As you can (barely) see in the snapshot up top, the wood floors in my kitchen are old and in not-so-good shape. Since it's not in our budget to replace them immediately, I went on a search for some good kitchen mats that would protect the floors and provide a little extra comfort underfoot. And do you know where my research landed me? At the front door:
The mats I decided to purchase are waterhog entry mats. More often found at the entrances of everything from schools to doctors' offices, waterhog mats are utilitarian and tough. They're readily available for residential applications from retailers like L.L. Bean, though color selection is limited. I ended up purchasing mine from American Floor Mats for two reasons that make the mats feel a little softer and more residential than, say, the entrance to an airport:
- Color selection: Through this retailer, I ordered samples of my "short list" of colors. From the samples, I was able to select the bright orange you see here - a color that isn't available everywhere and one that I feel warms the space more than a commercial-looking black, gray, or navy would.
- Fabric Borders: Instead of the standard black rubber border, my rugs have a fabric border that matches the body of the rug. I think this is another detail that tones down their normally-commercial use and makes the a little more at home in the home kitchen.
So far, I'm incredibly happy with the decision to use waterhog mats in the kitchen. They're easy to clean (you can sweep them, vacuum them, or just hose them off outside), they stay put with a strong rubber backing, and they provide just a little padding underfoot (those gel mats personally have always given me the willies and make me feel a little slow on my feet when I'm busy in the kitchen).
Have you ever used (or considered using) waterhog entry mats in the kitchen? What do you think?
Related: Gel Kitchen Mats: Are They Worth It?
(Image: Katie Y.)