Reclaimed Wood & Diamonds: Five Things they Have in Common
While you may not immediately think of reclaimed wood when you look at a brilliant diamond, they certainly share some common ground:
1. Each is Unique
Diamonds are pulled from the earth in a range of color, and varying degrees of “flaws” to separate the real diamonds from the imposters. In wood it’s called “natural variation.” We add the terms “character” and “evidence of prior use” in the world of reclaimed wood. No single piece will be identical to another. Ever. While perfect imposters abound, the unique "perfectly flawed" nature of diamonds and wood provides us a human and "real" connection to these naturally-occurring forms.
2. A Journey to Full Beauty
Only the well-trained and experienced eye can predict the value of a “diamond in the rough” before the diamond embarks on the journey to realize a full potential and beauty. The same is true for looking at a tree and knowing what it will yield – and even more true for looking at a pile of reclaimed wood and understanding the potential that awaits. Value is added in the process of grading, cutting, etc.
3. They can spark Social Wrongs and Environmental Destruction – so it matters where you buy
We’ve heard the ugly side of the diamond industry, and know the massive deforestation in tropical regions from illegal logging (this video estimates 30% of logging is illegal. Both diamonds and wood are making progress -- both for our planet and our fellow man. Look for Fair Trade diamonds from companies like Brilliant Earth, and FSC certified wood & reclaimed wood - feel free to start by looking at ours.
4. Size matters -- a lot
You can buy many many 1/10 carat diamonds for the price of one full-carat rock. Bigger diamonds are less common, more coveted, and much more valuable. The same goes if you are looking for a set of big, old-growth beams vs. a 1x4. There is a premium on the large, impressive items.
5. The Older it is, the More Interesting the History
Just as jewels handed down through generations, or sold and traveled and traded, wood earns a better story the longer it lives. The story connects us to people far away and even long gone… who drove the nail that left this oxide stain? What storm caused this water mark? How long did it take for the texture to appear on these Teak wall boards?
In the realm of treasured heirlooms, the fakes don’t hold a candle to the real deal. When something is purchased for a lifetime (or more!) something unique, precious, and special is selected. If you seek heirloom wood to join you in your journey, please talk to us at 1-800-293-8178 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Reclaimed Wood - 6 top reasons for reclaimed wood (with pictures) in interiors
Whether you love a good story or are on a mission to save the planet, reclaimed wood offers many motivations for use in contemporary interiors for wood walls, floors, custom doors and table tops.
6 – Aging gracefully with Old Wood
Where good looks and low-maintenance coincide, here lays the reclaimed natural patina wood floor. Scratches and dents from daily traffic only add to its charm and with an oil finish the light maintenance means it may never need to be sanded and re-finished. Reclaimed Pela Teak and Sawmill Oak are candidates for this kind of look.
5 – They don’t make them like this anymore: Antique qualities of Reclaimed Wood
The days of harvesting old growth timber are largely in the past. Old growth is generally more stable, more durable, and possesses unique aesthetic qualities when compared alongside new wood of the same species.
4 - Warm up a cool, modern space with Recycled Wood
We love it when modern spaces and the rustic influences of old wood collide. Reclaimed wood hints at an established longevity and softens otherwise stark and cool environments. Rich texture takes the edge off of modern angles and materials.
3 - Reclaimed Wood is a Sustainable alternative to new wood
Reclaimed, repurposed, recycled, up-cycled, salvaged, reincarnated… all words to describe the sustainable re-use of materials and eco-conscious approach of minimizing new consumption. The reclaimed White Oak top below has subtle traces of a prior life and is refined, overall. If sustainability is your motivator, ask for FSC certified reclaimed wood.
2 - The unique look of Reclaimed Wood
In a time and place where you can have almost any look you want in the printed/extruded/molded world of plastic, real, old wood is filled with substance and integrity, endless rich variety, and perfect imperfections. Some things can’t be faked. Charisma is one, and the soft silver-gray weathered face of reclaimed tropical hardwood is another.
1 - Reclaimed Wood has a special story
Every plank of reclaimed wood has lived a past life complete with a unique journey and a history. All reclaimed wood contains hints at the past through aged patina, stains, and holes. At times, the exact location and use of a particular collection can be traced and has documentation for the connection to the past, giving you a story to share as the wood becomes part of your story, as well.
For help with your project, to ask a question, or for guest blogging opportunities please connect with Anthology Woods.
Why do we do what we do at Anthology Woods?
Because we love the the Wood. We love the story. And, we love people. Every day we get to put our hands on a piece of history. We turn that history into a new story. We meet and work with amazing creative people who are designing, building and working on insanely cool projects. Really amazing stuff. We love the work, and we love that we continue the story anew.
And that story....? Sometimes the story of the wood is sensual, sometimes modest. Often exciting, occasionally mundane. But not forgotten.
The characters are revealed in the texture and hue of the grain, the subtle dents and nicks, or a dark stain.
More often the history is subtle… revealed when the materials are worked. The rich and earthy aroma that is released, the foreign objects embedded within. You can smell the history. You can feel the heft and weight of it. You can see the accumulation of dirt. A quick swipe of the hand reveals the smooth burnished surface where a thousand feet have trod or a hundred hands have touched. Where men have stomped their boots, or exhaled a breath of tobacco smoke. Where animals were tended, the sick nursed, the criminal restrained, children taught, or where two lovers lived out there dying days, quietly beside the roaring fire.
What heavy object was dragged across this floor? What stray bullet wandered into this barn beam? Whose coat hung from this nail? What happened to the lamp that leaked oil here? Did they really make beer in these tanks? Brine pickles? How many people crossed these bridge timbers before their usefulness expired? A tree cut in northern Michigan. A boat-ride on Lake Superior. The wood dragged, hauled, floated, rolled, and worked. A warehouse built in Chicago. The logger. The millwright. The carpenter. The banker. Slated for redevelopment the beauty recaptured, given a new life. Timbers reborn. The legacy continues.
Reclaim your passion.
Reclaim your inspiration.
Reclaim your design.
Reclaim your story.
Janka Hardness: Help selecting the right floor
If you're evaluating wood flooring options, you've probably seen the term "Janka rating" or "Janka hardness" tossed about. You may have seen it on our technical specs. Without going into the details (you can check out Wikipedia for that), Janka is a numerical value that helps you determine how hard a species of wood is -- how likely a stiletto heel is to leave a permanent impression in the surface.
A 120 pound woman in a tiny heel will exert something like a million pounds of force in that tiny area (ok, it's not that much -- but it's a lot), so you can count on almost any wood floor to gather wear, patina, and yes tiny impressions from those who walk upon it...especially if they happen to drag in a pebble. One thing we love about the natural reclaimed patina of Sawmill Oak is the fact that it already has surface variety, so it's great at hiding traffic patterns and wear.
What is a good threshold for commercial flooring?
Around a 1200 or 1300 Janka rating is where a wood is considered less subject to surface impressions. It still happens (how could it not with those million pound stiletto heel assaults?), though these woods are considered appropriate for commercial spaces where gathering a well-worn patina is not the goal. Oak is a quintessential hardwood widely used for flooring in a variety of venues, including commercial, high traffic areas.
Can a wood with a lower Janka number be good for floors?
Absolutely. It just depends on your goals. Patina-in-place describe a floor that will show a little more character as it wears. Grandstand Fir is a classic example. Douglas Fir has been used for ages as flooring in the northwest USA. It tells it's story and has charm. Many 100 year old Fir floors are still in service, sharing little hints at their history with the patina they've earned. The higher the traffic, the more patina. Fir can be used in commercial applications if the goal is a rich well-worn patina. Teak is an example of a little harder floor capable of developing a rich patina. Both are excellent in many residential settings.
Help choosing the right floor
Having appropriate expectations for how your floor will wear can contribute to your enjoyment of it. Janka hardness helps you form those expectations. Traffic and maintenance are big factors too, of course
For help selecting the right species and look for your project, and getting the most out of your investment, email email@example.com or call 800.293.8178 and talk with one of our helpful experts.
Have a wood related question? Use the form on our contact page to send it our way!