The Truth About Wood- Brief Disclaimer
Wood is a hygroscopic material. This means it retains or releases moisture based upon the environment it is in. This process creates actual movement of the wood, usually based off of relative humidity and or heat. This movement is best noted seasonally with expansion and contraction. The seasonal expansion and contraction occurs tangential (across the wood grains/ width) of a live edge slab. Such movement can create drying checks (cracks), twisting, warping, cupping, etc. Drying checks are a natural feature of live edge slabs that are considered character and not flaws. Epoxy-resin fills and hand-carved inlays used to fill in or restrict current drying checks from expanding usually do their job, but this is not to say that lifting or expansion may not occur over time. Wood is a natural product and will do what it wants under certain circumstances, no matter the lengthy amount of thought and prep work put into the raw material or build, nor the care taken by the end user. Below are steps we take to create the best quality products possible, along with a few things for our clients to consider regarding caring for their new purchases.
Furniture- Upon arrival of your new piece, let it relax in your home a few days prior to setup. As crazy as this sounds, this time will allow your new piece of furniture to acclimate to its new environment and find its equilibrium prior to being setup/ attached to legs or bases. This wait time is similar to the introduction of new wooden flooring in a home or business. A reputable flooring company would not just bring in the flooring and begin installing it the same day, instead they would drop it off for a few days and allow the wood to acclimate to its new environment. Keep in mind, flooring usually consists of 2"-5" wide pieces of wood. Imagine the importance of acclimation for something 24"-60" in width (remember wood moves across the grain)! Same theory. No hurries, no worries!
Avoid direct sunlight, in floor heating, placing near operating fireplaces or directly beneath vents and never store in non-climate controlled spaces. It's also preferred to keep your interior space at a relative humidity level between 40%- 60%. This usually is a concern during the winter months when dry air takes over our interior spaces. Introducing some moisture into the air is a good thing for your wooden products (and your health as well)! Lastly, do not use any harsh chemicals or abrasives on your new piece. Feel free to contact us for recommendations on cleaning products.
Food-safe/ Oil Finishes- Same as above regarding relative humidity, heat and direct sunlight. Avoid placing in a dishwasher, dry as soon as possible and never submerge in water.
*The above tidbit of knowledge should help relay the love and thought put into our products and prepare the end user on how to best care for their new purchases. A great deal of time, effort, thought, blood, sweat, tears, and resources are put into our work. We are just as invested as our clients in wanting each piece to remain beautiful for years to come!
Custom Furniture Lexington, KY