Solid wood is diverse and durable, and with an enduring beauty it is the perfect material for our products. We use three types of sustainably sourced wood for our lighting - ash, oak and walnut - and solid oak or ash for our furniture. You can request a wood sample if you'd like to compare and contrast the suitability of each finish for your home.
Our design and workshop teams have learnt through trial and error which woods respond well to the natural and ecologically sound process of steam bending and temperate hardwoods lend themselves naturally to steam bending. Sycamore, beech, cherry, hazel and birch have all been used in the past but ultimately ash, oak and walnut are the trio of woods around which our lighting and furniture is based.
Because of the steam bent nature of many of our pieces of furniture and lighting it is important that they are stored or used in dry environments (if kept in storage, climate controlled storage is essential) to ensure their longevity. For more tips on looking after your Tom Raffield product and prolonging its life for future generations, please read our product care guide.
Beyond that it's really a matter of how the different woods effect the light and how they work with in your individual space.
Ash is our palest wood and when cut thinly light emanates through the grain producing an intense orange glow. It has a slightly narrower grain compared to oak but like oak will darken gradually over time.
Oak is our mid-colour wood and when illuminated produces a striking contrast between the inner golden glow and darker wood outside. Used in quality furniture production it fits into many other rooms and decoration schemes. Over time sunlight will cause oak to darken and mellow.
Both oak and ash are readily available in the UK and grow in the woodland around us. Most of our ash and oak is native and sourced in the UK and Cornwall, with some coming from Europe.
Walnut is our darkest wood. When illuminated it turns a rich golden colour, contrasting with the silhouetted dark exterior and producing stunning warmth and shadows.
Because we use the process of steam bending to form many of our pieces of furniture and lighting of this it is important that Tom Raffield products are stored or used in dry environments (if kept in storage, climate controlled storage is essential) to ensure their longevity.
Please get in touch to request a wood sample or if you need help choosing the right wood for you.