How to Keep Natural Oak Looking Au Naturale
oak by design
oakbydesign
01423 593 794
oak by design
Joanne
"Understanding the new trend of allowing oak to retain its natural colour."

How to Keep Natural Oak Looking Au Naturale

We’re often asked by customers how they can keep their external natural oak (on porches, garages, verandahs, and other products) looking as good as it does when it leaves the workshop and arrives on site.

We sand and seal all our oak buildings and structures (tailored to suit each client) with oil prior to sending out. Ready then to face the weather as soon as the installation has taken place..

What Happens To The Natural Oak?

Without any finish being applied to oak, rainwater penetrates the timber, which reacts with the tannins in the wood. This causes the oak to ‘blacken’.

Again, without any finish being applied, the sun’s UV rays will react with the oak leaving it to ‘silver’ over time. Many clients like this look, especially with the porches.

All weathers – rain, sun and wind, can affect the appearance of the oak over time. The position of the oak structure (i.e. which direction it faces) can also affect this. Both these factors need bearing in mind when considering the oils and maintenance required.

Leaving the oak to take its natural process can have a ‘Marmite’ reaction!

We’ve found, talking to our clients that some people ‘love” the oak silvering off and ageing, and others absolutely ‘loathe’ it!!! This is why there are a number of options regarding the finishing of the oak. From a natural finish, a more traditional finish and a contemporary finish, all tailored to you….

How Can I Prevent The Natural Oak Changing Colour?

We offer 2 options of finishing (3 if you count not having anything applied).

1 –Osmo UV Protection Oil – 420

This protects the natural oak from the weather, leaving it looking light and more contemporary whilst preventing the oak blackening or silvering, providing there is good maintenance.

2- Osmo UV Protection Oil with Natural tint – 429

This again protects the natural oak from the weather and leaves it looking more natural. You will see this shade on most of our oak porches and external products. Again, this prevents the oak blackening or silvering, providing there is good maintenance.

They both:

Are water and dirt resistant
Reduce wood swelling and shrinkage
Contain biocides to prevent the growth of algae, mildew and fungal attack
Have a microporous, breathable finish which does not peel, flake or blister
Don’t require any sanding before future applications

If Au Naturale is your thing, we can provide your oak structure without applying any finish.

A recent client who lives in the Peak District, wanted her new oak porch to ‘settle in’ to her period property as soon as possible. She, therefore, chose to not have any finish when the porch was made, as she wanted the natural oak to silver off to look like part of the property.

A client from some years ago (see photos below) also wanted her porch to fit in with her 650-year old property. She had recently had an extension built on her pretty Cotswold house. She wanted both the stone and the natural oak to weather in as quickly as possible. By not applying any oil, the look has been created!

‘It looks lovely and as though it’s been here forever!’

Why not get in touch today for a friendly chat?

13 May 2021
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Andy Popple
Andy Popple

Left us a 5 star review

A fabulous service and supportive through the design and delivery process. Highly recommended

Exceptional service and beautiful flooring. Absolutely delighted with every aspect. Went above and beyond great customer service to meet our needs and timescales.

From start to finish Oak By Design have been incredible, nothing was too much trouble. Our new Oak doors are beautifully made and have really been the icing on the cake to finish our house renovations off. We have also had a fabulous outdoor oak structure with heating and we are very much looking forward to making the most of it in the months ahead. Thank you to the whole team I would throughly recommend.

A great company to deal with. Professional from start to finish and always there to assist with any queries. Highly recommended.

My wife and I recently purchased an oak porch from Oak By Design. We are delighted with the porch and it has been much admired. We did get some help assembling it but everything fitted together perfectly.

Found Oak by Design searching for a new front porch to replace a canopy and knew immediately that this was company for the job and I was not disappointed. I already knew what I wanted and Richard, very patiently, developed my basic requirements, with a number of iterations, into a full detailed design. As I live outside their site working area I decided go for supply only and to install the porch myself. It was delivered as promised and it looked great even on the pallet! It took me a while to fit but it was very satisfying and the result is fantastic. The quality of the aged oak and carpentry of the timbers is excellent. I’m delighted with the porch supplied by Oak by Design - it looks superb.

Marvellous place, so many wonderful things made from wood.

This is the second time that we have used Oak By Design for oak products and once again we weren’t disappointed. We recently ordered some internal oak doors and from the very start they were a pleasure to deal with. Joanne especially was extremely helpful and friendly, nothing was too much trouble. We were kept updated about the progress of our order. Unfortunately we needed to delay acceptance of the doors for a few weeks and Oak By Design happily agreed to store them in their workshop until we were ready for them. The quality of the doors is very high, they are very well made and finished, far better than any oak doors that you will buy “ off the shelf. “ They are all installed now and look fantastic. I would highly recommend Oak By Design and we will certainly use them again in the future if we require any more oak products. A huge thank you to Joanne and the whole team for a great service and a great product.

Oak by Design have made 2 oak framed rooms for us, sunroom at the front and and "moonroom" (photo) at the back which encompasses a shower room, work area and storage. They have been helpful at every stage and the outcome is simply brilliant. They make the whole house feel roomier and brighter and are beautiful places to be. GE North Yorkshire

My company has ordered 2 porches with Joanne from oak by design, and have more planned in the future. They've been brilliant from start to finnish. Great communication right through. And the quality of the product is exceptional. Do not hesitate to order.

Very impressed with Oak By Design. Customer service is fantastic and they were very patient in helping me ensure what I needed was the right size. Photos sent of oak cover before it was sent to me and end product was great. It was also not the most expensive either. Would definitely recommend.

I was sourcing an oak RSJ cover (circa 5m length) for my extension and found Oak by Design on the internet. All of the reviews I could were glowing and so I contacted them......And I'm so glad that I did. Joanne Fisher answered my initial call and she looked after my order from beginning to end - in terms of ensuring that I got exactly what I wanted she/they provided a superb service - everything on time - delivery in to the Peak District to suit when I wanted. The quality of the the RSJ cover is fantastic thick solid oak that matches my oak floor - looks amazing. If you want anything oak I can thoroughly recommend Oak By Design.

Ordered an oak mantle beam from Oak by Design and they quickly called to check the finer details. Unfortunatly, the beam was slightly damaged on arrival by the courier company. Oak by Design immediately arranged to have it picked by DHL, transferred back to Yorkshire from Kent, repaired and sent back within 2 days, with no quibbles. The beam is beautiful, as is the high quality customer service by these people. Fully recommend using this company. Anthony Slater, Tonbridge. Tonbridge.

What can I say, Oak By Design have been the most fantastic company to deal with. Joanne was so helpful, friendly and professional. She really seemed to care about our project, which made such a difference. We had 4 oak RSJ covers made and 2 fireplace mantles. The finish is outstanding. Everyone believes they are solid beams, which was just what we wanted. The care and attention this company will give you is 2nd to none and I would highly recommend them. Pictures will follow when we complete our project, thanks again Oak By Design. x

Oak by Design were extremely helpful at all stages of my project from helping and advising me to choose the most appropriate beam through to advice on fixing the beam. They were extremely patient with changes to my beam dimension requirements finally providing a solution to suit my project. They provided photographs on completion of the beam prior to dispatch to ensure that my requirements had been met. I was extremely impressed by the quality and finish of the beam which has become the focal point for my fireplace project. Oak by Design provided customer care of the highest quality and I would highly recommend their services.

My client was looking for ways in which to make his conversion (of an early seventies house into a period family farmhouse) “stand out from the crowd”. whilst maintaining a commercial eye on his expenditure, as the house was being converted for resale profit. Making the choice to meet with Richard and explore possibilities for incorporating some Real solid Oak features into his plans proved to be the making of the project. By taking lots of advice from Richard on both the size and structure of the components we were able to incorporate three key features. The beautiful and bold roof trusses and purlins for the open plan kitchen are simply a joy to behold. The stunning full height gable window which is directly glazed into the large framework can be appreciated from both the the kerbside and of course from within the cosy snug on the ground floor or the amazing first floor main bedroom where we incorporated some additional exposed roof beams just purely for effect. All in all it is fair to say that these significant choices certainly created the wow factor my client was looking for. Having managed to pre sell the property well before completion it in itself demonstrates the benefits of keeping these sorts of real oak features as part of a modern build. I have no hesitation whatsoever is saying that if anyone is looking to get advice and is serious about investing in quality oak products they should have no need to look further than Oak by Design. Thanks again Richard for all your help , guidance and continued support which is a credit to you and the craftsmen you employ.

From the start of our enquiry, the service provided was excellent. Joanne was a great help and the oak porch structure looks fantastic on our new build. It completely changed the look of the house. Very quick delivery could not recommend enough.

Great company, always on the end of the phone to talk through design, measurements, fitting. The Oak is very high standard, looks amazing.

I firstly used oak by design a couple of years ago for an open oak porch. They were extremely helpful and everything was delivered on time to the highest quality. The porch went together with the oak dowels provided and looked great when it was all slated in. They have also supplied me with a oak beam for a fireplace natural random finish and it looks good.

First class service and product . Our car port and steps look fantastic and blends in with the existing buildings beautifully. Would definitely recommend them.

I wish I could give more starts!! We looked at many companies before finally choosing Oak by Design. We are so glad we chose them. They were excellent from start to finish. They worked with us to find a workable design that was to our liking. Our door looks amazing (despite the building site that still surrounds it!). Their customer service is of the highest standard, Joanne could not do enough to help us. I would not hesitate to recommend them.

Amazing customer service from beginning to end . My builder was in awe at the quality of the oak porch components. Call them and ask for Joanne - what she doesn’t know isn’t worth knowing! It’s not every day you invest in a “proper” porch so do it right. You’ll definitely be delighted!

From the beginning the customer service has been superb, excellent help and advice when choosing the flooring, delivery arriving when promised and a product which is extremely high quality. We have replaced the majority of our flooring downstairs and we are so pleased with the result that we would have paid more. Fantastic.

We were looking to have a bespoke oak and glass atrium for the front of our new house renovation. We wanted to find a company we trusted, who clearly understood our brief and could manufacture and install a high quality product at a competitive price. A big ask, but OakByDesign ticked all our boxes. Jamie and the team from the initial discovery meeting to completion of the installation were fantastic. The design, material quality and installation were first class and I would highly recommend you to include them within your project plans. Thank you all. Ben and Lindsay.

Spectacular service from start to finish! great design work and support from concept to installation. The builders were amazing! So pleased with the outcome! Thankyou so so much !

Great personal service to ensure we got what we needed specific to our personal requirements. Quality is outstanding and there was a helping hand there all the way. The porch we ended up with was not cheap but having looked at others the quality of the Oak by design product shines through. Very pleased with the result and the complements from both neighbours and our builders keep coming.

I could not recommend Oak By Design more highly. Joanne and the team worked tirelessly to resolve an issue that was the result of my mistake when I ordered the porch. Great customer service.

From the moment we visited the Oak Design showroom, we knew that we were dealing with a top quality local company. Richard the owner, showed us around his design works with real pride of his product and service offering. Jamie as sales executive has discussed and agreed the options & design with costs to us and we have now implemented the first phase of our home improvement, with more work to follow. We are highly delighted with the finished product and would strongly recommend Oak Design to other interested clients. I also suggest that you pay them a personal visit at the Home Building & Renovation exhibition in Harrogate, as well as their wonderful showroom of Oak Solutions in Tockwith to get a personal guided tour.

From the initial quotation right through to the delivery and after service Joanne has been brilliant and given me an excellent product. I have just ordered another porch for another project from them and I will continue to do so for future projects . Thomas and Bell Building Contractors Ltd

Working with Oak By Design on our project was a pleasure and we were delighted with the results. Joanne was extremely helpful, quick to answer any questions and generally a great person to deal with! The quality and finish of the products - RSJ covers and Oak Windows & Doors were superb and look great. Would highly recommend working with Oak By Design and would not hesitate to use their services again for future projects!

We worked with Jamie from Oak By Design on a super project near Wetherby. There was plenty of oak in this design for the team to really show their worth - and they did. The attention to detail was excellent. If anything was not quite how the client wanted it, they were straight back to attend to this. The customer care was superb. We look forward to working with Oak By Design on another project soon.

Really delighted with the new porch by Oak by Design. It adds a super feature to my converted barn. Thanks to Joanne and the team.

Pleasure to do Buisness with

We are delighted with our porch, from Oak by Design. Not only is the porch of excellent quality and finish but their customer service could not have been better. They bent over backwards to make sure that we were happy with the porch and I would happily recommend them to anyone.

I first used Oak by Design in 2021 for a oak porch, I used them again 2023 for an oak pergola. Both times my clients have been Delighted with the finished product. Both times the product was delivered when stated, everything i needed was on the delivery. Oak by design listened to what I required for both jobs. The quality of the oak is excellent, all joints fit correctly & if I had a problem I only had to ring and speak to them. R Brown Carpentry always recommends Oak by Design when asked about oak structures.

Amazing craftsmanship from this company. The customer service from Joanne was superb. My questions and indecisiveness were never an issue and she was always on hand to offer advice and find the answers to my questions. Our oak porch has transformed the house and we are over thd moon with it. Would highly recommend Oak By Design. Joanne is an asset to the sales and promotion of this company and is very knowledgeable. Would give 10 stars if I could!

We purchased some engineered oak flooring and oak covers from Oak By Design and couldn't be happier with the finish and quality. They are spot on. Joanne was extremely helpful throughout the whole process and provided plenty of advice when necessary. Thank you

Great service by a friendly professional team, a pleasure to work with. The end result of our oak glazed leisure spa and outdoor kitchen looks fantastic. Great job

We are ‘over the moon’ with our beautiful oak porch made by Oakbydesign .From our initial enquiry to delivery and installation the service and attention to detail has been outstanding! A very big thank you to Joanne who was so helpful and friendly from start to finish which made the whole process such a pleasure. Highly recommend anyone looking for an oak porch to choose Oakbydesign . Yvonne Grant.

Having lived with our porch for over 2 years I can honestly say it’s the best addition to our house we ever made. Not only does it look fantastic the quality is outstanding. I love that it keeps the mud out of the hall and provides a seating area to remove muddy boots.

Oak by design provided our engineered oak flooring. From our initial meeting and supply of samples to the final delivery we have been provided with excellent service. Carl has been in touch throughout the process and provided updates about the lead time and expected delivery dates. We are delighted with the flooring. Very happy to recommend Oak by design.

We can thoroughly recommend Oak by Design. Not only did they provide the best of oak floors and oak staircase to suit our new, contemporary home, but they returned to make good a problem which was not their fault. Going the extra mile separates great companies from ordinary firms. Thank you Jamie & Billy. From Mike & Barbara, York.

Firstly, the product quality was superb, a beautiful oak mantle piece for my fire place, gorgeous. The installation was quick, efficient and fitter very friendly. The price was very reasonable, actually very good value. But what makes it all SIX STAR, ( but we I can only give 5!), was the customer service. When walking in the shop I was perfectly attended to, I was given samples to take home and they remembered to call soma days later to see what I thought. Order to install time was very fast for such a bespoke service. My experience was world class, great to deal with a brilliant local/small business, I totally recommend.

Excellent customer service. Very friendly. Explained in detail. Product is beautiful. Would recommend. Company sent photos of finished product prior to dispatch to confirm our happiness with their work.

Found this company by accident whilst passing through Harrogate, but well worth a visit.Great products choice with helpful friendly service. The wooden flooring and beams look great in situ and we are very pleased with the transformed room. Would recommend and use again.

Oak by design were a fantastic company to deal with. They made us some treads for a bespoke stair case from large pieces of air dried oak. They were very thorough in making sure that they understood exactly what we wanted. They made excellent suggestions for small changes to our own design in order to produce a better finished product and to manage the cost. We were very happy with the treads when they were delivered. They look fantastic and fitted perfectly to the steel frame which was made by a third party. I could not recommend them more highly.

As the owner of a local joinery business, Robert Davis Joinery, I have had the pleasure of using Oak by Design on several occasions over the last 8 years. They have produced bespoke interior products for me including Oak doors and timber moldings. The staff in the office and the workshop are always very helpful and friendly and the standard of the workmanship and materials are always of a very high quality.

Four years ago we took the decision to completely gut an old farmhouse and start again with it, we started looking for a supplier of oak to refit all of the internal doors, door casings, skirting and flooring. Our carpenter recommended Oak By Design. He wasn't wrong! All of the oak has been completely top notch. As the old house has settled into it's new skin it has moved and cracked in various places, the only thing that has been stable and unwavering is the oak. The customer service has been superb, with them continuing to supply exactly the same items, with the same quality over the course of 4 years. They even indulged our designs for furniture for our "boot room", with Shoe pigeon holes and a bench which we could store wellies under (as pictured). The doors supplied by them are reassuringly heavy and sturdy, with a proper "thunk" as you close them, cutting off sound from the rest of the house. There may be other, cheaper suppliers of oak out there, but none with the same level of quality, longevity and customer service as Oak By Design. If you want to do it right (& once!) use these guys.