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Paperbag floor

 
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Tobias Ber wrote:use natural building techniques even inside your flat. like: lime-paint, lime-stucco, clay-paint, clay-stucco
use pallet-wood
use natural finishes (linseed-oil ...)
make a paperbag-floor



I need to do something with floors in my living room and kitchen (about 400 sqft total). I looked at people doing these paper bag floors, which is nice, but the finished floor is mainly whatever sealant they use over the paper, such as a polyurethane. Any ideas for something that will last on floors that take heavy traffic from people, dogs, spills etc? Seems all these things have drawbacks. Especially regarding scratches and liquid.
 
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I have heard of taking brown paper bags, rough tearing into postage stamp sized roughly pieces and varnishing to a wall to make a sort of faux leathery looking surface. Using them for flooring sounds most interesting. Any one have any information? And what could you install this surface over?
 
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I haven't done the paper bag floor myself but I'm thinking about it.  Here's a website with good instructions and she put it in a main staircase and her kid's bedroom floors.  Plus she has a dog.  So it must be somewhat resilient.  

Lovely Crafty Home
 
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I have do the paper bag thing on the floor.  It did not hold up to chair sliding,  6 children and two dogs.  

I did it over a subfloor of osb so you may have different results.  If you are looking for some way to kick the can down the road that is reasonably cheap it will work.  It is not a long term floor covering especially for homesteaders.  
 
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Hi,

I have a paper bag floor and is very happy with it😊
It is as strong as the sealant, I used water dilutable lacquer.  And it have withstood heavy abuse of water and sand in the entrance. I will be more worn some places by the abuse, but never torn. And nothing that a new layer of lacquer wouldn't fix. But it's a lot of work just tearing and crumbling the paper!

And I think you could use all kind of things like fabric, newspapers, magazines...
I used leaves and straws, but hadn't planned ahead to squeeze it all flat before use, so they did noth withstand the use... I think there was some kind of wax on the leaves that maid it hard to glue it in place.

Good luck😊

Ove B-)
 
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this sounds fascinating.  I bet I would like the look of it.  As for a possible finish:  flax oil, heated to near smoking point.  I put this on an earthen floor I made in the garage.  It was practice before I put it in an upstairs bedroom.(never did the upstairs thing).

For the garage floor, I bought gallons of flax oil (from soapers choice dot com), and heated it and applied it very hot.  I did not want the "boiled linseed oil" product they sell at the local big box hardware store because it seems to have VOC type thinners in it, no longer is simple boiled linseed oil.

I found instructions somewhere and should have used several coats but only used the one, and it penetrated deeper in some places than others, definitely not the "ideal" the prescribed application.  Even so, the finish was very  durable and hard and resistant to water unless- the water was left pooled on top of it, which would be handy if you wanted to remove it, or repair or change it.

Very important to note it "off gassed" for quite some time, and I've heard others have noticed this.  If I were going to use it in my living space I would plan to do it early in the spring and leave the windows open all summer and late into the fall.
 
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