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care guide

Timber

Timber care

Provenance of materials is very important to Timothy Oulton, and pure, natural materials are sought out from whichever corner of the earth offers the best quality. Much of our wood is salvaged from former barns and distilleries in the UK, old parquet flooring, and decommissioned fishing junks. All the wood is de-nailed by hand and treated in the Timothy Oulton workshop. Our master craftsmen take great pride in hand-carving and hand-finishing the timber using traditional artisanal methods.

Reclaimed wood is rife with character, and often has small cracks and signs of weathering or evidence of its former life. At Timothy Oulton, we believe in celebrating and preserving all those ‘imperfections’ in the wood, respecting the passage of time and the idea that time actually makes things more beautiful. Reclaimed wood looks better as it ages and with continued use. Each piece is unique, and each tells a different story.

Preventative measures should be taken to avoid stains, scratches and water marks on your wood furniture. Some residual marks will appear over time with use, this adds to the patina of the piece and makes it more storied, more unique and more beautiful.

Wood finishes

GERT (Genuine English Reclaimed Timber)

Genuine English reclaimed timber, salvaged from old buildings in the UK including mills and distilleries, up to 100 years old. The wood is all de-nailed by hand and treated in the Timothy Oulton workshop. As the wood is salvaged, colour may vary from piece to piece. The wood is occasionally treated with a light stain to even out any colour variations caused by weathering, in this case it is normal for some colour to be transferred to the cloth when cleaning, this will lesson over time. Slight cracks are normal and should be expected.

(Featured on: English Beam, Georgian Architectural, Causeway)

Genuine Reclaimed Vintage Boat Wood

Reclaimed from decommissioned Chinese fishing junks. After decades of exposure to the high seas and elements, the reclaimed boat wood from the hulls, decking, and beams of the boats reflects uniquely weathered colorations, cracks, oil marks and textures. There may be areas of the wood where the original patina has been repaired. Each piece tells a story, forming a solid, cohesive collection rife with character and personality.

Natural cracking may occur over time and is not a sign of defect. The wood is sometimes treated with a stain to even out any colour variations caused by weathering. In this case, it is normal for some colour to be transferred to the cloth when cleaning, this will lesson over time. Each product is finished individually, therefore colour and margins may vary from piece to piece. 

(Featured on Axel MK3 collection)

Dark Parquet

Our Dark Parquet finish is fashioned from reclaimed parquetry oak and mahogany. Originally forming the floors of Edwardian dancehalls and other buildings in the UK, the timber is over 100 years old, bringing a century of history and character into your home.

Featured on the Edwardian collection

Beached

Pine wood has been sandblasted and then treated by hand to emulate the weathered appearance of beach wood.

(Featured on Castaway.)

Weathered Oak

Many of our dining chairs and armchairs feature a Weathered Oak finish on the legs and arms, handcrafted in solid ash or rubberwood and stained for a rustic finish that beautifully shows off the grain of the wood.

(Featured on most dining chairs and armchairs across the collection)

Black Wood and Black Clay

A hardwood finish stained in black, featured across our dining chair collection and wall art frames. 

(Featured on the legs of selected dining chairs and wall art frames)

Chestnut

Our Chestnut finish features on the legs of selected tables across the Timothy Oulton Collection. The beautiful chestnut coloured stain is hand-applied to ash wood in our Junction collection and oak in our Tactile and Iceberg Wood collections, to create a rich, rustic finish that beautifully shows off the grain of the timber. All our wood finishes have variations in the natural grain and markings, these variations elevate the beauty and character of each piece.

(Featured on the legs of Junction and Iceberg Wood dining tables)

Reclaimed Oak (Light Natural Oak & Dark Aged Oak)

Strong and sturdy century-old oak, salvaged from the beams and floorboards of traditional Chinese homes. The timber has an authentically distressed patina, rife with the character that only weathering and age can bring. Cracks, knots, splits, and nail holes are preserved, testament to the wood's seasoned past.

(Featured on Bridge, A Frame and the legs of Monastery and Invictus dining tables)

General maintenance - all timber:

  • Wipe the table with a soft, dry cloth after each use.
  • Always clean the whole tabletop rather than one area, to avoid any patches of discoloration over time.
  • Always wipe up spills as soon as possible and dry with a soft cloth
  • Avoid using any acidic or high alkaline based cleaners, or products containing bleach, ammonia, alcohol or petroleum
  • Avoid furniture polish as over time it can accumulate and leave a residue. Remove dust with a soft, dry, untreated cloth.

Preventative care

  • Moisture and heat can damage any wood finish. Protect your furniture by using coasters and placemats to prevent marks, stains and scratches.
  • Maintain consistent humidity levels to minimize seasonal expansion and contraction of wood and prevent warping and major cracks or splits. Slight cracks are normal wear and part of the beauty of each individual piece.
  • Over time, air and sunlight will change the colour of natural wood. Occasionally rotate the items placed on your wood furniture to allow a more uniform colour to develop.
  • On our GERT and Reclaimed Oak finishes, conditioning oil can be applied and will help avoid staining but it will alter the wood colour. Only use conditioning oil if you are happy to permanently change the colour of the wood. We prefer reclaimed timber to remain in its natural state without the use of oils. Imperfections and signs of use are part of the beauty and character of reclaimed timber and should be embraced.