Real wood is indispensable in your interior . Wood is durable, beautiful, warm and versatile. There are so many types of wood and so many finishes. And a suitable application can be found for every interior design concept. In this article, we list some basic principles for you and provide tips to consider when using wood in your interior.
Of course, at Stilst we are an advocate of responsible forest management and therefore sustainable timber. Fortunately, almost all European-grown woods are responsibly sourced. And they are beautiful, too. Examples include ash, oak and walnut. With tropical hardwoods, responsible forest management is by no means the norm. And why get wood from faraway countries when we have such beautiful woods in Europe? For outdoor use (for example, decking and in civil engineering), tropical hardwoods such as azobé are the only options suitable because they are so resistant to weathering. For interior applications, we stick pretty much to European wood as far as we’re concerned.
Oak, ash and walnut
One of the best-known wood species is oak. Oak has beautiful markings and a beautiful, caramel brown color. In addition, oak by itself has a wonderfully sweet, somewhat spicy fragrance. Another, slightly lesser-known type of wood is ash. Ash is slightly lighter in color than oak. It also has a very nice, characteristic markings and also smells very nice. It is very suitable for steam bending and is also very resilient. Therefore, it is also widely used for broom handles, shovel handles, as well as gymnastic equipment. Since both oak and ash have such a beautiful color of their own, we favor a matte finish that is as natural as possible. Walnut is a lot darker than oak. Untreated, it is somewhat dull and drab but with the right finish, it takes on its deep, dark brown color and the texture of the wood comes into its own.
Other European woods
Other examples of common European woods include beech, maple, elm, cherry, robinia, poplar, pine and spruce. Beech and maple are light in color and generally with little markings and thus look somewhat dull. Elm and cherry are redder in color where elm in particular can have lush markings. Robinia is a type of wood that can be suitable for outdoor applications because of its very good weather resistance. Therefore, it is the only European wood species that can somewhat compete with tropical hardwood. Poplar, on the other hand, is soft and light, both in color and weight. Pine and spruce are the only softwood species in this list, with spruce being used primarily as construction timber in the Netherlands. At Stilst, we mainly use oak, ash or walnut in our furniture and interiors. And we generally choose one of those woods for a balanced pallet.