Dark Stain on Hardwood Floors

We were so excited to redo some hardwoods!

In our last house, we were so thankful to even have wood, but there wasn’t money to refinish them.

Life of Splendor Sunroom

The color was fine, but we both always pictured some gorgeous dark floors like these.

Dark wood floors


They’re so rich to me.

We went with Minwax Dark Walnut.


We are so in love with how they turned out.  Shall we do a little before and after action to see the difference?




Hardwood Floors Dark Walnut Stain

Sorry these pictures are a bit dark.  I only had my iPhone on hand to take them, but was DYING to show you guys.




Dark Walnut Floor stain Hardwood Floors

Here’s an up close shot of the kitchen floors.

Dark Walnut Floor Stain

Yep, nice and rich to me.

I love how it contrasts against the white walls too.

I will say that our floor guy told us not to use this color.  We had always dreamed of dark floors, but he said that it will show scratches more than lighter colors.  We considered doing a different color, but really had our hearts set on this one.

He did suggest a stronger type of finish called Traffic.  It’s water-based instead of oil-based and creates a stronger, more durable finish.  We went with that, so I’ll have to update y’all in a couple months on how it’s holding up.

And on the scratching, after seeing them finished, I’m not really worried about that at all.  There are some places where there are holes or scratches that were already there and the stain filled them in and it sort of looks black.  It looks really cool and aged.  I should’ve taken a picture to show y’all!

I think, though, that we can fill in future scratches with stain to make it look the same.

Do any of you have dark floors?  Do they really scratch that much more and do you have some advice for covering it up?

I’d love to hear!


UPDATE: They do scratch more.  Read my review of life with dark floors here.

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LOVE THIS! The Minwax Dark Walnut stain is my FAVORITE! We actually used it for refinishing our floors too. From our experience, with a hyper nail clad dog, we had a ton of scratches after polying the floors with a water based product. But anywhere it was noticeable we just dabbed a little bit of stain/poly onto the scratch and it hid perfectly. We later learned from our water based poly snafu and switched to oil based and haven’t had a single scratch on the floor since (going about 6 months strong). I absolutely adore your floors! And your kitchen is REALLY starting to come together!

Interesting…our floor guy told us that this water-based one was the hardest stuff they make. Maybe it’s something different? Or maybe not and it’ll scratch a lot…oh well, haha! Jillian suggested a stain touch-up pen…we’ll be buying one of those!!!

LOVE!! Wow, it’s really starting to come together!

We have dark wood floors, too. They were engingeered, but we’ve found they’re very prone to scratching and dings. We’ve decided to “live with it” for now, until we decide to refinish them down the road. They are very new – 2.5 years – but with a 60lb dog, they haven’t stood the test of time!

We did buy Winmax wood markers at Home Depot for surface scractches, and they’re amazing!

LOVE the idea for a stain pen!!! I will have to buy one of those! If your 60 pound dog is making scratches, I do not want to think about the scratches our Great Dane will make…oh well! It’ll add character!

Oooooh, they’re gorgeous. (And the kitchen all painted white! It looks fabulous!) I’ll admit, I haven’t liked dark wood floors recently, but that’s because I always think of them in my grandma’s kitchen with her dark stained cabinets and black granite counter tops. To be sure, it’s gorgeous, but way too dark for me. However! With all the white, it’s a lovely contrast so you don’t get whited out. Love them!

But I should add that originally we wanted to stain our counter tops a dark walnut stain, because I think that would’ve been beautiful with the gray walls and white cabinets and beadboard, but sadly, our flooring color prevented that. So I’m a big fan of walnut.

Thanks, Kristina! I agree with you…I think the combination of the dark with light is a good balance.

Absolutely love the choices you made! It’s right along the same line we chose for our “former” cottage…white cabinets and walls with dark wood floors (we moved to another state since then). We went with Jacobean stain on the pine floors, loved the rich dark shade, and would do it all over again! The scratches and dings can add to the character and beauty of wood floors 🙂

Thanks so much, Karyn! You’re so right and that’s what I’ve been telling myself…dings add character!

So gorgeous!! I have dark hardwoods and I find them very easy to keep clean and have not had any scratching. However I have no pets or kids 🙂 I do have a friend that buys little slip on things that go over her dogs nails to keep from scratching her hardwoods and I would recommend that! 🙂

HEllo and HELP! We are staining TODAY. We have white oak and 2 labs. I want the Minwax Jacobean or perhaps even Walnut but wasn’t sure it was dark enough, but my husband is pushing the natural b/c lower maintenance, don’t see scratches etc.

Really have my heart set on the dark new kitchen with white cabinets, etc

How are your floors doing? Any advice?