Out of all the internal materials that we build our homes with, it is oak which we find takes precedence over all others. Although our houses are built with bricks and mortar, our homes are built with love and pride with much of this being shown through the objects that we use to decorate it.
In fact, oak has been the staple of British homes for hundreds and hundreds of years. Although once upon a time oak was used in the homes of only the exceedingly rich and powerful, used as a display of wealth and power, it has since become a much loved material found in the homes both up and down the United Kingdom.
Of course, it is not only a piece of oak furniture which the country has fallen in love with, but it is the tree itself.
In fact, the humble oak tree has been awed and even worshipped for thousands of years; with both ancient Greek and Italian cultures attributing the tree to their most powerful of Gods. The Greeks themselves said that upon the stirring of the oak leaves, they could hear the deep and wise voice of Zeus himself.
It is not only religion where the tree takes precedence, fore the tree has also been the semiotic symbol of power for both political parties and armed forces alike, such as the United States armed forces wherein the tree is used to symbolise rank.
Indeed, Britain’s very own Conservative Party has on its logo a mature Oak tree; placed to inspire loyalties about everything that is good about Britain and the party.
Besides of course conservatism and military usage, oak is respected for its natural strength, durability and beauty; something which is blatant when we realise just how much oak can be found in our homes. Not only do we find solid bookcases and cabinets made of oak wood, but also internal oak doors are commonly found in our homes.
This is great, because if you choose to install solid oak floors into your home; this can actually help sell your house quicker and raise its overall value. Although buying engineered wood will in no way reduce the value of your home, the obvious benefits of solid oak wood are obvious, not to mention that if looked after properly, your floor will last for generations.
But what does oak say about your home?
If you’re looking for something sleek, chic and contemporary, then oak probably isn’t for you. A house that is filled with glass tables, cold steel and white walls will probably not compliment a piece of oak furniture in the same way that a steel and glass desk will.
As oak has been used in the United Kingdom since around the seventeenth century, it is a material that is considered homely and one which welcomes inhabitants and guests alike into a home with a warm, cosy atmosphere.
As life is moving now faster than ever however, should the future lay within the realms of IKEA and their flat packed innovation, or should we instead cling on to what is worthy and solid?