Submitted by Megan Avila on Thursday, May 30, 2019 - 08:51.
The world of timber frames is ubiquitous to Douglas fir, treated with an oil, and left to mellow over time to a golden hue. It’s classic, bringing to mind the mountain home with a two-story vaulted great room and a wall of windows overlooking a vista. Bring us a mug of hot cocoa and let us snuggle by the fire.
That’s not all timber frames can be, though. Take your species of choice and add a custom finish. The advantage to the design professional is a huge color palette of options and to the homeowner the ability for timber to flex and fit many styles. We like it because it gives us a chance to play, to bring a material we’re intimately familiar with into another existence.
Some finish options are less complex; a white wash for example. Others are multi-step recipes developed specifically for a client’s tone and hue. Either way the finish can enhance a frame’s purpose in the design, adding an element of contrast to other wood pieces or setting a stylistic intent.
Color isn’t the only choice in finishes. Custom textures such as hand-hewing, rough sawn, or wire brushing can add interest and soften the timber shape. Shou Sugi Ban, the Japanese process of charring wood, can raise grain allowing a color to take on a new depth.
In the end, our goal is to meet the designer, builder, or homeowners’ vision and deliver a frame with a high-craft fit and finish. So if the materials natural color isn’t jiving with your plan, let’s experiment. There’s a world beyond oil that we love exploring. And if you’re a traditionalist, come join us–our heart still beats for that warm glow and homey timber smell.