Stripped wood makes a comeback

14 Nov

{Amy Barkow via D*S / unknown via Pinterest}

When I was growing up in the late 1980s, stripped pine furniture was all the rage. I remember sitting in the car with my brother and giggling at name of  ‘Strip ‘n’ Dip’ where my parents regularly dropped off beautiful Victorian trunks and doors that previous owners had caked with gloss. The smell of Briwax still takes me right back to that first house I grew up in – I love it!

{via The Gifts of Life}

A few years later the ’90s arrived. Changing Rooms hit our screens, the term ‘shabby chic’ was coined and painted furniture (painted everything) was firmly back in. Mum went to a paint effects evening class and soon every available surface in our house was rag rolled, stippled and scumble glazed to within an inch of its life. And that was when I fell in love with decorating.

{Lisa Warninger}

Now, it seems we’ve come full circle and rustic bare wood in back in fashion once again. I’m not sure if it’s my changing tastes, nostalgia or something to do with the season, but I’m loving the warmth, texture and unpretentious beauty of stripped wood furniture and accessories. The more mismatched and battered the better.


When I moved into my flat a couple of years I went for a lot of sleek white gloss furniture combined with soft grey for the walls and accessories. I still love grey, but in my next house I think I’ll be embracing natural materials a lot more. Partly because I hope my next move will be out of London and into the countryside so a more rustic look is generally a better a fit, but also because I think my tastes have softened too.

{via Vineet Kaur}

Have you noticed your tastes shifting away from painted furniture recently? How you think you’ll decorate your next home differently?


6 Responses to “Stripped wood makes a comeback”

  1. heather November 19, 2012 at 11:25 #

    this post just made me feel a whole lot better about my recently stripped pine floor boards, they’re full of woodworn and perhaps a little bit too orange, but still pleased we didn’t paint them.

  2. Chris November 16, 2012 at 17:15 #

    Liking the natural-looking edge on the oak (?) and metal table, might give that a go! You can go modern with the stripped wood thing, too – have noticed a bit of a trend recently for leaving plywood or laminated veneer lumber exposed as wall cladding

    • Decorator's Notebook November 16, 2012 at 18:39 #

      Absolutely. Have seen some great, super contemporary homes recently making use of bare plywood and concrete. Not for me but very striking architecturally.

  3. Ramona Boeker November 14, 2012 at 13:31 #

    My current project has the floor stripped the the cabinets stripped down my contractor thinks I’m a little crazy but hey it’s growing on him.


  1. Paint effects: they’re back and this time they’re on a roll! « Decorator's Notebook blog - February 20, 2013

    […] effect generation and my Mum’s passion for rag rolling and scumble glazing was what sparked my passion for interiors in the first place. So when photographer Clare Bosanquet dropped me an email about her traditional […]

  2. House tour: cosy Welsh farmhouse « Decorator's Notebook blog - November 23, 2012

    […] landscape. The beamed ceilings and slate flagstone floors act as a rustic backdrop for traditional wood furniture, including the much-loved Welsh dresser and heavy dark stained grain chest, which Kathleen […]

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