Wood for the home has always been a good choice, it feels warm and soft passing these characteristics to the room it is in and who can resist touching wood, especially when it is at waist height and easy to run your hand across the top of a nice smooth piece of oak worktop!
Solid oak creates an extremely versatile and durable kitchen work surface and its strong natural grain has lots of character giving you a unique look to your kitchen whether it is matched with traditional cabinets or a modern colourful design. The oak does mature over time and will gradually darken thus constantly enhancing the finish, and the worktops have a nostalgic quality and are classic in their look, instantly becoming the focal point of any kitchen.
Because oak is hardwearing, the effective lifespan of an oak worktop can really be measured in decades, perhaps even hundreds of years if it is looked after properly, but for most, the real selling point for worktops is the aesthetics and warmth it brings to your kitchen.
The workability of an oak worktop and its almost infinite capacity for being one long length means that pretty much any size and shape you could possibly imagine can be created. It is also a great material for mixing with worktops of other types such as granite or other natural stones.
Oak has a natural resistance to water, hence why it was the first choice for shipbuilders for centuries, it does however have to be looked after and oiled to help to seal the grain. Even though it is hardwearing you should avoid unnecessary actions that could impact the overall appearance of your oak worktops – for example, you should always use cutting boards to chop food and never cut directly onto the oak as this may cause scuffs or imperfections in the solid wood surface. You should also never put hot pots or pans onto the worksurface otherwise you will leave ring marks. Obviously, accidents do happen but the beauty of oak is that with a little repair maintenance such as a light sanding, you can get rid of these marks and scratches, reapply some oil and then they are as good as new.
So you can rest assured that no matter how busy your kitchen is, your oak worktops will outlast pretty much anything else you have in there!
Next article – Oak, the classic worktop choice