Pine and oak furniture buying guide

When it comes to furniture, there is no look as good as wood. Not only does wooden furniture offer a timeless elegance to any room, it also lasts a lifetime if it's properly looked after. One of the most enduring types of wooden furniture is oak. Great for homes with a traditional feel, there are a huge number of different oak furniture items out there. From dining tables to oak chairs, and stools to oak beds, there is ample choice to add a rustic charm to your home.

As an alternative to the hardwood of oak, pine offers another fantastic material for home furniture. Complement your house with pine beds, or pine dressing tables and add a special finish to bedrooms. The beauty of wood is that it goes with many different themes and styles. So, if you are looking for some beautiful pine and oak furniture and don't know where to start, just read Tesco's buying guide and you will soon see the wood through the trees.

Choosing your furniture

When choosing any piece of furniture, the first thing to think about is function. Ask yourself what it is you want the furniture to do. This may seem obvious, but not all products are made equal, and a table that you plan to use every day will need to be more hard wearing than one for occasional use. If you are seeking oak shelving units, then think about what you are planning to store in them. A particular oak chair may be more attractive than another, but ask yourself whether you need a durable chair for sitting at the kitchen table every day, a decorative living room chair, or a product for the study.

Once you know exactly what you plan on using your furniture for, it's time to get the measuring tape out. Knowing exactly how big a space you have is useful even for small pieces of furniture like beside tables. You don't want to go to the effort of buying and moving a new pine dining chair to find it doesn't fit behind the dining table.

Now that you know the dimensions required and the purpose of the furniture you can think about style and quality. The appeal of oak furniture may never go out of fashion, but make sure you are aware of the quality of any furniture you are considering buying.

Wardrobes or set of drawers may only have oak cladding, and in fact be primarily made from a lower grade of wood. It is common for certain items of furniture to be a mixture of materials, but if you want a 100% hardwood chest of drawers then make sure that is exactly what you are buying. Inspect items with care, or if you are buying online check out the key features closely.

The imperfections, knots and grain of the wood are all features that give your furniture its aesthetic qualities. While any natural material is bound to have its own unique imperfections, you will want to ensure that there are no flaws in the production or the finish. If it is an oak wardrobe or set of drawers, make sure that the drawers open and close smoothly and that any doors are well attached and close flush to the frame.

Oak or pine chairs and tables should not wobble, and there should be no visible gaps between the different sections of wood - these factors indicate high quality construction. It is also important to check that the colour (or stain) is consistent throughout the piece.

Flatpack furniture

Furniture comes either pre-assembled or flatpack. The benefits of flatpacked furniture are that it is far easier to transport and deliver than pre-assembled furniture. This is especially true of oak furniture, as it can be very heavy. Most flatpack furniture is easy to assemble and requires no more than a hammer or a screwdriver to get the job done.

Pine home furniture

Ideal for household furniture, pine boasts a recognisable smell and attractive look. It is also lighter and tends to be more affordable. Three of the most popular types of pine for home furniture are Scots pine, southern yellow pine, and white pine.

As it takes paint extremely well it is a popular choice for people looking for colourful or white wooden furniture, though it can also be treated and left with its natural appearance.

Oak furniture maintenance

With a little care and attention there is no reason that your hardwood and oak furniture can't last a lifetime. First things first: condition the wood.

This involves adding an oil or stain as soon as you get the item home, which adds a protective layer that helps boost the durability of the wood. You can leave it untreated if you prefer a more natural look, but beware that you are foregoing extra protection by doing so. In the first few years of having the oak furniture you should try to treat the wood every few months, after that it can be done as needed.

Any wooden furniture should be kept out of direct sunlight and away from radiators, as this can fade or damage the item. It is a good idea to regularly swap any items like vases or fruit bowls that are placed on your oak furniture. This means that the surface isn't worn down in the places where these ornaments are displayed.

Browse durable pine and oak furniture with Tesco and enjoy great products for bedrooms, kitchens and living rooms.