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Andrew Crace Traditional, Contemporary and Bespoke Garden Furniture

Traditional, Contemporary, Bespoke Interior & Garden Furniture. High Quality Genuine British Products Made in Much Hadham, UK.

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High Qulaity Oak/Iroko Garden Furniture Entirely Made in Britain

Andrew Crace, Bourne Lane, Much Hadham, Hertfordshire SG10 6ER, UK. Tel 01279 842685

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All of my garden furniture is made of hardwood Iroko or English Oak.

Scientific name is Chlorophora Excelsa. Iroko is a unique and durable timber. It has properties similar to Teak. It is resistant to rot and does not need varnishing. It can be naturally left outside and its colour will be gracefully weathered  into a lovely silver grey. It can also be painted.

Oak is a wonderful wood to work with, not only is it enjoyable to work, but a sweet perfume pervades the whole workshop here in Much Hadham. Oak also has an unsurpassed history in its use in England for ship building, timber framed buildings and furniture for strength and durability. English oak even gave us the word ‘robust’ from the Latin Quercus robur.

Naturally oak exhibits attractive features in its grain and texture, medullar rays will often be visible in many components in the furniture and pin knots, cats eyes and cats paws are a feature of oak furniture may be present where the strength and stability of the wood and construction will not be compromised. The variation in colour and grain along with the minor knots makes each piece of furniture unique. If the furniture is used outside and allowed to weather to a silvery grey colour, natural checking will come and go according to the humidity of the wood and its surroundings. Oak will harden as the years pass and silently build an inner strength.

I use only prime grade wood which is specially selected and each piece of furniture is designed with the natural properties of the wood together with good joints as an integral part of the process of design and construction. The sections of wood used are always more than adequate for their likely loading and intended use.

The craftsmen preparing the components and constructing the furniture will have discarded any wood or components which they consider will affect the integrity of the furniture they are making.

When used outside I recommend the wood to be coated with a clear preservative (such as Cuprinol clear preservative) - this will add a little oil to the surface of the wood in the first season. However additional benefits include protection against algae growth on the wood surface allowing a most beautiful silver patination to develop.

I do not recommend treatment of oak with boiled linseed oil or other more hi-tech oil finishes. Outside, the natural silver grey (without oil) is most attractive, whereas oiled wood needs regular re application and will cause the wood to eventually deepen through dark brown to black. Used inside, oak will develop a natural polish with use over time, and wax furniture polish can be used to accelerate the process deepen the colour. Or as with my own kitchen table a scrubbed surface has enhanced the grain by gradually removing a fraction of the softer wood between the harder medullary rays.

I only use renewable timbers which I buy from leading and reputable UK-based suppliers/importers who are members of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). Suppliers must have a FSC certificate, and a strong commitment in Environmental Policy. I regularly request suppliers to provide on demand a FSC certificate to make sure that timber is sourced from ethically managed or FSC approved forests.

Recommended and Useful Website : Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)