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Paper Bag Floor

When we bought our home, there were way more home improvement projects than we had money in the budget for. So, we lived with things until, little by little we could fix them. I hated our dining room. Gross carpet. Searching the internet one day I came across a post about paper bag floors. Thinking it couldn't be any worse than what we had, we went for it. It turned out amazing. Over 2 years later it still looks great.
Looking at the photo, you would never know it was just paper, glue and stain. It has a rich leather look and is super durable.
We used two rolls of plain brown wrapping paper, and elmer's glue. Our biggest expense was the poly since we wanted to make sure that it stayed durable.
After prepping our floor, we tore brown paper into chunks, wadded it up to break the paper fibers and the soaked it in our glue mixture. A little messy, but so worth it in the end.
Then came the creative part. We squeezed out the excess glue and smoothed the paper onto the prepared floor like a big patchwork quilt. The wrinkles in the paper and the slight finish difference between the sides of paper added to the interest.
We let the floor dry for a few days and then used old rags to add a rich stain and bring out more of the detail. Several coats of poly to seal it and we have an inexpensive floor solution that looks like a million bucks and holds up to our family!

To see more: http://www.fortheloveoflillian.com/2012/03/paper-bag-floor.html

  • Hannah V
    Hannah V Brooklyn, NY
    on Aug 15, 2014

    Such a cool project! I had no idea this could be done!

  • Jeanette S
    Jeanette S Atlanta, GA
    on Aug 16, 2014

    Great job!!! I have seen this several times and each time I like it more and more. But this is the first time I have seen staining it...I like this results. Add a nice not so expensive rug and you have an elegant dining room!

    • Jill Morse
      Jill Morse North Ridgeville, OH
      on Aug 16, 2014

      @Jeanette S Love the idea of a rug. I also think it will give it an elegant feel!

  • Christine Jess Danbrook
    Christine Jess Danbrook
    on Aug 16, 2014

    I am about to try this on a dresser...wish me luck.

    • Wren Smart
      Wren Smart Mapleton, OR
      on Aug 17, 2014

      @Christine Jess Danbrook I finished the floor with a satin finish. The gloss was just too much. The satin makes it even more leather looking. Good luck with your dresser!

  • Gail Whaley
    Gail Whaley Cape Coral, FL
    on Aug 16, 2014

    Wow, this gives the appearance of a more expensive cork floor, great job! I have seen this on walls and it is beautiful. Mom always said if you have more time than money you can work miracles.

    • Sandra McKown
      Sandra McKown
      on Jan 4, 2018

      thank you for the idea!! I've painted cork in paintings, and I got it to look very realistic.. having a cork floor is out of my budget, but I certainly have the supplies and am willing to try to get a corky look !

  • LJ
    LJ Mascoutah, IL
    on Aug 16, 2014

    Would you recommend this for a kitchen floor? Wondering if the sections that are walked on the most will wear. Any advice

    • Wren Smart
      Wren Smart Mapleton, OR
      on Aug 16, 2014

      As long as you put several coats of poly on, you should be just fine. The great part about this floor is that you can easily repair any worn spots. Just cut out the bad area, glue and paper like you did before and seal. Our floor gets quite a bit of traffic and still looks great after over 2 years. I just use a damp mop and now and then give it a good wax with something like future floor wax.

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