How to care for your new furniture
AVOID DIRECT SUNLIGHT, HEAT SOURCES, LIQUIDS, AND EXTREMES OF HUMIDITY - all will damage your furniture:
Natural daylight will cause colour change to your furniture which is completely normal. Lighter finishes will darken slightly, and darker finishes will fade. Direct sunlight can accelerate this process dramatically. Because furniture is most prone to colour change when it is new, we recommend you protect the furniture from direct sunlight and expose all surfaces equally (including extension leaves) for the first few months.
Direct heat sources - hot dishes, cups etc. will damage the finish on your furniture. Use table protectors and placemats.
Indirect heat sources such as radiators and under floor heating can cause excessive drying of solid timber which can lead to shrinkage, splitting and movement. Do not place furniture in close proximity to heat sources. Where under floor heating is present we recommend lining the underside of solid dining tables with aluminium foil. Please note that audio visual equipment can produce enough heat to cause splitting in solid oak. Where this might be a problem we recommend using a barrier material between the equipment and timber to minimise the effect.
Liquids in any form will damage the finish and structure of your furniture if left untreated. Spillages should be dried thoroughly as soon as possible.
Solid wood is seasoned for use in a centrally heated environment which provides a balanced atmosphere in terms of humidity. Excessively dry or damp environments can therefore cause problems. Ideal conditions are around 20 degrees centigrade and 45-55% humidity. Do not place your furniture outside or in locations which are not centrally heated, such as lofts, cellars, garages etc.
We recommend the use of coasters, place mats and good quality table protectors. However the table surface should remain exposed when not in use to avoid uneven colour change or formation of condensation. To protect against bright sunlight, we recommend a cotton table cloth.
Do not use any product on your furniture unless we have recommended it! If you are in any doubt as to the finish on your furniture please call or email us for specific advice.
All of our furniture can be cleaned with a slightly damp cloth, always following the grain and ensuring the surface is thoroughly dried afterwards. A small amount of washing up liquid in weak solution can be used to cut through any grease. Do not use any product containing silicone. An ordinary soft pencil rubber is useful for removing scuffs and marks without damaging the surface, particularly on lacquered and matt lacquer finishes.
Waxed finishes will benefit from an occasional application of clear natural beeswax. A dark wax is useful for distressed finishes, as the dark wax collects and highlights any small knocks or scratches, blending them in with the distressing. On tables we recommend using a clear wax every couple of months, and a dark wax once a year or so. Cabinets will need less frequent treatment.
Soap is a very natural, and eco friendly finish, and similar to wax in that it requires re applying every 3-4 months. Apply the soap with a sponge or cloth in a thin, even coat, and leave to dry. If this process raises the grain, its a sign that the table needs more frequent treatment. In this scenario, rub back the surface with the abrasive pad on a kitchen sponge, apply another coat, and repeat until the grain doesn't raise any more.
Oiled finishes should be re-treated every 12-18 months with a good quality Danish or linseed oil. Over time the oil is absorbed into the timber, and as it does so, the surface takes on a slighty dry and dusty appearance - this is the time to re-oil. Any minor marks or scuffs can be removed with the abrasive pad found on the back of an ordinary kitchen sponge - always following the grain - then apply a thin, even coat of oil using the sponge, and leave to dry for 24 hours. More serious damage can be sanded out using coarse, and then finer, grades of sandpaper prior to oiling. If you apply too much oil, it will not absorb, and should be removed with kitchen roll before it dries. If it does dry it may crystalize, in which case the whole process needs to be repeated.
Please follow disposal instructions carefully as oil soaked cloths and paper can self ignite.
Please ask for specific cleaning and repair procedures on waxoil finishes, coloured or pigmented oils, matt lacquer, and painted finishes.
Please contact us for specific advice on repairing scratches, dents, burns, water marks, etc.
Upholstery fabric and rush seat pads: Vacuum regularly and brush with a soft nylon clothes brush. Some fabrics can be sponged, dry cleaned or washed - please call for specific advice regarding your fabric.
Leather: Do not use any cleaning fluid unless we have supplied it - you may damage the finish! If in doubt use only a damp cloth ensuring the surface is thoroughly dried. Rotate chairs wherever possible to ensure even wear. Avoid sunlight, shoes, buckles, pets etc. Cleaning kits are available in store for gloss finish Bycast leathers.