Timber certainly isn’t a new concept when thinking of building or decorating your home. It’s a sturdy, sustainable and visually pleasing material making it a timeless addition to any space. Whether you’re building from scratch, renovating, adding an extension or simply upgrading your décor, there are plenty of ways you can make more of timber in your home.
Those of you lucky enough to design and build your own homes will know all about the ways we use timber in construction. What you might not be aware of are the benefits of its use in the structure of your dream home. Wood is obviously durable, but is also reusable, recyclable and renewable (when sustainably sourced). It is the ideal addition to provide your home with insulation, both thermal and acoustically, not to mention it is extremely cost effective.
It’s the ideal material to incorporate when putting together your building plans. Just make sure you do all the research and consult the professionals to make sure you get the most out of the timber you choose – when done right, the structure you design can provide you shelter for decades to come.
It’s easy to overlook the many ways we use timber in our homes, to think of the internal structure and forget about all the ways it can be used both externally and internally. If you haven’t already, here’s your sign to incorporate some wood into the décor of your structure. This can take form in several different ways including wooden doors, hard wood floors, wooden benchtops or even a timber feature wall.
Not only is it a relatively inexpensive material, when done well, timber can elevate your home and provide an undeniable warmth. It’s also great to bring a special natural feel to what could otherwise become quite a cold and industrial décor. As it is with most quality materials, timber requires a bit of TLC if you want that fresh look to last. When properly cared for, wooden additions to your home have been known to outlast their plastic (and other man-made counterparts). If you want to properly maintain and really get the most out of your timber, follow these simple steps:
Wooden Doors and Feature Walls: many of us have fallen into the trap of overlooking our doors and walls when doing our regular clean. Unless there is a particular mark or stain, they get left untouched (sometimes for years). These age-old favourites are relatively low maintenance but in order to get the most out of them, it is recommended a gentle wash with a mild dish soap roughly twice a year. Just don’t forget to thoroughly dry them afterwards.
Hardwood Floors: whilst coming in and out of popularity in the last 50 years, many of us agree that hardwood floors are simply timeless. These are a fantastic way to bring a rustic vibe to your home. Caring for this type of timber can vary depending on the amount of foot traffic and whether your home is a ‘shoes off’ space. Generally speaking, hasty cleans for spills, regular sweeping/vacuuming and a good timber floor cleaner once a month will keep it looking fresh. It’s also recommended to refinish your timber flooring every 3-5 years.
Wooden Benchtops: This one can be a little trickier to maintain – you should be prepared to put a bit of effort in – but the results are simply lovely.
Wooden benchtops can be extremely multifunctional. The installation of a ‘butchers’ workbench’ brings all the style along with a built-in chopping board. When caring for this part of your home, it’s important to focus on moisture. It’s no secret that the kitchen can be a wet part of the home. When wiping down these surfaces it’s important to use a damp cloth opposed to a wet one.
It’s also recommended not to use multipurpose cleaning products as they often contain chemicals that could deteriorate your benchtop. Where you don’t plan to use the counter as a chopping board, it is also imperative that you oil the surface regularly/as required. This helps prevent the penetration of water and will work against the swelling of your timber or any bacteria growth from within. They sound like hard work, but they really are a must have timber addition for any home.
Once you’ve got the inside of your home all wooden and cosy, it’s time to look at how you can include this amazing material in the external parts of your home – most notably your garden. Limitations for this will undoubtably stem from the size of the space we’re working with, but don’t fret, even if your garden space is ‘fun sized’ there are ways you can incorporate the special timber look.
The Trusty Deck: the glaringly obvious way to use timber in your outdoor space is to install a deck or balcony area. Timber is the ideal material to use here due to its durability and flexibility for design – not to mention, it just looks good. There are plenty of different wood types that are suitable here and you can definitely shop around for the color/tones you want.
When you hit the local hardware store, don’t forget to pick up some items to maintain your lovely installation. First up you’re going to want to hunt down the best product for deck protection which will likely be a type of deck coating or sealant to help protect your wood from the elements. It’s recommended that you reseal your deck every 3 or so years depending on foot traffic. In between this, you’ll want to invest in a quality timber deck cleaner to keep it in ship shape and looking fresh.
Wooden Planters: The other great way to incorporate some timber into your outdoor space (no matter the size) is the age-old wooden planter. These can be large structures that house a whole host of vegetables and flowers, or teeny tiny and ideal for a few favourite herbs.
This addition is also invariably low maintenance – it’s only the caring for the contents that will cost you time and money. These beautiful additions require little to no maintenance and are a simple yet lovely way to add charm and character throughout your place.
There are a number of rich and rewarding ways you can make more of timber to your home.