Look A Little Closer; Hand Crafted Oak In Detail
Rarely do we get to take a glimpse into the world behind the scenes of furniture manufacturing, yet with just a small look at how things are made, we can understand so much more about the products we buy. It’s easy to forget that each piece of furniture we sell starts life as a humble piece of timber, that’s been carefully hand crafted by our wonderful workshop team.
We recently visited one of our global workshops with the design and development team and here’s what they told us about all those subtle details that make our Oakland range so special…
“So here we can see some of our Oakland range being constructed. At the moment its still in its natural state, so this is what it looks like before it goes through a process of being treated with several layers of protective lacquer. We loved the look of it’s pre-lacquered condition so much that we created the Natural Oak Range. We treat that particular range with a different kind of lacquer so that it retains this paler finish”
“One of the key characteristics of the Oakland range is the rounding’s on the corners and the areas sanded out along the edge profile; this gives it a more of a worn, rustic look”
“Another key features is on its surface; it has solid oak frame and an oak veneered panel in the middle. This method of construction not only looks good, but avoids the dreaded food grooves you can get with a floating solid oak panel in the middle. Using both the solid oak frame and oak veneered panels gives you this beautifully smooth top surface and an incredibly robust piece of furniture”
“This is one of my favourite parts of the process; watching the drawers being made. The craftsmanship that goes into each drawer, even thought its not seen from the outside, is wonderful. It’s attention to detail like this that makes each piece so durable. Here you can see the dovetail drawer components being made, ready for assembly”
“Using dovetail joints is a method of construction that’s as old as the hills, but it’s such an effective method that we use it in the majority of our ranges”
“We’re passionate about using traditional cabinet making techniques throughout our products and this is a superb example of one in use. Here you can see the solid oak ‘mortise and tenon’ frames being constructed along with the veneered oak panel. Mortise and tenon joints have been used by craftsmen and woodworkers for thousands of years and it’s a piece of simple engineering that’s really stood the test of time”
“Another of my favourite features in this range and the Natural Oak Range are the diamond dowels that you can see on the front of the frames. This is just a little nod to cabinet makers of the past who wouldn’t have had access to glue to give added strength to the mortise and tenon joints. They would have used simple oak pegs to connect the frames together and we’ve replicated those here”
“You can see this detailing a little closer here; the carcass of the furniture is being assembled and you can see the diamond dowels at the front. These are just for decorative purposes in our furniture, but for me it’s just a little touch that reminds us that these pieces are crafted by hand and the process has been similar for hundreds of years. Even though aspects of our technology have improved and modern life has evolved, the basic cabinet making techniques of old still work well and look beautiful”
It’s fascinating to see the effort and skill that goes into producing each individual piece of our furniture and we’re incredibly proud of our team of our talented craftsmen and women. To take a closer look at the finished article and see if you can spot all those beautiful details, click through here and take a look at our Oakland Range.