Hardwood timber increasingly used in non-traditional ways

News /
31 January 2011
Hardwood timber increasingly used in non-traditional ways

The strength and durability of hardwood timber make it an ideal material not only for flooring but as a decorative feature to lift a commercial or residential space.

“Over the last couple of years, we’ve seen architects and designers incorporate more timber into their projects, extending its use beyond purely a flooring material, to achieve unique interior environments,” said Andrew Dunn, Timber Design Association.

“As a highly versatile product, I think the environmental benefits of timber, including the fact that it’s a renewable resource, will further encourage its use in the building and design sectors.”

Hardwood timber is an excellent material for horizontal or vertical screening or as a partition between different spaces without fully closing them off. It can also be used to enclose equipment to make an area tidier and lends itself to small touches such as detailing and edging on the walls.

Leading strategic design practice Geyer recently used timber as a linking element throughout a client fitout. The aim of the project was to convey a contemporary interpretation of the traditional elements of the iconic 'Queenslander' in a commercial setting.

“Timber panelling on the walls and ceilings is a common feature in traditional 'Queenslander’-style homes. We’ve taken this idea and used the timber as a feature element, for example in the small meeting rooms where the same solid timber flooring material is wrapped onto the walls to add warmth and interest to an otherwise crisp white space,” said Tony Alberti, Geyer.

“In some areas we’ve used wall panelling. However, instead of painting it, as is common practice, we've enhanced the natural properties of the timber. Its rich colour adds a human element to an otherwise restrained and modernist design solution.”

Other elements of the fitout which have incorporated timber include door frames for large sliding doors; flooring at key junction points; high benches at gathering points; and hanging rails for newspapers.

“Timber adds impressive warmth and texture to these spaces, where the interaction of staff is encouraged and fostered by the design solution,” added Alberti.

“By applying the timber in an innovative way, a contemporary and inviting space that is truly reflective of the brand and brand values of the client has been created.”

Supplier Boral Timber has been impressed with the increasingly innovative ways in which timber products are being applied.

“We’re certainly starting to see designers and architects push the boundaries of what our products have primarily been designed to do. Timber is ideal for adding depth and character to a space and whether it’s our solid flooring product being used for doors or our engineered flooring product featured on walls, it’s great to see it incorporated into projects in these ways,” said Robyn Barnes, Boral Timber.

Boral Timber

Boral Timber is one of the largest suppliers of certified hardwood and softwood timber in Australia with a wide product range including timber flooring, structural timber, decking, decorative, and cladding.

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