree angle. Throughout the entire house, maple was chosen as a contrasting border. It also was used to form a herringbone pattern underneath the dining room table, echoing the design on the tabletop. In all, the installation of the 1,500 square feet of wood flooring took about two weeks. "The customers were ecstatic; we've done a lot of work in that area since," Smith says.

Impressed with how well the photos of the floor turned out, the Smiths decided it was a potential Floor of the Year winner. They have some experience in that regard, having won the Prefinished category of the contest back in 1996 and also in 2000. The awards are evidence of the Smiths' efforts to promote upgrades with factory-finished floors. "In our office, we try to put down different types of patterns," Smith says. His office features jatoba with a maple border and maple inlay; Brenda's office includes oak flooring with a different colored oak border; and the accountant's office features a birch floor with a border. Additionally, the showroom has samples of various species, grades and designs. "Not everyone wants a border or inlay, but it shows that it's there. If you don't show it, you can't sell it,"Smith says.

This winning floor was actually "a pretty standard floor," Smith says,adding that there is much more complicated work going on by other contractors in the wood flooring industry, "but they aren't entering it, and that's a sin … They aren't taking the time to promote themselves, and promotion is key," he adds. As evidenced by his latest trophy, that's a concept Smith understands well. —K.M.W.

Suppliers listed in boldface are advertisers in this issue.

Flooring: Boa-Franc/Mirage | Nailers: Primatech

Take a look at past Wood Floor of the Year winners:

In the Spotlight: 2003 Floor of the Year Winners

Best in Show: Floor of the Year Awards 2002

Sweet Victory: 2001 Floor of the Year Winners

That Winning Feeling: 2000 Floor of the Year Winners

Master Craftsmen: 1999 Floor of the Year Winners

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