What is reclaimed wood?

Simply put; reclaimed wood is salvaged, recycled or repurposed wood from diverse sources -old wooden structures like houses, boats, cattle barns, warehouses, railway sleepers, shipping crates and pallets etc. The timber recovered makes for a very wide and eclectic range of wood ranging from mango, teak, and oak to pine.

What Gives Reclaimed Wood its Unique Look

Every piece of wood has natural markings on it giving it their unique rustic look. The three most distinctive markings giving wood its identity are:

1. Medullary or pith rays
These are sheets or ribbons that run across the wood perpendicular to the growth rings. Pith rays allow the transmission of sap across the wood stem which help the tree heal. When the timber is sliced into boards with the growth rings perpendicular to the face of the board, the pith rays show up as beautifully, silver grain, spots or fleck markings

2. Spalting
Wood coloration caused by the presence and growth of fungi result in wonderful discoloration of the wood. This gives the wood a lovely spectrum of colors and patterns that are highly sought after by designers.

3. Growth rings
Also referred to as annual rings, these are seen clearly in cross sections of timber. This is the result of a new growth of a layer of cells near the bark. This happens every year, creating, in laymen’s terms one new layer of bark every year

Why Reclaimed Wood in Designer Furniture

What makes reclaimed wood such a sought after material for woodworkers? It boils down to 4 basic advantages/characteristics.

Aesthetics

The immense history writ into every notch, curl, coloration, graining, and weathered wear and tear give reclaimed wood a unique look and personality. What to the common man might seem an imperfection in the timber transforms into a beautiful work of art with a personality of its own under the skilled hands of the artisan.

The richness of the aged wood with the worn rustic elegance of its natural color give an aura of mature style to each piece and by extension to your room.

Uniqueness

Each piece of reclaimed wood, has its own unique feel and charm. Like fingerprints, each plank, log or block of reclaimed wood has individual markings. Be it the weathered cracking of the wood, knotting coming from age or the unique mesh of colors ; this ensures that every piece of furniture designed from reclaimed wood is unique, with its own unique story

Durability

Weathered wood has already been exposed to the elements of nature over time. It has expanded and contracted repeatedly over the years and has now fully dried making it less prone to warping or split. The denser grain of weathered wood makes it more stable, sturdy and sustainable

Environmentally Friendly

And last but not least – less harvesting of wood from the forest; upcycled wood lessens the need for additional cutting down an already dwindling forest cover, reducing the impact on an already stressed out Mother Earth.
If you want to know more about this lovely material or want to see how amazing it looks at furniture do visit www.yellowbrickroute.com

Pictures courtesy

Growth Rings picture courtesy - https://environmentalbrigade.wordpress.com/
Medullary Rings picture courtesy - www.stephenfinch.co.uk/
Spalting picture courtesy - http://ssk.uk.com/