Wooden kitchens have become increasingly popular again in recent times. There are a number of reasons for this: On the one hand, there is a growing realization that a kitchen is not just a workplace, but also a living space and often even the center of family life. The cozy and warm look of a wooden kitchen underlines this. Wood simply smells unique and its haptic qualities are unmatched. On the other hand, more and more consumers are also focusing on sustainability and environmental friendliness when buying furniture, Kitchens made of the renewable raw material wood are virtually unbeatable in this regard. And last but not least, kitchen buyers want a device that improves the indoor climate and releases little or no pollutants. After all, one not only wants to eat healthy in one’s own home, but also live as free of pollutants as possible. In this regard, the natural product wood is often the best choice.
Wooden kitchens: a raw material, endless possibilities
The choice among the wooden kitchens is overwhelmingly large and the offerings differ not only by the design, but also by the woods used and the different ways in which the wood is used. Here is a small overview of the different types of wooden kitchens:
Real wood kitchens
As beautiful as the term may sound, real wood kitchens are among the wooden kitchens with the lowest wood content. In principle, these are normal kitchens made of MDF boards with a veneer surface. The well-known term veneer kitchens therefore describes this type of kitchen much better. But at least the veneer is made of real wood. It is therefore not a replica in wood look. The veneer is usually sealed with a layer of varnish, which increases its durability and resistance.
In terms of appearance and design, kitchens made of real wood are in no way inferior to other wooden kitchens, but you must make a significant difference when it comes to environmental compatibility and indoor climate. But real wood kitchens are often the cheap option, if you want a kitchen with real wood surface.
Solid wood kitchens
With solid wood kitchens, you get exactly what the name promises. A kitchen made of solid wood, whose name is even regulated by a standard. According to this standard, DIN 68871, all parts of the kitchen must be made of one type of wood, apart from the back walls and drawer bottoms, and must not be veneered so that they may be described as solid wood kitchen. With furniture made of solid wood, all the advantages of the raw material wood, such as its warmth, the pleasant feel and the typical smell, are retained. In terms of price, solid wood kitchens are generally classified in the higher segment.
In solid wood pieces of wood are glued together in several layers. This has the advantage that the smaller composite pieces of wood work less strongly than is the case with solid wood. Temperature and humidity fluctuations thus leave less evidence. One disadvantage is that adhesives are used that some people are sensitive to.
Solid wood kitchens
In solid wood kitchens, as with solid wood kitchens, all parts except the back wall and drawer bottoms are made from one type of wood. However, in solid wood only boards sawn directly from the tree trunk are used. Only very high-quality wood, which has no knotholes, inclusions or cracks, is used for solid wood kitchens.
Kitchen furniture can not be closer to nature, so it’s no wonder that you can find real organic furniture here as well. These natural wood furniture is especially suitable for allergy sufferers. However, this also has its price. For solid wood kitchens are considerably more expensive to produce than other kitchens. But you opt for a kitchen, with which you not only do something good for yourself and nature, but in which you can enjoy for a long time.
Waste wood kitchens
Relatively new to the market are so-called old wood kitchens. Here wood is used, which already has a past life. Partly hundreds of years old roof beams, floors, doors or the like are processed. Of course, these woods are carefully checked and prepared before they shine as a new kitchen. So the wood must be thermally treated by the joiner to ensure that there is no pest infestation. Old wood kitchens not only have an authentic and individual character, but also set new standards in upcycling, the refining and recycling of apparent waste products. A kitchen can hardly be more sustainable and resource-efficient. Since old wood kitchens are always uniqueThese are usually not available at large kitchen manufacturers. This is also reflected in the price, and so kitchens from waste wood are usually in the upper price segment.
Which wood is suitable for kitchens?
The variety of woods is enormous. Around 30,000 species of wood are known worldwide. But only about 100 of them are processed industrially. But even among these there are huge differences. Not only in terms of color and grain, but also in terms of hardness, robustness and other properties of the material. And of course also priced. As a rule, domestic and widespread types of wood are cheaper than precious woods. Here are some examples of the most common types of wood used in kitchen production:
Maple is a fairly common tree in Central Europe. The wood is very fine-pored and can be worked well. Therefore, it has long been used for the production of kitchen furniture. It is very bright and gives kitchens a friendly and fresh character. However, the wood can also be stained and dyed very well, which makes a rich palette of maple kitchens possible.
The birch is mainly distributed in Northern and Eastern Europe and is one of the classics among the furniture woods. The color spectrum ranges from yellowish white to golden yellow to light brown. Differences in density or in the fat content of wood in birch wood sometimes cause so-called lighting effects, which emphasize the individuality of the furniture.
Beech trees occur throughout Central Europe and are also among the most widespread trees in Germany. The hard and durable beech wood makes it an ideal material for furniture. In terms of color, beech tones are dominated by yellow-red tones. Beech wood looks rather simple and natural compared to other woods. This makes it ideal for combining with other materials or other woods.
The oak, which is common throughout Europe, has been used for centuries for the construction of kitchen furniture. The tawny to medium brown colored wood is extremely heavy and hard. It is characterized by its proverbial robustness and longevity. So it is not surprising that in kitchens in country house style like to be gripped to this wood. Recently, however, elegant design kitchens made of oak are becoming more and more popular. In these, a strict lines harmonize with the expressive grain of the wood.
The alder is also found throughout Europe, but especially in Scandinavia. Thanks to the orange to red-brown color, kitchens made of alder look particularly warm and comfortable. Alder wood is light and soft and therefore easy to work with. It also takes on polishes and stains very well, which also makes unusual color variants or the appearance of much more expensive precious woods possible.
Pines are mainly distributed in Northern, Central and Eastern Europe. The yellowish to reddish colored wood is medium heavy and relatively soft. Often, pine kitchens are painted because the surface takes on very well all kinds of paintings. But even without paints and colors convinced Kiefer with a subtle pattern. In the case of pine kitchens, alleged mistakes such as knotholes are often deliberately used as a design element to underline the individuality of the kitchen.
Cherry trees are native throughout Europe. The wood is medium heavy, tough, firm and reddish-yellow to reddish-brown in color. The typical fine drawing of the wood makes cherry wood look particularly noble and valuable. This – and the relatively small amount of annual impact compared to other woods – makes Kirschbaum one of the more expensive domestic woods. Accordingly, Kirschbaumküchen are also more in the upper price segment.
As walnut wood is usually called the widespread throughout Europe walnut. Walnut has a very typical grain and is from light brown to black brown color. Due to its hardness and resistance, it is a very popular furniture wood, which is often used for the interior of kitchens. But fronts from the noble and exceedingly decorative wood can be found in modern design kitchens more and more often.
These are just a few examples of woods used in the kitchen. In the catalogs of the known manufacturers, there are numerous other species. Whether fir or acacia, poplar or ash. Each wood has its own character, and ultimately, only you can decide which wood best suits you, your decorating style and your budget.
Which worktop fits a wooden kitchen?
Worktops made of wood or in wood look enjoy great popularity, because they give the kitchen a warm and homely appearance. They go very well with white and all other bright kitchens. In the case of wooden kitchens whose fronts are not painted or varnished in a different shade, the question arises as to whether a wooden worktop is not “too much of a good thing”. Here are other materials such as stainless steel, glass, ceramic, artificial or natural stone. It is important that the worktop fits harmoniously into the overall picture of the kitchen.
How do you clean and maintain a wood kitchen?
To maintain the beauty of a wood kitchen in the long term, a little care is required. But how do you clean and maintain a wooden kitchen so that it stays beautiful for as long as possible? Depending on whether and how the wood surface was treated, sealed or painted, the care required is different. Here are some tips to help you enjoy your wood kitchen for a long time:
- Avoid detergents with a scrubbing effect. These attack the surface in the long term.
- Do not use microfibre cloths, they will act like sandpaper on the wood.
- Avoid acidic and chemical cleaners based on nitro or synthetic resins.
- Ideally, wipe the wooden surfaces with a damp cloth in the direction of the wood structure.
- Dry the wood thoroughly after cleaning to prevent water from entering the material.
- Naturally left wood should be re-oiled or waxed every one to three years to renew the protection.
It should also be remembered that wood is a living material that changes over time. Wood “works”, as the saying goes, and responds to environmental influences. For example, a permanently high level of humidity in the kitchen can cause the wood to swell over time. As a result, cabinets may warp and may not close properly. A powerful extractor and regular ventilation help to remedy this . In order to achieve an optimum humidity for wood (about 50 to 55 percent) you can set up humidifiers or dehumidifiers. It is also perfectly normal for wood surfaces to fade over time when exposed to strong light. Regular oiling or waxing has a preventive effect.