How to care for your reclaimed wood dining furniture

reclaimed wood dining table with matching wooden dining bench

Reclaimed wood furniture has been growing in popularity for some years now, not only because it boasts authentic character, but because it is an easy, and stylish, eco choice. Reclaimed furniture is wood that is reused - generally from old beams found in buildings and barns that are being demolished, old railway sleepers, floorboards, scaffold boards, and even old boat timbers. It is an planet-friendly way to give old timbers a new lease of life and stories to tell, rather than the alternative, which is either burning or rendering it to landfill.

The rustic furniture pieces created from reclaimed wood are not designed to look new - rather they should proudly show tone variations, knots and holes from where the nails have been hand removed, all of which give the furniture tonnes of genuinely unique character and history that you can only achieve with new timber. It is homely, warm and comforting, yet stylish and current at the same time. With the right care a reclaimed dining table, sideboard or chest of drawers will be a part of your home for many years to come.

How do you care for reclaimed wood?

Reclaimed wood is a natural product that will react to its environment, therefore, when you first welcome a piece into your home it will take some time to "settle in". During this time it is a good idea to wax it regularly using a lint-free cloth - say once a month for the first three months - especially on surfaces that will be frequently used. After this time, you can give it just a thin layer of wax around four times a year to keep it looking its absolute best. 

close up of reclaimed wood dining table and brown faux leather dining chairs

A reclaimed wood dining table is very forgiving, making it the ideal choice for a busy family home, especially if you have young children. Small scratches and dents can be easily blended by simply using clear wax and because a rustic table already has natural splits and nail holes, any small new scratches will be indecipherable. There are many waxes on the market and some rustic wood dining tables will have a slight tint to the wax. If this is the case, take a quick photo on your phone and ask your local hardware store for advice on colour and the best type of products to use.

Some tables are finished with oil, again this is something you can easily find in hardware stores and apply as necessary to protect your wood dining table and keep it looking as good as new.

Daily care and maintenance

As you would with any type of wood furniture, we recommend using placemats and coasters to avoid heat and water ring marks. You should also pop something underneath a piece of paper if you are writing to avoid marking the table through the paper - if you have chosen an especially rustic finish, this will be essential to provide a smoother writing surface.  When it comes to spillages, don't panic! Excess water should be wiped up as soon as possible, but as long as you don't leave puddles of water, your stylish dining table will be just fine. We do not recommend using wood polishes as they contain silicone that build-up over time - a dry lint-free cloth is fine or a damp cloth with a little mild detergent on a regularly waxed table is all you need to do!

reclaimed wood dining table with polished silver crossed legs and glass top

Reclaimed wood tables, such as the stunning Luxe Kensington Reclaimed Wood Dining Table above, can be incredibly heavy so when you move your furniture please don't drag it, as this will weaken the joints. It is always best for a couple of you, or more if your table is particularly solid and heavy, to lift the table and gently set it down in its new position. In addition, if possible, avoid putting your dining furniture in direct sunlight or near a heat source. 

Bring in the professionals

If your treasured piece of reclaimed wood furniture gets particularly damaged and you don't feel confident to mend it yourself then this is when you should get the professionals in. There are plenty of companies that can send a fully qualified furniture technician to your home to carry out a repair quickly and easily.  And because reclaimed wood is so forgiving, these experts can do amazing things and treat a whole range of issues. Phew!

close up of small round dining table in reclaimed wood

Peace of mind

No matter how careful and cautious you are with your reclaimed dining table, life's little accidents are unavoidable. We understand this, so when you buy any of our luxury furniture from us you can also purchase a 5-year protection policy with a convenient one-off payment. This will cover your furniture for accidental stain damage, including food, drinks, ink, make-up and candle wax, as well as accidental scratches, chips and more.  It's better to be safe than sorry, right?

No matter what type of interior scheme you're coveting, whether that's a classic farmhouse table or an uber-cool industrial dining table, reclaimed wood is the magic ingredient that will pull your look together. Not only is it the eco-friendly choice, but the timbers are strong, durable and overflowing with character, bringing bundles of style to your dining space.

Do you have a reclaimed wood dining table in your home? Did you choose a wooden dining bench or some faux leather dining chairs to go with it? We're a nosy bunch and would love to see how you style it. Follow us @modishliving to see how our customers style our furniture and get ideas and inspirations for your own home. 


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