A wood medallion inlay, from a company like A B Cushing Mills Ltd, in the center of a hardwood floor adds a sophisticated focal point to almost any room. When selecting medallions, look to other hardwood elements in the room to come up with an attractive but contrasting color to the floor. For example, using the same stain colors for the medallion that you see in a nearby stair banister or the room's trim can help pull all the different wood elements together.
Step 1: Prepare your medallion.
Just like your hardwood floors, the wood of the medallion may swell or contract depending on the humidity and temperature in the room. Unpack the medallion and lay it in the room where you will be installing it for 24 hours so it can adjust to the conditions in your home. This results in a more accurate measurement during installation.
Step 2: Trace the shape.
Lay the medallion face down on a large sheet of paper, and then trace around it to create an accurate template. Lay the template on top of the floor in the area where you want the medallion and tape it down with painter's tape.
Step 3: Remove the flooring.
Cut around the template with a router or jigsaw. Penetrate the floor boards by 3/16 of an inch on each pass until you reach the subfloor beneath. Lift the old boards out of the way and make sure the medallion fits snugly in the hole.
Step 4: Clean the hole.
Smooth the edges of the floor boards with sandpaper and vacuum up any sawdust. If the subfloor beneath seems dusty or dirty, wipe it with a wet cloth and allow it to dry. You don't want any grit or dust to interfere with the adhesive.
Step 5: Glue it tight.
A standard flooring adhesive made for wood floors will keep the medallion in place. Coat the subfloor with the adhesive and fit the medallion into place, making sure it is orientated as desired. Lay a towel over the top of the medallion and stack weights, such as bricks or sand bags, on top so it remains flat. Most adhesives take 24 hours to dry completely.
Step 6: Finish the Job.
After everything is in place and dry, inspect the perimeter of the medallion for any gaps. If there are large gaps, fill them with wood putty, let it dry, and sand it down.
Your new medallion will require the same care as the rest of your hardwood floor. You can use the same cleaners and polish it just as you do the rest of the flooring so it looks its best.