Engraved Oak – Personalisation

Everything Oak By Design manufacture at their Tockwith workshop is made to order, and therefore, unique!

This enables their clients to have exactly the oak product they wish for.

Engraved oak adds the ultimate in personalisation

Oak structures, such as sunrooms, glazed porches, garages and open porches are proving extremely popular at the moment. The aesthetically pleasing, characterful look of oak must surely be part of their popularity. Glazed porches and open porches, especially, are extremely popular and on many people’s home ‘wish lists’.

The oak porch is the first part of the home a visitor experiences when visiting. Regularly styled to reflect the owners’ personality, they give people an insight into the lives of the people behind the door!

Uses include: storing wellies, logs, children’s and dog’s paraphernalia whilst others overflow with planters and lanterns. However clients use their porches, they do like to personalise them.

Oak By Design offers all their oak porch clients the opportunity to have their porch personalised with engraved oak beams showing their house name or number, as appropriate.

Alternatively, if they don’t want to have the oak truss engraved, they can have oak seat tops made (if they’re having enclosed dwarf walls built). There is the option of having the engraving along the top or along the front edge.

The photos show seat tops engraved with the different family members names on a porch in the Cotswolds.  These, hopefully, ensure all wellies are all placed in the proper place after a family walk!

engraved oak porch


The engraving machine is mainly in use to enhance and personalise their oak products.

Their clients have the choice of a number of different fonts and size for the inscription. This addition to the porch ordering process has proved very popular with their clients who require ‘That little something extra’ on their products.

The engraved oak beam service is only available on products manufactured by Oak By Design, and at the time of manufacture.

CALL TODAY ON 01423 593794


Why Add An Oak Porch?

Why Add An Oak Porch To Your Home?

Whether you decide to redecorate your home or build an extension, they will all improve the appearance of your property. Adding an oak porch can have many advantages.

The entrance to your home can sometimes be taken for granted as we use it everyday. We become accustomed to its appearance. This may have become slightly dated over time or you may have inherited it when you first bought your home. Either way, changing the entrance by adding an oak porch has the following benefits.

Additional Character

Plain fronted house sometimes needs that extra character. Whether you a have brick or stone property, adding oak to the entrance of your home will automatically add an amazing focal point.  Using air dried, seasoned oak will automatically add character as this natural product will have beautiful knots and mature cracks.

Before & After

oak porch

Extra Shelter

Protection from the elements can mean protecting you and your family after a long walk in the wind and rain. This shelter could also be expanded to incorporate seats and welly store.

A porch also provides additional shelter for your front door protecting it from the elements.

Increased Value

It’s a proven fact that adding a feature, such as an oak porch, can increase the value of any home. It’s the first impression any visitors get when approaching your home.

The appeal of a characterful, sheltered entrance can add a financial value as well as the feeling of comfort and security.

An oak porch will age and mellow over time providing many years of enjoyment. You might have an existing canopy or lean-to that needs replacing or a blank canvas to let your thoughts run wild. Either way, an oak porch can easily be created and installed to most homes wanting that extra wow factor.

Should you require further details or want to visit our showroom where full scale oak structures are available for viewing, please make contact on 01423 593794.   Or alternatively see more ideas and information on our main website www.oakbydesign.co.uk or dedicated website to the oak porch at www.oakporches.co.uk

Oak Porch - New Build Property
Oak Porch - New Build Property

Herringbone Engineered Oak Flooring

Over the last few years, we have started to see a marked increase in the number of clients asking for herringbone engineered oak flooring. They are choosing to use it in all rooms: hallways, kitchens, bathrooms and bedrooms.

This popular pattern (it takes its name from its similarity to fishbone patterns) is appearing on floors and walls internally and on paths and gardens externally. It’s appearing on wood flooring, vinyl flooring, tiles in kitchens and bathrooms and paint effects everywhere else!

The trend of mixing the colours and texture is also starting to become apparent.  The beauty of this pattern is definitely in its simplicity.

Each board is the same size and the length of the board is always divisible by its width.

An example of this is our current boards at 600mm in length by 120mm wide.



The ends of the boards will be cut square and these butt up to another board along the length. This forms a rigid ‘zigzag’ pattern.

A chevron or French herringbone is generally described when each end of the board is cut at an angle,

The beauty of modern-day herringbone engineered oak flooring is that it is available as ‘engineered’, as opposed to solid, which would have been used when it was last popular in the early part of the 20th Century.

Stability and durability are the key areas sought after for all engineered oak flooring. The movement and ‘gapping’ of solid oak flooring a thing of the past. It can be used over underfloor heating, making it a great choice in new homes.

The beauty of modern-day flooring is of course CHOICE!

We can now choose different sizes in length, width and thickness.  Also, different textures (smooth, brushed, distressed etc.) and many different colours.  Choose anything from limed whites to deep, dark solid blacks and greys.

We can even choose the grade of the wood.  From ‘Classic’ – characterful knots and grain to ‘Elegance’ with minimal knots and cleaner boards.

Client Project Links are HERE and HERE


Oak By Design Helps Local School

School Benefits From Wood Offcuts

Our workshop supervisor, oak specialist Dave Carter, has 2 teenagers who have both attended York High School.  They both excelled in Design Technology.

Whilst attending a parents evening a couple of years ago he got talking to the then D.T. teacher, Mr Sims (now the Head).  They discussed the materials used within the classes and the costs incurred by both the school and parents. Their children were happily making the items they had designed but costs were high.

Dave realised that he was in a position to help the school out by supplying offcuts of timber.  This included kiln-dried oak, door boards, waney edge oak and MDF. So periodically, Oak By Design supplies the school with their timber requirements. Dave calls into the school with the oak and catches up on the different items the students have made.

Year 7’s and 8’s make items such as models and plaques for their projects, whereas the older students, who are doing make larger pieces such as storage cabinets. This work is for their G.C.S.E’s and equivalent qualifications. For the older students, these pieces form part of their coursework and ultimately their final exam pieces.

Sometimes they may only use a small amount of oak on their projects, such as handles for a cabinet. There is always a variety of materials on hand gives them more choice and the chance to create something a little bit different.

Mr Parker, the present D.T. teacher, and Mr Sims have supplied us with photographs of some of the finished work. Over the last few terms, and the students have made some fabulous items.


A Guide to Engineered Oak Flooring

What to Look For

Once installed, engineered oak flooring can be difficult to distinguish from a solid oak plank floor. However, even a trained eye can be fooled as often as not. Even though both types of oak flooring are able to bring the look of natural wood into a home, they are very different. When to use planks and when to use engineered can seem to be confusing.

However, it really isn’t!  Engineered oak flooring behaves a little differently than plank floors do and they tend to be easier to install.

Wood floors are a classic addition to any home. Barring damage from fire or flood, a well-made and correctly installed oak engineered floor will add warmth, character and value to your home.

Originally, engineered oak flooring was developed for use on the ground floor of a home built on a concrete slab or in a basement. However, engineered oak flooring technology has exploded over the last 20 years and can be used just about anywhere.

Engineered oak flooring can be more resistant to moisture and tends to be more stable. While no untreated wood product can tolerate water standing on it, the stable moisture levels over underfloor heating aren’t a problem for most engineered floors.

The key to this increased stability and moisture tolerance comes from how an engineered oak floor is made.

This photo shows a cross-section of a high-quality, engineered wood floor. They range in thickness from 11mm to 20mm. The top layer is a veneer of the desired wood; the thicker that veneer is, the more expensive the floor will be.

engineered oak flooring
A quality engineered oak floorboard

Flooring Thickness

When this top veneer is very thin (0.6mm or so) the resulting floor cannot be refinished. For example, sanding back and the reapplying of oil etc. However, when the top veneer has a thickness of 2 mm to 6 mm, it can be refinished multiple times.

The layers in the base layer are important and also play a role in the final price. There can be anywhere between 3 and 12 layers of plywood and unfinished white wood. This depends on the thickness and quality of the finished product.

When you are shopping for engineered oak flooring, pay attention to how it’s made up.  Pay attention to the whole board, not just how the top layer looks.

With different thicknesses available, engineered oak flooring to be laid without awkward transitions between different flooring materials. The most common transitions people have trouble bridging are areas between a tiled kitchen and the rest of the house. By using an engineered oak floor, you can remove the need for large transition strips and the trimming down of doors.

Engineered oak flooring was developed for use over concrete slabs, but the thicker versions can be nailed down over a wood subfloor, the same way you would install a solid oak plank floor. However, nailing down a wooden floor is probably best left to a professional.

Engineered oak flooring can also be glued down. Glueing down an engineered oak floor is a project a do-it-yourselfer can usually take on provided he or she has a lot of time and a fair amount of experience with DIY projects. It may make more sense to have it installed if you aren’t overly confident and competent!


If sustainability is a priority, engineered wood floors tend to be a more sustainable option. This is especially true if you’re considering an exotic wood. The exotic trees that need to be harvested to make, say, a Rosewood floor goes a lot further if only a 6mm-thick veneer is going on each board.

There’s a lot of sustainability innovation that applies to the sub-layers too, so do your homework and look for those FSC logos on anything you buy.

Engineered oak floorboards will last from 20 to 100 years, depending on the thickness of the top veneer.

The best-engineered oak floorboards will last as long, and perform as well as a solid plank floor, so another consideration to keep in mind is how long you want this material to last.

Using a high-quality, long-lasting engineered wood floor won’t affect your resale value, but using a cheap one will.

The characteristics of the wood that ends up on the top layer will always play into the longevity and resilience of an engineered wood floor, though the effect is moderated somewhat.


Oak Manufacturer Puts Wheels in Motion

An Oak Bicycle

A bicycle has been made out of solid oak by a specialist manufacturer in Tockwith. This was to showcase the firm’s technical ability following an investment in new machinery.

Oak By Design has also taken on two new members to staff as it looks to expand its range of products to meet increasing customer demand.

The business produces custom-made structural buildings such as orangeries, conservatories and oak garages.  They only use seasoned air-dried oak and have invested in new wood planers and computer-controlled cutting equipment. This will enable the firm’s carpenters to handle larger pieces of oak, as well as producing more intricate and complex designs.

To keep up with growing customer demand, the company moved into a new 7,000 sq ft workshop on the Locksley Business Park in Tockwith. This is roughly seven times larger than its original site in Wetherby.

oak bicycle
oak bicycle


Director Richard Penny founded the company in Wetherby in 1997 selling reclaimed bricks and old timbers.  These were for specialist period renovations specified via architects. In 2011 the firm opened its first showroom on Kings Road in Harrogate to showcase its expanding range of oak products.

Several years later, a new showroom has been created with secured lending from Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking.

Richard Penny said. “We’ve been taking on increasing amounts of heavy construction projects such as roof trusses, porches and garden rooms.  Therefore, it made sense to ensure we had the capacity to handle this on a regular basis.”

To showcase the technical precision that the new equipment they have built a fully working, solid oak bicycle.  This is in commemoration of the now regular Tour de Yorkshire, complete with solid oak wheels, seat, cogs and chain.


Mr Penny added. “As a growing Yorkshire company, we wanted to raise awareness of the benefits the Tour de Yorkshire can bring to our community.”

“Building something as technical as a working oak bike gave us a chance to show our skill, expertise, passion and commitment. Each project we are given, allows us to demonstrates our ability to creatively solve problems for our customers.”

Gary Whitaker, relationship manager with Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking, said. “Oak By Design’s steady growth in recent years is a testament to the quality of the team’s work and Richard’s strong business acumen.

“To help drive their growth they have also recruited two new members of staff to join their team of eleven. They are on course to grow their turnover by more than 20 per cent this year. A  great achievement for an SME manufacturer in a highly competitive sector.”


An Oak Conservatory – The Hottest Trend


The blending of interior and exterior spaces with a tiled roof oak conservatory is in demand.

We are a nation of home lovers and garden lovers. Therefore, it seems only right that the current trend for blending inside and outside spaces is on the up. A garden really should be for use all year round and not just for alfresco living during the warmer months.

When you consider the benefits a garden has, it is clear to see why a room that is designed to make the most of the view outside is such a good idea. This is why over the years, the conservatory-style living space has been such a popular home improvement. Thanks to developments in technology and improvements in building aesthetics, this extra living space doesn’t necessarily have to be boring.

The oak conservatory can now really be for whatever purpose you require. From an extra lounging space to a state-of-the-art media den. The design should look like it has always been part of your existing home, bringing a feeling of permanence into the equation too.

oak orangery
quality oak conservatory

The Design

A classic glass and orangery-style oak conservatory are still popular with homeowners but many are now opting for the tiled roof extension because it suits their needs better.

The design should specifically match the original building at all levels so that it looks like a built extension, but with all the benefits of a conservatory. Crucially, a tiled roof-style oak conservatory has a fully plastered ceiling like a traditional house. Even the build process is similar.

This opens up a range of lighting options.  You could choose from integrated spotlights or downlights; keeping to one style of lighting is a great way of visually linking rooms of a home.  A concealed ceiling design will allow for this or even an integrated music system, perhaps.

A tiled roof extension maintains all the aspects of a glass roof conservatory.  It does this by maximising the glazed area while negating the common criticisms of glare in the summer and noise when it rains. A roof-style conservatory will stay cool in summer and warm in winter while making the most of your garden view.

These days the oak conservatory really can be anything you want. Both the traditional conservatory and a tiled roof extension ultimately bring extra natural light to the home.  It also provides homeowners with a feeling of being closer to nature and making the most of their garden spaces.  So, it’s a matter of deciding which sort of construction is right for you.


9 Reasons Why Oak Flooring is a Great Investment

Many people have a tendency to completely overlook Engineered Oak Flooring. This is because it is initially more expensive than carpet and linoleum; however, there are many great reasons which far outweigh the initial additional cost.

Take a look at some of these reasons:

1- Good Quality Oak Flooring Last for Decades

Carpets often need replacing every 5 years or so, due to stains, holes or shabbiness from everyday wear and tear.

You will find that with minimal maintenance, these oak floors actually look better as the years go by.

2 – Oak Flooring is Easier to Clean

The reasons for this are fairly obvious. A simple brush or light vacuum keeps your wooden floors looking great.

If dogs or children have dragged mud through the house a damp mop removes the mess with ease.

3 – Oak Flooring is More Hygienic

There are some fairly horrifying reports out there detailing the parasites that carpets can harbour.

These allergen producing dust mites, fleas or dust play havoc with allergy sufferers.

A wood floor eliminates. This is particularly relevant to dog and cat owners too.

4 – Wood Provides a Great Medium for Underfloor Heating

This is considered by far the most efficient way to heat your house.

Adding a carpet to underfloor heating can mask the heat and sometimes act as an insulator.  Wooden floors allow the heat to penetrate whilst been tactile underfoot.

Engineered Oak Flooring

For details regarding this post and all our products, call us on 01423 593794

engineered oak flooring

5 – Far Better at Holding its Character

If after a few years your oak floor has been scratched or is a bit damaged due to heavy wear and tear.

A simple sand and seal will bring it back to new again. This is a lot less costly than refitting a new carpet!

6 – Always Fashionable

Let’s not forget that wood never seems to go through fashion phases – it is timeless.

Carpet and tiles seem to go through phases and date relatively quickly. Wood is a classic – an investment that will stand the test of time.

7- A Wide Choice of Sizes

Modern production methods have now meant that quality engineered oak flooring can be produced in a variety of thicknesses, widths and shades.

This makes wood floors available to all budgets.

8 – Additional Qualities

Stone and tile floors although as hygienic and easy to maintain as oak, don’t have the same warmth and feel that timber floors have.

9 – Always Adding Value

Estate agents state that houses with engineered oak flooring sell twice as easily compared to houses with other floor finishes. And there is no doubt that the value of your home does directly increase as a result of fitting a wooden floor.


The bottom line is that hardwood flooring has an array of benefits over other types of flooring.

It may cost a little more upfront, but in the long run, they are vastly more economical as outlined in the many ways above.

Ensure you spend time working out the best wood floor for you and your family as it will be with you for a long time!

engineered oak flooring

Engineered Oak Flooring

For details regarding this post and all our products, call us on 01423 593794


How An Oak Porch Can Add Character.

An Oak Porch makes your dream home have character!

It may need a focal point, an entrance to say ‘welcome’.

An oak porch does exactly that.  Designed and installed exactly how you want it.

The oak will mellow over time creating a characterful porch and become an integral part of the building; making you wonder how you ever lived without it.  The natural beauty of oak adds more than character, it adds value.

Oak Porch Considerations.

You may want to consider your homes’ style and appearance.  A quaint cottage or a large detached family home?  Stone or brick-built?  Is the roof pitch forward-facing or gable facing?

Adding a porch will definitely add character but you should think about the above considerations first.

An oak porch may not always be suitable or you may have immovable features on the property making the addition more complicated.  At Oak By Design we ask if you are able to forward a picture of your property.  This allows us to assess the oak porch’s location and point our any anomalies prior to proceeding.

Proportions and first-floor windows tend to be the main discussions on how an oak porch can be incorporated.

The picture above is from a recent case study and can be read here

Alternatively, other porch ideas and information can be found here

Before and After

oak porch york
Oak Porch Stafford

The above pictures show that adding or replacing an existing porch with a custom made one, adds character!  It elevates the approach to the house and is welcoming to all.

It also adds value and a grand entrance to guests.  Adding dwarf walls increases your protection from the elements and creates a tidy, overall impression.

For any custom made air-dried porch enquiries, please contact us today for free advice and quotations.  Thank You.

Our dedicated sister website of oakporches.co.uk will answer any questions you may have.

Tailor Made Oak Porches

For details regarding this post and all our products, call us on 01423 593794