Fixing heat damage to timber table

I recently had a TV dinner with the kids and sat around the coffee table in the lounge room and shared a dish of nachos.

It was Nachos supreme including guacamole, sour crème and assorted toppings.

I retrieved the corked back placemats we have and laid them on the coffee table surface.

The baking dish was taken from the oven and put on top of the placemats.

I assumed this would be an adequate barrier for the heat but unfortunately I was wrong and when clearing the table an hour or so later found that the heat has scolded my table leaving the white patches you see in the picture below.

Of course this type of damage can be fixed but its a bit of work and needs to be done properly.

The job involves sanding and removing the damage, re-staining and sealing and then tops coats of clear finish.

The average price of repair is about $350 to re do the surface. The results when done properly are usually excellent and the table surface is returned to basically brand new.

I will post pictures shortly once I have had my coffee table repaired.

If you have damaged your table in a similar way get in touch we may be able to help you.

fixing heat damaged furniture


Award Winning tables

I’ve been fortunate enough to be given the honour of displaying the 2013 Timber Table of the year as awarded by the Australian Furniture Association.

Its proudly displayed in my showroom in Nunawading.

Its a credit to the young man who produced it.

Jonathon has done a wonderful job, his attention to detail and unique design makes for one of the most beautiful tables I have seen locally crafted in my 23 years experience.

We invite you in to take a look at the table for yourself, it is available for sale, contact me if you are interested.

Mark Mortelliti

GT130615 069



Google Streetview inside my Showroom

If you would like to take a look inside my showroom you can from the comfort of your PC, laptop, iPad or smartphone.

I recently had Google street view done inside my showroom.

A special camera was used using a series of about 150 photos taken on a 360 degree tripod, Google’s software takes care of the rest allowing you to literally “look around” inside my showroom.

You can navigate around using the white arrows just the way you look at your house and letterbox using street view.

Just follow this link and get a feel for the quality timber furniture I have and don’t forget we will make furniture to order perfect to suit your home.

So if you cant see what you need get in touch and we will make something specially for you.

Thanks Mark Mortelliti

Round timber dining tables

Round tables made to order

Round dining tables are hard to find in Melbourne.

I have clients every week saying “wow you have round tables I have been looking everywhere for one.”

We make round timber dining tables to order in almost any size.

This one pictured is the messmate round table with modern cross leg base. It is 1600mm in diameter and will seat 6-8 people comfortably.

We have lazy Susan turntable centres available in matching timbers to help serve the whole family with ease.

We make round tables in Messmate, Vic Ash, Redgum, Blackwood, Jarrah and other timbers on special request in a size to suit your home.

Mark Mortelliti








Custom-made Timber Vanity Unit

This week three custom made vanity units we made for our clients.

These units are messmate timber and produced to specification ready for stone benchtops to be fitted once installed into the clients homes.IMG_0476

The timber has been finished with a special 2 Pack finish to give it higher resistance to water and moisture in the bathrooms.

We have been making solid timber vanity units for 20 years now.

Custom made timber vanity unit made to specifications

Custom made timber vanity unit made to specifications


Timber Tables and Modern Chairs

I must say I am really enjoying seeing natural mediums ofdaire chair and natural edge table timber mixed up with modern chairs styles and pops of colour.

This Australian made table is Ash with a natural edge giving it really earthy feel and then complimented with the Replica Modernist chair from Dare Gallery $69 each in their Jan SALE.

Makes a great combination and will look great set up at home.





Australian made versus imported in timber furniture

One of the points to consider when purchasing timber furniture is ‘should I buy Australian made or imported?’ In this article I will conduct a comparison between buying Australiana made timber furniture and imported timber furniture.

First off when you buy Australian made timber furniture you support the local economy by keeping Australian companies in business. In turn local businesses can keep their staff employed, providing jobs for Australians. The money will also stay in Australia because the local manufacturers will buy their materials from Australian timber mills. Everyone in Australia wins by you buying Australian made timber furniture. When you buy imported furniture the local retailers still do business and employ Australians. The difference is the manufacturing is done overseas and so potential jobs for Australians are lost. Not only that, but part of the profits in the process of making end up in other countries. The good news is for consumers the price is often less expensive.

The hot topic in recent times is about climate change and so environmentally sustainable methods of manufacturing timber furniture have become an important consideration for many Australians. Australia’s Forest Management is eco-friendly and amongst the best in the world – Only 6% of Australia’s 147 million hectares of native forests is public forest potentially available for timber harvesting, only 1% of which is commercially harvested.
On writing this article China is shifting from harvesting forests to sustainably harvested timber plantations. However they also source their timber from other parts of the world which means there is no certainty that the timber furniture coming from China is sustainably harvested or not.

Australian manufacturers are known for their high standards of production across all industries. In furniture this is especially true as we have some of the best furniture craftsmen in the world. What this means is as consumers you will pay more for Australian made products, but receive superior quality for it.
Imported timber furniture, such as from China, is usually very good quality these days. And it’s less expensive too. For many people the bottom line is price and for this reason they end up buying imported timber furniture.

How many times have you gone to a furniture store and asked them if you can get an item in different sizes, to have them say there’s only one size available? Or only 2 sizes for say a TV unit? That’s because those timber furniture ranges are made overseas in places like China. While the quality might be very good you often don’t get flexibility in choosing your own size. Many local manufacturers of Australian made timber furniture offer the option of making to your particular size, colour, timber and/or finish. This flexibility more than offsets the higher cost by providing all the flexibility you need to get exactly the timber furniture you want.

The final comparison is order time frames. Most Australian manufacturers tend to be consistent with their order times so when you are told 8 weeks, it will probably be 8 weeks. Here in Australia it pays to provide reliable service and those manufacturers who do this for retailers by supplying on promised delivery times will do more business.
Generally speaking if furniture is ordered in from overseas there are more factors that can delay delivery. One of the most common delays is in shipping between countries, which can blow out the order timeframe as much as a month or more. In China the government can pull workers out of factories to build public infrastructure such as roads whenever they want, which disrupts the manufacturing of goods, including timber furniture.

So there you have it. Australian made timber furniture supports the local economy, keeps Australians in jobs, is environmentally friendly, is high quality, is flexible in size, colour and design, and is usually reliable in delivery time. On the other hand imported timber furniture supports the economies of other countries, can be environmentally friendly, is usually good quality, often less expensive, comes in limited size, colour and design options, and delivery can be delayed.

What would you choose…Australian made or imported timber furniture?

Written by
Nathan Brown
Lifestyle Furniture


Tips on Timber: Timber Joinery

Wood Joinery is merely the way in which two pieces of timber are joined together, and this also proves strength at the crucial points on construction of Furniture alone with glues used.

We will cover Wood Joinery commonly used in manufacturing solid timber furniture.

Timber Melbourne

Dovetail Joints

Dovetail Joints

Dovetail joints have been used for centuries for building drawers, Chest, Boxes and other wooden projects. This method of joinery is exceptionally strong.

Mortise & Tenon

This type of joint is made up of two parts, the mortise (female) and the tenon (male).

custom furniture melbourne

Mortise & Tenon

The tenon on the end of one piece of timber is inserted into a cut out hole, cut into the joining timber. The tenon is cut to fit the mortise hole exactly. This joint may then be glued, pinned or wedged to lock into place.


Australian solid timber furniture

Biscuit Joint

Biscuit Joint

This is where a small biscuit is used to align two pieces of timber. For instance, a butt joint then this glued.

Butt Joint

Melbourne custom furniture

Butt Joint


This method of joinery is the most basic method of joinery, but accuracy is still required. A butt join is where one piece of timber is butted against another and glued. In some situations it may also be screwed or nailed.


Furniture Melbourne

Tongue & Groove

Tongue and Groove

This is where a groove is cut all along the edge and a thin deep ridge (The tongue) on the adjoining piece of timber.

Finger Joint

Solid Timber Specialists

Finger Joint


This is created by cutting a set of complimentary rectangular cuts in two pieces of timber which are then glued together (e.g. to visualise this, simply interlock the fingers of your hands together).


Timber Furniture in Melbourne

Mitre Joint

Mitre Joint

Similar to the butt joint, but bother pieces have been cut on a 45 degree angle.

Grove Joint

Furniture Melbourne Blog

Grove Joint


This is where a slot is cut with the grain in which this enables a piece of timber to slide into this.


Mark Mortelliti

Timber Furniture custom made in Australia

Australian hardwood timbers are amongst the finest in the world, we are spoilt for choice. Stunning Redgum and Jarrah with natural red colors ranging from red wine tones to central Australian earthy red colours. Blackwood with its natural chocolate browns through to salmon pink tones.
Messmate with fantastic whirls of grain and Victorian Ash or Tasmanian oak with its consistent lineal grain patters which can be clear finished or stained to suit your personal taste.

When shopping for Timber furniture, you will already have your unique personal taste. For some, timber furniture is an emotional purchase and your senses will draw you to designs and styles which suit. Look for a reputable, specialist retailer that really knows and loves timbers. The salesperson should be able to answer all your questions about the timbers used, where the timber is sourced from, give you advice on the best timbers to use and explain the joinery and construction methods.
You should ensure you get a minimum guarantee of 5 or more years on your furniture.

The use of timber Veneers in furniture making is becoming more common. You should ask your retailer about veneers and where they are used. Natural Timber Veneers are beautiful and very efficient and economical usage of timber in furniture. High quality timber veneers are available in redgum, Blackwood, Jarrah, Victorian Ash and Tasmanian oak. In a world starting to focus more on resources, a veneer allows timber usage to go further. Timber veneers do not move & do not expand and contract like a natural timber and therefore enhance structural integrity, stability and product longevity.

Natural timber furniture is always unique; no two trees are the same which makes your furniture special and beautiful.
Quality timber furniture will last you many many years, and provide many years of enjoyment. Clear finished natural timbers will continue to mature in colour over time showing off its natural beauty.

When caring for your timber furniture avoid spray polishes which are high in silicone, look for wax based products and natural oil based products which are more gentle on your furniture’s finish. Polish and Wax should only need to be used around 4 times are year to maintain your furniture. In between keeping the surface dirt and dust free with a damp cloth is enough to keep you furniture looking great day to day.

Timber furniture actually stores carbon, the tree has taken CO2 from the atmosphere and locked it into the wood. It is only when the wood is burnt or decays that the carbon is released again. When you buy timber furniture make sure its source is from a renewable plantation and that the furniture will last many generations.

Australian timbers used in furniture

There are many species of Australian timbers available that are ideal in the manufacturing of timber furniture. Each boasts unique characteristics and whatever your choice it will never be the wrong one. It’s just a matter of taste.

Jarrah (Eucalyptus Marginata)

Jarrah features a signature smooth grain with rich deep red to red-brown tone natural
timber colouration, which is found only in this Australian Hardwood Timber, often referred to as the magnificent Australian natural resource.

Furniture made from Australian Jarrah Hardwood Timber is always of exceptional character and when placed in the hands of an Australian craftsman furniture maker the results are spectacular, timeless heirlooms of the future.

Australian Jarrah Hardwood is grown in the far south west corner of Western Australia and is limited in supply, making it one of the more expensive of Australian Hardwoods.

Australian Jarrah Hardwood Timber Density is 820kg per cubic meter, placing it amongst the highest, hardest, and most durable of all Australian Hardwood Timbers.

Redgum (Eucalyptus Camaldulensis)

Red Gum Hardwood Timber features deep, lustrous red wine hues with inter-twined grains that are characteristic of this world famous hardwood timber.
Australian Red Gum Hardwood Timber is amongst the strongest & most beautiful hardwoods in the world, a highly sought hardwood for Australian and International Furniture Manufacturers, very popular hardwood timber choice with our customers whatever age group, decor or usage requirements. It’s beautiful appearance commands attention, no need for colour stains on this one, its best left natural with a clear
finish, hand rub or natural oiling.

Australian Red Gum Hardwood Timber is very hard wearing, great for the active family with children, teenagers and lots of entertaining. The Australian Red Gum Tree is naturally resistant to termites and was used extensively by Early European Settlers. It is common to find trees well over 100 years old growing along the waterways of Victoria, primarily the Ovens, Goulburn and Murray rivers.

Australian Red Gum Hardwood Timber density is 900kg per cubic meter, making it the perfect Australian Hardwood Furniture Timber choice.

Victorian Ash (Eucalyptus Regnans)

Victorian Ash Hardwood Timber is characterised by its consistently straight grain and little or no gum veins. The natural colouring of this Australian Hardwood ranges
from pale pinks to red browns and pale straw.

Victorian Ash is also known as Mountain Ash, Alpine Ash and Tasmanian Oak. Victorian Ash Hardwood is the world’s tallest flowering plant, and right on our doorstep in abundance which makes it a popular choice for local furniture manufacturers and customers.

Victorian Ash Hardwood is grown throughout the mountain regions of Victoria, Tasmania and southern New South Wales, with an average wood density of 750kg per cubic meter, it’s a perfect timber for furniture manufacturing requirements, always resulting in a beautiful finished piece of quality furniture.

Messmate (Eucalyptus Obliqua)

Messmate Hardwood Timber has gum veins and natural characteristics not found in other hardwood timbers. The natural colour palette of brown to light-brown hues,
looks great finished in a clear hand rubbed bees wax, especially the Re-claimed Messmate Hardwood, allowing the up to 80 years of weathered ageing process, inherent timber character present itself in all it’s natural glory.

Unbelievable character and charm captured for life. New milled Messmate Hardwood Timber Furniture is often stained a darker colour to suit specific decor and architectural preferences. The variety of grain & texture make it ideal for families with active children & teenagers as the finished timber surface is more forgiving of bumps & scratches. The Australian Messmate Tree is grown widely across the south-east end of Australia, from South Australia, Southern Victoria, Tasmania & Eastern New South Wales. It’s most likely to grow in rain forests in coastal regions.

Australian Messmate Hardwood Timber Density is 830kg per cubic meter.

Blackwood (Acacia Melanoxylon)

Blackwood Hardwood Timber features a diverse, distinctive colour palette, ranging from reds and browns, orange and salmon pink, through to deep chocolate.
The Blackwood Tree is grown environmentally sustainably throughout Tasmania’s native forests and swamp areas. Australian Blackwood Hardwood Timber is highly regarded in the industry by specialist cabinet and furniture makers.
Staining is an option but Blackwood Hardwood Timber looks best finished in a clear oil, lacquer or varnish. Australian Blackwood Hardwood Timber has been used for furniture making in Tasmania & Main Land Australia since the 19th Century and continues to be a favourite choice amongst our customers.

Australian Blackwood Timber Density is 640 kg per cubic meter.

Marri (Corymbia Calophylla)

Marri Hardwood features a beautiful blend of nutmeg to honey colour tones running through a distinct display of gum veins and grain patterns that are unique to this
Australian home grown Hardwood. Its unique signature is the strong deep dark gum lines.

It’s a unique timber in real term rarely used so it stands out as something very different.

Marri Hardwood (Corymbia Calophylla), formerly known as Eucalyptus Calophylla, is native to the far south west region of Western Australia. It often grows amidst the Jarrah and Karri forests.

Marri Hardwood Timber has a durability of 850kg per cubic metre making it a favourite hardwood timber selection for craftsman furniture makers in Australia.


Written by
Nathan Brown
Lifestyle Furniture