A GUIDE TO RECLAIMED OAK FLOORING STYLES
Oak flooring and more specifically reclaimed oak flooring provide a timeless design to any space. Oak flooring has seemed to skip past any design fads and remain a classic look for decades now. Below we go over what reclaimed wood is and more specifically our own reclaimed flooring.
FIRSTLY, WHAT IS RECLAIMED WOOD?
Simply, reclaimed wood is timber that has been used for a different purpose and is now to have a second life.
To our knowledge, the first widespread use of reclaimed oak was in Tudor times when it was illegal to use freshly sawn oak in the UK, as it was all allocated to shipbuilding. As the ships were decommissioned this oak was reclaimed and used in building work and other areas. In many 16th and 17th century buildings, this antique oak can still be seen today.
THE BENEFITS OF USING RECLAIMED WOOD?
We believe that there are three main benefits to using reclaimed wood but that is not to say that there aren’t others. The first is that this wood has aged and oxidised, giving it a beauty and a character that is hard to surpass with fresh wood.
Next, reclaimed wood has been cut many years ago from virgin timber that has not been farmed and has had time to grow, producing a much denser grain. Most of the movement that takes place within the structure and fibres has already happened. This makes the timber far less likely to bow or cup, shrink or expand once it has been fixed to your floor.
Lastly, the environment. This is becoming a major concern, year after year. Though there are organisations like ‘The Forestry Stewardship Council’ (FSC) that do sterling work, we all need to do our bit. Reclaimed wood is a beautiful thing and it would be scandalous to just discard a product that is often more suitable and beautiful than its younger counterpart.
WHERE DOES OUR RECLAIMED OAK FLOORING COME FROM?
Our reclaimed timber comes from Europe. They originate from the Balkans and most of the buildings that are deconstructed are situated on the Serbian Montenegro border. Virtually all the buildings that are reclaimed were agricultural buildings, some dwellings and others, grain stores and barns.
Rustic Oak is how you’d imagine reclaimed oak flooring to look like. It has a character that can’t be matched from modern engineered oak. This type of oak provides a floor that is incredibly rich in colour. Whether that’s through sunlight, weather or years of wear and tear and cleaning. This has usually been treated for use and looks great in a more rustic setting. However, we have seen this laid in a more contemporary setting too.
Dressed oak still comes from reclaimed wood, however, the floor facing side has been cut to unearth a fresh oak face that has not been touched by sunlight or weathered from cleaning and such other treatment.
This provides a fresher and lighter floor but has rays and other markings which give it more character than modern oak. It is worth mentioning that even though it looks similar to modern oak, this type of oak has usually come from much larger trees and been expanded and contracted multiple times during its use and thus stronger. However, if you are looking for an antique oak look, we would suggest going for a more rustic look.
Parquet flooring has seen a revival in the last few years and thus become increasingly popular amongst designers and homeowners. This type of flooring uses much smaller boards and is commonly used in a herringbone pattern. Another such design is using chevron flooring. This pattern and design require the floorboards to be shaped in a rhombus. See picture to the left
Versailles panels, as you can imagine, are named after the famous palace of where they were introduced. This type of flooring requires a lot of attention and construction thus is far more expensive than the other styles. The flooring usually consists of an outerboard with a 45-degree basketweave pattern inside.
These are just 4 different types of patterns available with oak flooring. As you can imagine there are more but we feel these are the four most popular choices.
If you would like to make an enquiry about our reclaimed flooring feel free to contact us.