What Quality Means at Stuga

A potted orange tree on a Scandinavian oak floor

Photo: Christian Torres Photography | Floor featured: Greta

Stuga started with a simple goal: To provide well-designed floors and unique stair solutions directly to you, with ease. 

The traditional way of buying hardwood floors felt like buying a used car. You had to drive to archaic flooring showrooms, often met with high-pressure salespeople explaining technical details that didn’t matter about a floor that you didn’t like. Buying floors online was not much better, with smoke-and-mirrors around pricing and confusing filters around thousands of floors, none of which quite fit your style. 

That’s why we partnered with Scandinavia’s most forward-thinking hardwood flooring companies to curate a dreamy collection of wood floors and made them directly available to browse, sample and buy online. No smoke-and-mirrors, no technical jargon, just gorgeous, well-made floors shipped to you. 

As an e-commerce company, high quality is inherent in our business model because anything less is a risk. But what do we mean when we say “quality”, and how do we stand behind our floors with such conviction (not to mention a warranty to back it up)? Here’s everything you need to know.

Legacy European Manufacturing

Our founder, Marc Bacher, started Stuga after spending years working for the original inventors of engineered hardwood flooring in Sweden. Stuga launched with a collection of floors from this very manufacturer, all of which still use the same 3-layer construction that was invented in 1941. 

As other companies began to manufacture engineered wood flooring, they added extra layers and harmful chemicals to the cores of their products, claiming that this added stability. Meanwhile, the simple construction of our products remained exactly the same - with non-toxic finishes and glues without added formaldehyde - and continued to perform in European homes for decades on end. 

Here’s what’s important to know about the construction of our floors. Cross-directional layers of pine and spruce make up the core. These porous, soft woods protect the hardwood above from moisture while allowing for natural movement as humidity changes within the home. In addition to performing wonderfully, pine and spruce are fast-growing trees that minimize our impact on slower-growing oak forests.

Modern Stair Solutions

We believe that your staircase should be the centerpiece of your home, and to do it justice, you need access to modern stair solutions. Traditionally, engineered floors were paired with solid wood stair nosings that tended to look clunky and mismatched. So we set out to change that. 

Through extensive R&D with custom home builders and carpenters, we developed stair nosings made from the flooring planks themselves. The antithesis to their clunky solid-wood precursors, these nosings are sleek and minimal by design while perfectly matching your floor. Without the quality construction behind our floors, these stair nosings would not perform. Because we need stair solutions that work, we seek out the best in floor quality; and because we curate quality floors, we’re able to offer stair solutions. Ipso facto.

Air Quality and Off-Gassing

Knowing that we spend 90% of our lives indoors, the air quality of our homes is essential to well-being. It’s especially important in flooring, one of the largest material choices for your home by square footage. You can breathe easy knowing that our floors will be among the lowest-emitting products in your home. 

Dependable, Beautiful Oak

Wood species matters for a couple of reasons. For one thing, it’s generally preferred to use hardwoods for flooring (oak, maple, etc.) over soft woods (pine, fir, spruce, etc.) simply because hardwoods are more resilient when it comes to daily wear-and-tear. Plus, it will last a lifetime. But the reason we love white oak the most? Its visually soft grain patterns. The grain of white oak flows beautifully throughout your home. It’s organic yet modern.

Balanced Finishes

If you’ve sampled enough floors from different companies, you’ve likely come across plastic-feeling, dull finishes. We strongly believe that design should enhance your sensory experience. That’s why we curate our collection to only include floors with minimal finishes that look great and feel wonderfully grounding underfoot. 

Borrowing from the Swedish concept of lagom - not too little, not too much - our finishes are strong enough to protect the wood below but minimal enough to let the wood’s beauty through. Our acrylic finishes are UV cured, forming a nearly instant bond with the wood while remaining very physically hard and visually clear. Our oiled finishes have an incredibly natural feel. We believe a material as primal as wood is good for human wellbeing and deserves to be left as close to its natural state as possible. 

Worker Wellbeing

Many of the workers in the factories where we source our floors are part of families that have been working in the same facility for generations. That’s because worker wellbeing is an integral part of how the factories are run. Workers are paid real, living wages at the factories where we source our floors. But that’s just the bare minimum. Repetitive tasks are automated so that workers can focus on more stimulating work. Regular breaks and overall work-life balance are enthusiastically encouraged. This conscious, human approach to worker wellbeing is reflected in the dependable quality of our floors.

Environmental Thoughtfulness

Our floors start their lives in responsibly-managed forests, and are made to last a lifetime. They can be mended and repaired over time. Beyond that, our manufacturers turn wood waste from the factories into briquettes that provide heat to the factories as well as locals’ homes. In doing so, the main factory in Nybro, Sweden became the first climate-positive wood flooring factory in the world. But we know that Stuga could be doing more. That’s why we’re committed to using our business as a force for good. In 2019, we began donating 1% of our sales to environmental causes. We simply consider it to be the cost of doing business on this planet.