Homes & Gardens
WOOD has a quiet beauty and gives something back to a room, whether used on the floors or as furniture. It can lend a strong architectural bent – perhaps with panelling – and large pieces, like a dresser, can give structure. The thing about old wooden furniture is that each piece is instilled with humanity, having been made by hand.
■ One of the things I love about wood is its vulnerability. As soon as wood is taken from the living tree, it starts to oxidise and over time it changes colour in reaction to the light. Then, as it gets used, it develops marks and scratches, but all of this – if it is treated well – adds to its beauty and charm.
■ Dark wood has always had its place in my schemes, no matter whether it was in or out of fashion.
■ Wood has been used for millennia, so there are various styles and shapes, all with different stylistic elements. You can mix them up, but that I think takes a careful eye to make sure they harmonise. I prefer to keep historical pieces together in their own worlds within a house.
■ But I don’t mind mixing up types of wood: I think that adds depth. We have a project with a kitchen that has an oak and elm dresser, a wooden table with a painted base and scrubbed top, new elm Windsor chairs, all on top of an oak floor and the effect is warm and inviting.
BUYING CRAFTED PIECES
Skilled craftspeople are hard to come by, so I’m afraid I keep those cards close to my chest. I will say, however, that the Max Rollitt Bespoke range is our way of practising what we preach. A favourite piece would have to be our take on the Windsor chair.