How to keep your oak furniture looking its best, no matter what the weather throws at it
We are delighted you have chosen a Mena Woodwork product, a great choice if we say so ourselves. Your new piece is made from beautiful raw European Oak. Oak is a natural hardwood which is renowned for its strength and durability, as well as its everlasting contemporary vibe. It will outlive countless other materials with very little maintenance which is why we think it’s the best.
Like many of us, oak has a mind its own and over time through being exposed to the elements it will develop cracks and slight twists along the grain particularly around knots and at the ends. This is a totally natural characteristic of oak, so there is no need for concern over the structural make-up of the timber, it’s all good. In fact, the joinery techniques we use are only strengthened by tension created in this movement, clever stuff.
At the start of its life your new product will arrive as a light honey tone. As it works in harmony with the outside elements (and here comes the science bit) the high tannin content in the oak reacts with the sun’s UV rays and rain. This gradually seasons the oak naturally changing it to a beautiful silver-grey colour. This is one of the reasons we love working with oak. Through nature’s own doing, your beautiful piece changes to a natural hue which will sit harmoniously in your garden.
As well as this, the tannins which are brought to the surface create a layer on top of your oak, effectively protecting the wood inside. It is important at this stage to note that these tannins can discolour stone paving, however this is easily removable with soapy water and a stiff-bristled brush. This discolouration will only occur after the first few rain showers, after that the excess tannins will have dissipated.
Over time, you may notice some natural mildew and fungal growth appear on the surface of the oak, especially if positioned near hardwood trees. If left untreated this can cause damage to the structure of the timber. We recommend regular cleaning using warm water mixed with a mild household detergent and a stiff brush or domestic green scourer to ensure an even patina.
The exposed end grains at the bottom of all our pieces are finished with a wax sealant and fitted with a rubber glide to avoid any contact with the ground which could lead to moisture getting into the grain. Bearing that in mind, should you wish to place your piece on a lawn area, we recommend placing a small piece of paving or stone under the legs to protect it.
Our upholstery is made from 16oz traditional sail canvas which has a water-resistant coating. To keep it at it’s very best we recommend using Fabsil Universal Protector which is simply sprayed on to the fabric and left to dry naturally. When not in use we recommend storing your upholstery inside, especially in adverse weather.
If you have any further questions about your product do not hesitate to get in touch, we are always happy to help.