Should I have a wood worktop? Pros and Cons

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Carrying on in the series on kitchen work tops, Helen Heslop of Le Studio des Artisans explores the advantages and disadvantages of Wooden work tops.

WOOD

Wooden work tops instantly add a warm, natural and cosy feel to any kitchen and they have the advantage of going well with a wide range of colours and styles.

They are however quite high maintenance and it’s important to consider whether you have the time and energy to keep them in fantastic condition!

Advantages

• There are many different woods available to be made into work tops; Oak, Maple, Teak, Beech or Walnut to mention just a few, so you can select the exact wood effect and finish that you want.

• Wood has natural anti-bacterial properties and so as long as it is properly sealed with a non-toxic mineral oil it should remain in good shape.

• It can be environmentally friendly as long as the type of wood selected has been deemed to be a sustainable material, for example Bamboo. Check out the Forest Stewardship Council to see if your selected wood is sustainable.

• It’s a life time investment and gets better with age!. Wood is durable and even when it is scratched you can sand out the marks and re-seal.

Disadvantages

• You need to take care of wood. It scratches and can mark from spills (pay particular attention to vinegar, wine and lemon juice!). Also be very careful with water.

• Requires regular sealing with Mineral Oil.

• Most stains and scratches can be sanded out. However this takes time and patience!

Some key tips for preserving the beauty of your solid wooden work top

• Always mop up spills of water and other liquids straight away and do not allow liquids to stand for any period of time. Wipe down the work surface around the sink immediately if they are wet, and always leave the worktop in a dry state. Do not stand wet pots and pans on the worktop and leave for any length of time.

• Always use cutting boards to chop food. Do not cut directly on to your wooden worktop.

• Always stand hot pans on a pan stand or hot rods. Contact with metals such as iron and steel can cause black staining on the wooden worktop.

Regularly seal with mineral oil – You cannot over do this!

Our favourite supplier is Spekva.

You can see more from Studio des Artisans here, or contact Helen Heslop here.