Natural Wood Characteristics2017-01-11T16:29:19+00:00

Natural Wood Characteristics

Graining & Natural Changes

Hallmark wood floors are created to showcase the natural beauty of wood. As such, the planks will contain natural mineral deposits/streaking, and both closed and filled knots. Wood is a natural product that features distinct color and graining. Each board is unique in its characteristics and will vary from piece to piece. Each board can vary from a clean to rustic visual.

Natural Color Variation

Boards include an array of light and dark portions depending on whether the wood comes from the inner (heartwood) or outer (sapwood) section of the tree.

Note: Samples featured may not be representative of your entire installed floor, for your reference and the latest updated information, please click here to see our online room scenes and project galleries.

Heartwood & Sapwood

It is important to take heartwood and sapwood into consideration before choosing your floors.

Natural Wood Characteristics


The difference between the inner part of the tree (heartwood) and the outer part of the tree (sapwood) can be seen as variations of light and dark. The natural contrast between heartwood and sapwood plays a major role in the color of wood floors. Variations can occur from board to board, as well as in the same board. This occurs naturally, and is not an “unfinished” board.
Staining wood floors can diminish the appearance of heartwood and sapwood, but it doesn’t entirely hide these natural characteristics. The stain helps to blend the natural contrasts together. It doesn’t eliminate it. Fuming has the opposite affect on heartwood and sapwood. Fumed floors are designed on purpose to magnify the natural contrast.

Key Design Characteristics & Elements

These are key characteristics for the following collections, in regards to graining & natural wood variations.

  • Organic Solid/567 Engineered Collections: Fumed aging on oak products, over wood between boards, open & filled knots, splits & checks, ranging from large to small. Sticker marks & tannin-stains, heartwood and sapwood (light to dark) and varied texture due to custom 10 step proprietary process.
  • Alta Vista/Ventura & Novella Collections: Fumed aging on oak products, multiple species with details ranging from large to small filled knots, splits & checks. Tannin-stains, heartwood and sapwood (light to dark).
  • Moderno Collection: Filled small to medium knots, splits & checks.
  • Heirloom/Monterey/Chaparral Collections: Multiple species with details ranging from large to small filled knots, splits & checks. Heartwood & sapwood included.
  • Silverado Collection: Small to medium filled knots & splits.

Hardwood Floors 101 |Natural Wood Characteristics