Plywood Sheeting to Beautiful Wood Flooring

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Well, it happened. After a couple years of drooling over Pinterest DIY plywood flooring, I convinced my man that it could be done. He was very skeptical. I have read lots of blogs on the subject, used Pinterest to highlight and show the results of ones I liked and ones I felt were not correct for our situation. He was still skeptical…….

pin photo


Also he is old school. ‘You don’t just wing it, it needs to be done right’. ‘The floor needs to be tongue and groove, how would you possibly hold it down?’  ‘You can’t just nail it to the floor.’  ‘ You can’t use plywood, you’ll get splinters when you walk.’      ‘It needs to be sealed.’  ‘ Top grade plywood is expensive.’          ‘ That would be a lot of work.’


Well he is right about a lot of things, and especially this last one. It IS a lot of work. But so worth it. We have pride when we walk on the floor WE MADE.

We had a flooring company come to measure our master bedroom and hallway for some rustic hardwood flooring, The cost was $7,950 installed for engineered wood. I was sure we could do better.

I had some sample boards from the store laying around while we selected the perfect one. I still wanted plywood. So I made a sample board of how I thought ours would look.

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Sample Board

We left it on the floor with the others for about a week and when friends came over we asked their unbiased opinion, most liked mine and were blown away when I said I MADE it. You what?

We lived without carpet for several months and when we got our heads wrapped around how this was actually going to happen, we started.

Here are the steps we followed.

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He can’t believe I talked him into this……
  1. Select the wood. We chose 15/32 plywood from Lowes. The cost per sheet was $15.95 per sheet.
Cut into planks

2. Cut the wood, we chose to have plank widths:   6″ 4.75″ and 3.75″ This gave a cohesive randomness to the finished project. It also produced very little waste.

Find your color, and stain planks. Wear a respirator. I put one on right after this photo.

3. Stain the planks, I used a combination of special walnut, natural oak and natural all from Minwax. I used these because that is what I had already that was not too red looking.

4. Let dry (and air out) overnight in the garage.

under-lament for floating floors. We did this for sound and moisture

5. Install under-lament

Place boards in order you want and make sure you have enough stained.

6. We laid the planks and spaced the pattern out before we nailed anything down. Then finished staining the remaining planks (outside)

install using nails in each corner

7. Nail down planks. We made sure the boards were laying flush and did not creep. We used 2 5/8 panel nails (color Dark Oak). One in each corner of each board, then we snapped a line and made several rows to hold the boards securely.

Sealed rustic farmhouse floor

8. Next we sealed it with three coats of Polycrylic also from Minwax.


We had enough savings to justify a new bench…..

The result is fantastic. I am so happy with it.

next is the bedroom……..

9.  Repeat steps 1-8 for the master bedroom.

10. Since we left our existing baseboards on and slipped the new floor under them, there was a small gap. This was fixed by installing base shoe trim along the floor. It finishes it off nicely.