Woodform Architectural reveals that American White Oak and Spotted Gum are particularly favoured by Australian interior designers among all timber species, especially for cladding and batten applications.
Designers are known to develop individualistic styles as their body of work grows, with their preferences for materials becoming more specific. In Australia, certain timber species have become more favoured over others; for instance, many interior designers have, in recent years, become partial to American White Oak.
American White Oak has a light-coloured sapwood with the heartwood in a light to dark brown range. Straight-grained and with longer rays than Red Oak, its surface features make it ideal for interiors where designers aim to achieve a clean yet compelling look.
There are other advantages too: Being widely distributed, American White Oak is readily available in a comprehensive range of grades and specifications. Though hard and heavy, the wood is comparatively easily machined. American White Oak may be vulnerable to shrinkage unless installed with expertise, but its consistent and appealing colouring, cost-effectiveness, and ease of matching with the joinery and veneer keep it in high demand in interior design.
Another popular favourite, the Spotted Gum is an Australian native hardwood preferred by many architects for exterior applications due to its attractive markings, vibrant colour palette, and natural strength and durability. Sawn timber from this species is widely available throughout Australia.
Spotted Gum’s sapwood is usually white to light brown in colour while its heartwood ranges from light brown to dark red-brown hues. The presence of a wavy grain that often produces a fetching rippled effect makes this timber species a preferred variety among architects. Spotted Gum accepts paint, stain and polish while its natural greasiness allows easy machining.
American White Oak and Spotted Gum have Forest Stewardship Council certification along with the Australian Forestry Standard's Chain of Custody certification for Green Star points. Spotted Gum is also PEFC-accredited, adding to its green credentials.