Revive Restore Refinish White Oak Hardwood Floors at our New Custom Home Construction with Bona, Wood Floor Designs, & Scalese Millworks – A Series – Part 2


Categorized by me as “EASY”:

  •  Exercising
  • Cardio
  • Attending college for 6 years– I faintly remember this as being easy. LOL.
  • Sleeping
  • Dressing my kids in matching and family coordinated outfits
  • Spending money
  • Cooking food
  • Loving my kids
  • Watching Wood Floor Designs install and refinish my hardwood floors at #thelaydenlegacy

Categorized by me as “HARD”:

  • Watching what I eat
  • Weight lifting
  • Deciding what I wanted to do with the rest of my life
  • Going to sleep at a reasonable hour
  • Finding the pieces to the matching outfits and/or making sure my kids clothes are washed, folded and put away (Ugh!)
  • Saving money
  • Meal planning
  • “Parenting” my kids
  • The thought of ripping out a floor and replacing it completely at #thelaydenlegacy (Thankfully– I’ll never have to do that!)


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Frayed Denim Shorts
Sage Wedge Sandal
Rag & Bone Cutoff Denim Shorts
Shein Foldover Front Off Shoulder Frill Trim Striped Dress
Forever 21 High-Rise Button-Fly Shorts
Shein Cold Shoulder Wrap Belted Striped Dress
Frayed Denim Shorts
Sage Wedge Sandal
Rag & Bone Cutoff Denim Shorts
Shein Foldover Front Off Shoulder Frill Trim Striped Dress
Forever 21 High-Rise Button-Fly Shorts
Shein Cold Shoulder Wrap Belted Striped Dress
Frayed Denim Shorts
Sage Wedge Sandal
Rag & Bone Cutoff Denim Shorts
Shein Foldover Front Off Shoulder Frill Trim Striped Dress
Forever 21 High-Rise Button-Fly Shorts


Wow!  If there was one thing that was easier than I ever expected it be, it was the installation and refinishing process of my hardwood floors at our new home construction.  I can honestly say not only was it seamless, but actually PAINLESS!  After I made the decision of installing 6 inch, select cut, white oak flooring with the help Paul at Scalese Millworks (see my post- Everything You EVER (or Never) Needed to Know About Hardwood), my project was turned over to Bona and  Wood Floor Designs (a Bona Certified Craftsman).   Let me tell you- upon meeting Rudy and his team at Wood Floor Designs, I knew the process was going to be much easier than I ever anticipated.  Now, granted this project was sponsored, but if you’ve been following my journey so far, you know that I’m not going to tell you that something in custom home building is easy when it’s not. LOL.   I am so thankful I was able to turn the project over the the professionals.  Perhaps most importantly, this meant I only had two additional decisions to make in the rest of the project (1.Wood Stain  2.Wood Finish– which I’ll be discussing in detail in my next blog post).

Ultimately, what did this mean for me?  LESS STRESS, not only now– but in the long run.  I know I made the right decision with my hardwood selection, and (for this reason) I will never have to rip out and replace my flooring.  (In case Scott is reading this…Honey, that means LESS money spent in the long run.  I know… that’s a first!)

Why Bona?  Why hire a Bona Certified Craftsman?

It’s really simple friends.  They are the best in the business.  They produce the best products to revive, restore, and refinish hardwood floors.  In a nutshell, they “know what they are doing.”  They attend numerous trainings and conferences throughout the year to stay up to date.  Most importantly, they don’t take shortcuts.  This means less problems in the long run.  And the best part of hiring one is that it is actually easy for the customer because they do ALL the work.  Sounds like a win-win, right?  As with anything regarding a new home construction project, I encourage you to do your own research prior to your project.  If you do your own research, you will find that you can’t go wrong with hiring a BCC for your project needs.  Keep this in mind– BCC’s are in extremely high demand.  What does this mean?   You will have to have patience.  It also means that  if you are building, renovating, or looking for a hardwood install or refinish, plan accordingly.  Because BCC’s are so good at what they do, they are usually booked out several months in advance.


Step 1:  Wood is delivered to the new home to acclimate to the environment.

To be honest, I never knew wood needs to acclimate to the environment where it’s being installed.  After getting our geothermal system fully operational, the air-conditioning enabled the house to reach our desired living temperature (okay – my desired living temperature…lol) and a reduced humidity level.  Did you know increased levels of humidity can cause the floor boards to swell?  Once we achieved an acceptable temperature and humidity level, we brought in the wood to let it sit for a few weeks prior to installation.  I told my son Ian- this is the ONLY time he is allowed to dribble a basketball in the new house!)

Step 2:  Subfloor is sanded.

There were some high spots on the floor, and for a perfect installation, the subfloor had to be sanded. This is when I realized how fortunate I was to have Wood Floor Designs performing the installation.  They don’t take shortcuts.  They do the job correctly, which means MORE TIME upfront but LESS PROBLEMS in the long run.  After they were done sanding the subfloor it looked so clean and crisp even I would have honored the “5 second rule”.   Okay…maybe I wouldn’t go that far, but even that it crossed my mind, you should get the point that it was a job well done!

Step 3:  Moisture Barrier is applied.

Old Jessica only cared about moisture masks.  New Jessica cares about moisture barrier.   Why? During times of increased humidity, the moisture barrier prevents the potential havoc that could result on solid wood floors.  Thanks to Wood Design Designs and Bona R540, my hardwood is protected from added moisture.   As I mentioned earlier, I never knew this was important.  Sometimes I feel like the more I know leads to more stress in my life…Lol.  In this case however, I was happy to learn about moisture protection the easy way (in advance from experts) versus the hard way (having to replace my floors in the future).


Step 4:  Hardwood is installed using Glue Assist.

Rudy and his team precisely installed the wood, mixing it by bundle and length.  This took longer to do, but in the end, gave a more beautiful result.  According to, “Bona R850T is a one component, moisture curing, water and solvent free, saline-based adhesive for wood floors. Provides outstanding adhesion to a variety of surfaces and allows for the natural movement of wood flooring”.   Some of the key benefits include easy application, easy to clean, and zero VOCs.   Bona R850T is also a great “alternative to face nailing close-out rows, board replacements, and trim applications” (   The product is applied using Bona’s own technology, and it was amazing to watch how competent and confident the Bona Certified Craftsmen of Wood Floor Designs performed the glue assist.  I must admit, when I hear the word “assist” I can’t help but think of basketball and Bona being the official hardwood floor care partner for the Boston Celtics.   With that said, my son is definitely prohibited from practicing his dribbling skills in the great room after this project is completed!


Step 5:  Hardwood is sanded with Bona Dust Containment System.

Wow.  All I can say was that I’m still amazed that there was no dust present during the sanding process.  This means the entire environment stayed cleaner and it was so easy to clean up.  I was amazed.  Maybe more so by the fact that my husband’s allergies didn’t even “act up” during the entire process.  This was a win-win for me because I really hate dealing with his “man colds”.

Step 6:  Stain is selected and applied.

I will be dedicating an entire post in the future as to how I selected a stain.  As I mentioned earlier, this was the “only” difficult decision I had to make regarding the installation/refinish process.  Luckily, because I chose white oak, regardless of what stain or finish I ultimately choose, now that I’ve gone through the process once, I know in future if I ever do change my mind, my floors can easily be refinished with a BCC.  Now that is peace of mind.  If I tell Scott I no longer like the color of stain I picked next week, I may have a slight problem on my hands.

Step 7:  Finish is rolled on.

From the moment I started working with Paul at Scalese Millworks he raved about a product by Bona called Traffic HD.  He actually said he refuses to use anything else as a finish product because it’s superior and nothing else compares to it on the market.  Keep this in mind if you have pets, or kids, or husbands who refuse to take their shoes off when entering the home!  The Bona Traffic HD Waterborne finishes takes the “amber” and ugly orange tones out of wood.  This finish keeps the wood looking most like it’s natural state.  It has a low VOC, low odor, and is a very durable finish that keeps the home site safe and free of toxins.  If you’ve been following me for a while you know that health and wellness has been and always will be a top priority to me.  For these aforementioned reasons, I am so thankful this product exists.

Step 8:  Enjoy my hardwood floors FOREVER!

In case you missed my post about hardwood lasting forever, it can be read here.  Having access to Bona’s full suite fo products to install, renovate, finish, transform, and ultimately care for my hardwood floors was a dream come true for me.  I am so happy to have worked with Bona and Wood Floor Designs to create such a beautiful end result.  I have full confidence that if you have stumbled upon this post looking to renovate or install your own hardwood floors, finding a BCC would be the best place to start. You can go to this page to find a Bona Certified Craftsman near you that can help you obtain the floors of your dreams.



I’m indebted to Bona, Wood Floor Designs, & Scalese Millworks for helping me achieve amazing hardwood floors.  This post is sponsored by Bona, but as always–all opinions are my own.

Many thanks to Planful Marketing and Amanda Wilson Photography for providing several of the images above.








  1. Jill
    September 12, 2020 / 12:18 pm

    Have your floors yellowed at all? We did Bona Nordic Seal, with Traffic HD Matte. I hate how they have turned out. They totally turned yellow, and the matte finish shows every footprints. Awful! The flooring company is finally going to refinish our floors, and I don’t want the yellowing to happen again. They said it was from natural light. They turned yellow within 2 months, but maybe that is the issue. Can’t imagine that was natural light. Anyway, I’m just stumped on what to do.

    • Jessicalayden
      September 24, 2020 / 7:30 pm

      Hi Jill,
      No, our floors have not yellowed at all. I have TONS of natural light so I hope this doesn’t become an issue for us in the future. I believe I went with the satin finish however not the matte. We did not use the Nordic seal. I did try it and did not like the tone it pulled on our particular floors. I know every Bona stain can look different depending on the wood grade. What kind of hardwood did you choose? Was it White Oak? Feel free to reach out with more questions. I am on instagram more often @jessicalayden
      Good luck and I hope you find some answers. Nothing more painful than having to go through that experience again!

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