My boo and I are going to be putting in a new floor in our kitchen very soon. We've gone over the options and have kicked around the possibility of cork, wood and tile. Each have their pluses and minuses, which is why we're still vacillating and, frankly, why we haven't started the project. Now, to make things even more confusing, we have thrown in the notion of tile that looks like wood. Yup, the floors highlighted in these images are actually tile.
The first two images are from the Tesoro Collection via South Cypress.
The great thing about these floors is because they're porcelain, they're super easy to work with, unlike natural stone which can be a mother for the DIYer. From my cursory investigation, prices hover around the 4 (for ceramic) to 6 (for porcelain) bucks a square foot neighborhood, which means they're affordable as well.
I think the success of their install has a lot to do with their grout lines. Take for example the one pictured below. That has to be un-sanded grout for such tight grout lines.
For comparison, here's a bathroom floor done with standard sanded grout lines, which looks overtly tile-y and busy, but that's what happens when you use a highly contrasting grout color.
Here's an example of another good install. It's something called Easy Wood from Marca Corona that I spotted on Garden State Tile's Facebook page:
Lest we think these tiles would only look good under our feet, take a look at this (probably ceramic) shower install:
Or this one:
Nice-looking, super durable and easily DIYable? Throw in a heating element and that's a combo hard to dismiss.
POST UPDATE: We spent yesterday perusing the aisles of our two favorite tile shops looking for samples of such tiles. I'm happy to say they're as gorgeous in person as they are in these pictures. Some things to keep in mind if you're going to DIY it, however. First, they're dense and long (one we saw was a whopping 8" x 48"!), so you'll need a tile saw or grinder to do any cutting. Second, you'll want to grout them using a FINE-SANDED GROUT if you want to keep those grout lines minimal.