How to care for your wood table?
Wood is a natural product, and by its very nature has a grained surface. Your table will have been planed and sanded many times in the production process to make the top as smooth as possible, and then finished with a product such as a wax or varnish. There is still the possibility of water impregnation despite all of this preparation.
For this reason, you should try to avoid water sitting on the surface of the table. Wipe up any spillages as soon as you can with a soft, dry cloth or kitchen roll.
Any small dents, scratches and blemishes can be repaired but sometimes they add to the character of your table, and tell its life story. When buying a table from us, on delivery you will receive a small quantity of the finishing product we have used (generally an Osmo wax) to use should you wish to repair any such damage that occurs during its life with you. Use as thin a layer as possible on the affected area, and rub in with a circular motion. One of the great benefits of this particular product is that you do not have to do the entire table surface and can do highly effective spot repairs.
How to clean your wood table?
As we have said above, quickly remove any water or sticky substances from the tabletop with a soft, dry cloth. For general cleaning, we recommend using micro-fibre cloths. Have one of them slightly damp, and work it with the grain across the tabletop. Immediately afterwards, use a dry cloth to take away any residual moisture from the table. Try to avoid using any polishes that are silicone based as these can penetrate the finishing product.
Using a polish can over time change the characteristics of your table, as the polish will slowly build up layers on top of the finish we have applied.
What wood to use for a table?
Almost any wood can make a good table, but some of the harder woods are generally preferred.
OAK is often seen as the King of wooden tables, and we use it extensively. It is hard, robust, has an interesting grain pattern, and can come in a wide variety of colours from an almost white American oak to a treated and very dark brown antique oak finish. Highly stylish, desirable and will last for generations.
SEQUOIA is a rare hardwood, often described as the most expensive wood in the world It has a beautiful creamy outer section, with pinks and browns at the centre. It is hard to find good quality material to use, but I have a few pieces available in my collection
ASH is also very popular, as are CHERRY and PINE. We can source all of these, as well as many others if you have a preference.
RECLAIMED HARDWOOD, which is well used and shows real character, can make beautiful furniture. We have used floorboards from a Welsh Chapel and shelving from a Victorian factory amongst other items. For a truly industrial style, we also use reclaimed scaffold boards and can finish them with new metal edge straps to complete the look. All reclaimed wood is planed and sanitised prior to manufacture.
We like to use metal legs for their on-trend stylish look and durability. We can use wood when the design (or customer) requires it.
Popular online auction sites like Ebay have dozens of listings for metal table legs. These are not customisable, and of a much lower quality of steel and manufacture than we will ever use. Our industrial style table legs are individually designed by us and manufactured by a forge local to our barn. Because of this, we can use any leg design on any table, and vary the heights and widths endlessly to achieve the perfect result. The cheaper legs have a straight top edge, meaning all the fixtures are in a row. This gives perhaps an adequate lateral stability but does nothing for the longitudinal steadiness of your table. We build that into our legs with tabs perpendicular to the top edge, again bringing an often unseen or thought-of improvement to our tables over those using mass produced products.
Having mentioned fixtures, it troubles us when we see other listings referring to using screws to attach the legs to the wooden top. As a fixture, it would possibly suffice if the legs were only ever screwed on once. Each time the screw is removed and then put back, it can gradually wear out the hole, leading to weakness. We take the extra time and trouble to inset nuts into the table for bolts to securely fasten the legs. The legs can then be removed hundreds of times with no adverse effect.
We were recently incredibly lucky to find a few pairs of Victorian cast iron table legs in a barn (not our barn unfortunately!) and after a period of negotiation, acquired them. These are extraordinarily heavy, and beautiful objects in their own right. We had to thoroughly clean off 100 years of dirt, strip them down, replace all the bolts then undercoat and prime them before spraying them in the original black. They will look magnificent with a farmhouse style tabletop and should easily last another hundred years.