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A Project Close to Home – The Blue Pine Swirl

The “Blue Pine Swirl” project was born from a personal challenge within my own home. This journey began not from a client’s request but from my family’s desire for a unique hardwood floor. Utilizing the natural curvature of a pistol butt tree from our property, the project symbolized a fusion of personal life with professional artistry, embarking on a venture where homegrown wood transformed into a masterpiece.

The Blue Pine Swirl custom wood floor project in Tom Ourada's home

Transforming My Home with the Blue Pine Swirl

The ‘Blue Pine Swirl’ project began with a personal challenge. After years of creating hardwood floors for others, the time came to transform my own home. This journey started with my wife’s simple question about our floors, sparking a creative quest to use resources from our own property.

The consultation phase was unique for ‘Blue Pine Swirl.’ The inspiration came from a pistol butt tree on our land, curving like a giant C. This tree’s shape presented an exciting challenge for milling and was integral to the floor’s design, embodying the essence of our surroundings.

A pine cone rests on a custom hardwood floor.

The Blue Pine Swirl Design

Designing ‘Blue Pine Swirl’ was a family affair. I presented three designs, each inspired by the natural form of the wood. The unanimous choice was a spiral shape, harmonizing with the organic curves of the blue pine. This phase was about capturing the spirit of the wood in a tangible form.

A drawing of the Blue Pine Swirl custom hardwood floor project.

Making the Design a Reality

Fabrication of ‘Blue Pine Swirl’ was a hands-on process. Milling the curved tree was a formidable task, requiring adjustments to accommodate its unique shape. Each slab cut brought us closer to realizing the vision, symbolizing the transformation of raw nature into artistic expression.

Installation of ‘Blue Pine Swirl’ was a blend of excitement and learning. The wet logs posed a challenge, leading to innovative drying techniques in my home. This phase was a testament to the adaptability and the importance of understanding wood’s natural properties for a successful installation.

Installing the Blue Pine Swirl custom hardwood floor.

A First for My Custom Hardwood Floors

The completion of ‘Blue Pine Swirl’ marked a milestone in my journey as a hardwood floor artist. This project, born from the wood of my own land, won accolades and recognition, affirming my approach to floor design. It wasn’t just a floor; it was a personal statement, a testament to creativity and connection to nature.

Tom Ourada stands on the Blue Pine Swirl custom hardwood art floor.

Don’t Take My Word for It

At the 2014 NWFA Wood Flooring Expo in Nashville, Tennessee,  President and CEO of NWFA, Michael Martin, proudly announced the winners of the 2014 Wood Floor of the Year during the gala Awards Dinner on April 18th. The prestigious Members’ Choice award was given to Ouarada Designs for this exceptional residential wood floor.

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