Coffee Table Styles

Coffee tables are the workhorses in our living rooms. They’re great parking spaces for coffee mugs, mobile phones, and even feet. They’re a handy surface for your little ones to play on. They can play host to magazines and books. They can even keep your living room clutter-free while looking stylish doing so. Given all that, it’s not surprising that when you come to buy a new one, you have many different coffee table styles to choose from.

So what should you consider before buying a new coffee table?

Coffee Table Styles from A World of Oak A Touch of Pine Banbury and Bicester


Because there are oodles of coffee table styles, knowing what you want yours for is a must. If hiding clutter is a concern, then a coffee table with storage  might be useful. Coffee tables with shelves are handy if you want to keep magazines and books tidy. Coffee tables with drawers or storage baskets can keep irregular-sized clutter at bay.

If you want useful little display surfaces dotted around the room, then a nest of tables may be the answer. And if you want a coffee table that can double as a children’s workspace, then  you’ll want a coffee table with a smooth surface, or there’ll be tears at colouring time!


Sheesham Rosewood Coffee Tables from a World of Oak A Touch of PineSize

Size is another important consideration – and one reason coffee tables are sometimes returned to the store and exchanged for one more suitable.  It’s easy to get wrong.

Mark out your chosen space so you can see how the table fits with the rest of the room and be sure to allow a sufficient gap all around your coffee table, so people can sit comfortably. There’s nothing worse than barking your shin every time you reach for your teacup.


Choosing the style, colour scheme and finish is the fun part of coffee table buying. Because despite everything we want our coffee tables to do, we want them to look stylish while they do it.  Fortunately, there are literally scores of coffee table styles, so the chances that you’ll find something that’s perfect for your home are very high.

In our store you can find coffee table styles from sleek and contemporary, to traditional and even exotic. They come in pine or oak, rosewood or mango, oiled, waxed or polished, and even painted in a range of delectable shades.

All you have to do is choose the right style for your home! 🙂

BespOak Hereford Slate Oak and Blue Black Coffee Table | A World of Oak A Touch of PIne Banbury and Bicester

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New in Store: our new Jali Furniture Collection!

Sheesham Rosewood Coffee Tables from a World of Oak A Touch of PineBrand new in store this autumn, our beautiful Jali furniture collection will find its fans amongst those of us who love unusual, innovative storage solutions and furniture that’s just not like everybody else’s.

Rosewood is a dense material that is prized for its beautiful colours. Shades stretch from pale pink to deep burgundy and brown and show rich veining.

Rosewoods tend to be strong and heavy, polish beautifully, and can be used to produce musical instruments – such as guitar fret boards and recorders – all kinds of furniture, and even luxury flooring.  Our Jali furniture pieces are made from solid Sheesham Indian Rosewood and finished with metalwork doors and wrought iron handles.

Sheesham Rosewood Circular Drawer Sets from A World of Oak A Touch of Pine Banbury and BicesterRight now, we offer coffee tables in a range of sizes, beautiful trunks and storage boxes, and unusual circular drawers sets.

Storage doesn’t come more stylish than this.

From trunks you’ll have to fight your teenagers for to drawer columns that fit into corners or hallways without absorbing too much floor space, this is a furniture collection for enthusiasts.

Rosewood furniture is different from the oak and pine furniture we’ve all grown up with and are used to seeing. It adds a touch of something special to a room, an eclectic vibe that fits with many current colour schemes. If you’re an aficionado of the global nomad trend, then you’ll see right away how well our rosewood furniture fits with woven blankets, knitted cushions and innovative metal accessories.

And if you’ve never considered adding a touch of the orient to you home? Check out our Jali collection anyway. You may find that you’re so bowled over by its looks and style that you’ll take a piece home anyway.


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New in Store – our brand-new Mango Furniture Collection!

This is one of the most exciting times of the year for us. Not because school has started again, but because it’s the time when our new furniture collections are beginning to arrive and we have the chance to shout about what’s new in store. It’s a bit like Christmas come early and, of course, we love to share the good news with you. So what can you expect to see in our stores over the next few weeks?

Our new Mango Collection

This furniture, made from solid mango wood, comes in two distinct styles.

  • A very modern cubic style in a light natural finish that lets the wood grain shine through. Pieces in this style have a unique, very flexible design that will add a touch of flair to your living and dining rooms!
  • A chunky, rustic style with a slightly distressed finish and iron-forged cushion knob handles that offers furniture in a more traditional design. This style offers furniture for all rooms in your home, and the bedroom furniture has proven especially popular since we took delivery.

The first items arrived in the last couple of weeks and have proven very popular with customers who visited the store since then. If you like to furnish your home with pieces that are solidly made, but look just that little bit out of the ordinary, then we recommend you check out our Mango furniture collection, which is new in store now!


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5 Signs That You Need A New Mattress

A well-build oak or pine bedstead can last you well over a dozen years. What doesn’t last quite as long is your mattress. A good mattress compresses to cradle and support you while you sleep and then relaxes and bounces back during the day. But over time, even the best mattress loses its springiness and begins to sag. That’s when it’s time for a new mattress, since a worn out one is not helping you get a good night’s rest.

Turning and flipping your mattress regularly will prolong its life, as will using a mattress topper, but even with all this help there comes a time when you need a new mattress.

How do you know when that time is? Here are five signs to look out for.

5 Signs You May Need a New Mattress | A World of Oak A Touch of Pine Banbury and Bicester

Your mattress is visibly sagging

This one is easy to spot whether you’re using a flat sheet or a fitted one. If there are dents and dips in your freshly made up mattress, it may be time to think of a new one, since the core of your mattress  clearly isn’t recovering its shape back to where it should be. If you lie down and feel as if you’re sliding into a form, or settling into a hammock… then you’ll know you’re lying on a tired mattress.

You wake up tired

One problem with sleeping on a mattress that’s past its best is that you really won’t get a good night’s sleep. You’ll twist and turn trying to get comfortable, whether you’re aware of it or not. And you wake up as if you’ve been fighting all night… which you have, in a manner of speaking. Not getting a good night’s rest can seriously affect your work and home life as well as your emotional wellbeing, so it’s important to take note.

You wake up with aches and pains

Your mattress is meant to support your body while you rest. But if your mattress is worn, your body may not get the support it needs. If you wake up with an aching neck and sore hips, if you struggle to straighten your back or your knees… and if all these aches and pains improve during the day, only to recur the next morning – then your mattress is to blame.

You wake up with a blocked nose or sore throat

Like waking up with aches and pains and blaming it on your activities of the day before, you may wake up with a blocked nose or sore throat and simple blame it on hayfever, pollen, or general pollution. But, you know, it might actually be your mattress that’s to blame.

If allergies seem worse first thing in the morning, or overnight, then it may be time for a new mattress. However careful you are with washing mattress covers and bedding, vacuuming your mattress, and choosing mattresses made from materials like latex or memory foam which are resistant to dust mites – they’ll move in eventually and they’ll make you suffer.

​​​​​​​You’ve had your mattress for more than seven years

Most of us can’t remember how long we’ve had our current mattress – except for the smart cookies who write the delivery date on the mattress label! If you check how long you’ve had yours, you might be surprised. It’s recommended that you replace your mattress roughly every seven years, but even that’s not a hard and fast rule. If you’ve changed your weight a lot (either up or down!) in the last few years, your mattress may be struggling to support your body properly. A cheaper mattress might not be as resilient as a more expensive one. Most of all, though, mattress technology has moved on more advanced materials are now available. This is especially true for memory foam, which was an amazing novelty a few years back. Early memory foam layers were often far too thin and apt to wear out quickly, while the rest of the mattress was still perfectly fine.

Bed shopping is fun – and we’ll be glad to help you out. But don’t forget shopping for a new mattress at intervals. It’s ever so important for a good night’s sleep. And we have a range of good quality mattresses in store, so if you want to try one out… just ask!

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A Little Help with your Back to School Preparations

Summer holidays always seem to pass so quickly. One day you wonder what to pack for the perfect picnic and then, before you know it, it’s time to think about going back to school. You’re ironing school uniforms, labelling exercise books, socks and PE gear, and sorting through reading projects.

For many of us, September is a month for change, and not just because the lazy summer days are coming to an end and autumn’s on the way. Going back to school is the time to make a fresh start, whether your youngest is starting secondary school, your eldest is heading off to uni, or you’re planning to take a few evening courses yourself.

One thing many customers look for when they visit our stores at the end of summer is furniture suitable for a study or home office. So today, we thought we give you a little run-down on how we can help make the back to school transition much more seamless.


Hidden Office from our Mobel Oak collectionWhether you’re using a paper pad and pencil, an ipad, or a laptop, you can work on any flat surface.

So why should you look at buying a proper desk? Two reasons.

One, a desk tends to have more than just a surface to write on. Even our slim-line ipad desk has drawers where you can store a mouse, cables, chargers, and USB sticks, and our larger desks have drawers and well-designed spaces that help keep your office neat, organised, and clutter free.

The second reason for choosing a desk is psychological. Having a dedicated workspace will get you much faster into a productive mindset than sitting in your dining or living room. Just as stepping away from your desk will help you relax once the work is done.

Bookcases and Filing Cabinets

A little help for you back to school preparations | A World of Oak A Touch of Pine Banbury and BicesterNo workspace is complete without storage and bookcases and filing cabinets are high on most people’s list.

We stock bookcases and filing cabinets in a variety of sizes, so bring us your measurements and we’re bound to be able to help.

And while you’re in the store, don’t forget to check out our clearance area for bargains. We often have ex-display pieces, end-of-line items, or samples that will work very well if you’re furnishing your first dedicated workspace.


Offices need storage, but you want them to be enticing too. And that’s easily achieved with accessories that fit around your personality.

Check out our selection of baskets, which are an excellent compromise between style and storage facility. Make yourself smile with a quirky vintage sign. Or even cheer up your chosen work area with a colourful storage pouffe or a cosy rug.

Whatever you need in your new study or home office, we can help you make the back to school transition painless. Just ask…

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Why decorate with vintage signs?

Why decorate with vintage signs? A World of Oak A Touch of Pine Banbury and BicesterShabby chic, farmhouse, and vintage designs have been hot trends for quite a few years now, and their popularity shows no sign of waning. Along with functional, but distressed-looking furniture, wall art like clocks, old-style advertising and vintage signs are being sought out and picked up by many of us. It’s a trend that some people get immediately, while others need to work to make sense of it.

And while there are plenty of bric-a-brac shops offering all manner of well-aged items and distressed paint jobs now cover dining chairs as easily as bedside tables and wardrobes, there’s always been a special place in people’s minds for advertising posters, signs, and other vintage accessories.

So why would you hang an old tin sign advertising baked beans on your kitchen wall or declare yourself a Gin Palace to everyone who steps through your front door? It might make sense if you’re a local pub or coffee shop, but in your home?

The reason why people decorate with vintage signs are as individual as the signs themselves.

Maybe the sign reminds you of a favourite food, or a favourite place. Maybe it’s the sign for a street you know well, or celebrates a sports team you support. Maybe it makes you smile. Or maybe you always wanted a kitchen clock that proclaimed it ‘wine time’ or extolled the virtue of cupcakes.

Vintage signs and old-style clocks add a touch of quirkiness to a kitchen, dining  room, or hallway… spaces that are often more functional than stylish. They’re a declaration of things you enjoy, and they have just as much meaning as that jar of seashells you’ve brought back from your seaside holiday or the incense sticks on the sidetable.

Old-style clocks aren’t just decorative, either. They tell the time as well as remind us of times gone by whether you like the austere, angular Art Deco style or a slightly more whimsical farmhouse design.

Accessories for a Vintage Kitchen | Calendar Clock

The other nice thing about vintage signs is that they’re instant conversation pieces. They bring a room to life and pull a design together and – in many cases – you only need a single piece in a room to give it that final, finished look.

You can, of course, trail antique shops, flea markets or car boot sales to find the vintage signs you’d like to display in your home. Or, if the actual age of the sign doesn’t matter as much as the design itself and the look it gives to your home, and you’re happy to display a replica… then why not visit one of our stores. We have an interesting selection of clocks, vintage signs and decorative signs that will bring a real smile to your face…

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Add a Touch of Blue

How do you give a much-used room a facelift or change the vibe when you don’t feel in the mood to decorate? Right now, interior designers will tell you to add a touch of blue.

Bright blues or acqua teamed with white can add an instant vibe of breezy seaside to a room. But it’s the deeper blues, and most especially indigo, that are currently all the rage. Why? Because deep blue brings calm, peace, and a sense of relaxation – something that offsets our busy lives.

Add a Touch of Blue | A World of Oak A Touch of Pine

Adding blue is very much a trend where less is more. There’s no need to reach for a paintbrush or go shopping for new carpets. Indigo shades add a tranquil feel when used sparingly, so they’re a fabulous colour for accessories.

Blue bedding and a blue arm chair, or even a stylish alarm clock can quieten a corner of your bedroom.

A few new mugs and plates bring that same quiet feeling into your kitchen or, teamed with place mats, a tablecloth, or a decorative bowl or two, into your dining room.

A blue rug or a deep blue throw on your favourite chair will give your mind a moment’s rest. And if you feel seriously in need of Zen in your life, then why not look for a large canvas print to display in your hallway or living room?

Add a touch of blue  | A World of Oak A Touch of Pine Banbury and Bicester

If you explore the shops right now, you’ll find more than just a touch of blue. Cushions, throws, lampshades, jars, rugs, vases, even barstools and coffeetables are available in the coveted hue. It’s clear that, at the end of the school holidays and still caught up in a long hot summer, this trend had really caught the imagination.

The choice of deep blue furnishings and accessories is so extensive that adding a touch of blue to your home is a joy for everyone. If you’re visiting our Banbury or Bicester store this weekend, then why not check out our blue fabric dining chairs, our canvas prints or our selection of rugs. You may find one that will add just that missing touch of blue to your home along with a touch of Zen.

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Emergency Chairs? Right This Way!

Emergency KittensWe’ve all heard of emergency kittens, the patented internet remedy for anyone who needs cheering up. There are loads of emergency kitten pics out there, and very nice they are, too, but what are emergency chairs?

For most people, emergency chairs are plastic, folding, or stackable chairs you pull up to the dinner table when you have more guests than you have dining room chairs.
It’s estimated that, in Britain, we use over 4 million emergency chairs on Christmas day… and most of them are not at all comfortable or even the right height!

Emergency chairs can be as basic as you want them to be, but we think plastic garden chairs should stay in the garden, while you offer your guests stylish, comfortable chairs that will place them at the right height at the dining table and let them enjoy their Christmas or celebration dinner in peace.

For us, emergency chairs aren’t just for Christmas. Neither are they chairs you only need for a few hours each time there’s a large family celebration. Emergency chairs can be placed strategically around your home wherever you think they might be useful. And what could be more useful than a place to sit. A comfy seat next to a bookcase filled with old favourites to aid relaxed browsing. A stylish chair on a landing, or a sturdy chair in a corner of the hall to have somewhere to sit to don and remove your shoes.

There’s usually a huge rush in the last few weeks before Christmas of people going out to buy extra chairs as if there’s not enough to do already with planning the festivities, cooking, freezing, and getting all the presents sorted.

But you don’t need to wait that long.

Neither do you need to settle for uncomfortable plastic chairs or stand in line for the fold-up version.

Instead, you can visit our Bicester store right now and browse our huge selection of single chairs.

We have solid wood chairs in a range of designs, chairs with leather-padded seats, and fabric covered chairs in a variety of colours, styles, and fabrics.

And right now, all our emergency chairs can be had for £19 a piece.

So why not get a gorgeous comfortable chair to cheer up a corner of your home and double as a much-appreciated emergency chair come the next big family dinner? All without drama or the need for emergency kittens to cheer you up.

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The Magic of Baskets: Ideas for Using Baskets Around Your Home

As a furniture retailer, we’re admittedly dotty about storage. But even if we weren’t, we’d love using baskets. Mostly because they’re versatile, they look smart, and they fit simply everywhere. There’s a basket for every room of your home, and a basket for every storage dilemma you will ever come across. That’s because baskets are one of the first kinds of storage humans invented and they’ve stayed with us ever since. So, baskets have really seen it all and probably stored it all, too.

If you abhor clutter you don’t need to get rid of all your favourite knickknacks. All you need is a stack of baskets and most of your clutter problems will be stowed neatly away. Baskets are the ultimate make-order-from-chaos tool areound the home. And if the only basket you’ve used so far is the wheeled supermarket variety, then follow us as we take you on a tour of how and where baskets may come in handy around your home…

Whether you need a smart way to store toys, the larger kitchen utensils, barbecue equipment, lunch boxes and sandwich wrappers, or even magazines… baskets are your friend. If you want to be extra tidy, they can live on a shelf in your kitchen cupboard and welcome you with serene orderliness when you open the door.

Bathrooms are notorious for collecting clutter. Bottles of shampoo and conditioner, body wash and bath foam, moisturiser and makeup, not to mention stacks of hair accessories. Sort all the mess into a handful of baskets, though, and your bathroom will look like something out of a spa brochure. You could even allocate each member of your family their very own basket of goodies…

Another prime clutter collecting space is, of course, the bedside table. Many of us bring our workday to bed with us, along with books we want to read, jewellery we need to store, calendars and notebooks to update, and electronics to charge and use. Add a light, a glass of water and your bedside table will not be restful Zen space. Relocate all the bits and bobs into a smart basket, and your bedroom will look as if you’ve spent hours tidying.

One area where many might be familiar with using baskets is … the laundry basket. These baskets can swallow A LOT of clutter. Which means they come in handy for other things besides laundry. Like toys, for example. Or shoes. Or even paperwork.

Ideas for Using Baskets: Basket Storage

Cats and dogs love baskets, too, which is why you’ll find many people using baskets as cat and dog beds.

We stock sideboards that offer baskets alongside the traditional drawers and cupboard space, ideal for table linen and napkins.

Baskets, neatly placed into shelving units, make great room dividers. They fit under coffeetables to store newspapers or knitting or computer games. A small basket could be the home for all the family’s remote controls.

And yes, we could go on for a while longer… but we’re sure we’ve convinced you that using baskets around your home is a real no-brainer. And while baskets may be one of the oldest types of storage around, they also fit in neatly with our busy, detail-laden lifestyles. And there’s really no higher praise than that…

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Space-saving Furniture? Step right this way!

Step into your very first apartment or house and you’re bound to marvel at how much space you have. Add some furniture and all your belongings, and a couple of years down the road it doesn’t seem like that at all. Suddenly, you live in a shoe box and wish you had more space. That’s where we come in, because space-saving furniture isn’t a new thing.

Just as we stock furniture ranges that are designed for big old houses with huge rooms and can seat a whole tribe for lunch without breaking a sweat, we also offer space-saving furniture that’s been designed with smaller apartments and tiny cottages in mind.

Space-saving furniture isn’t all about footprint either. Clever use of space and functionality are just as important. Here are a few of our favourites:

Extendable Dining Tables

Space-saving furniture: Extendable Dining Tables from A World of Oak A Touch of Pine Banbury and BicesterYour dining table. Center of your dining room or kitchen. It sure takes up a lot of room, but… you have to have somewhere to eat, right? And you need one that’s big enough to seat your family and your parents and siblings, right?

This typical new-home-owner dilemma can be solved with an extendable dining table, which is happy with a smaller corner on a normal day, but can accommodate family and guests on feast days and holidays.

Extending dining tables aren’t all one size either, whether folded or extended, so you can choose the one that will give you the best functionality for the available space.

Corner Furniture

Space-saving furniture: Vancouver Oak Corner Display CabinetCorners aren’t precisely a waste, but in many homes they’re certainly underused. Taking a look at corner furniture may give you a few ideas for freeing up space in your living room or hallway.

A tall corner storage cabinet can banish unsightly shoe clutter from your hallway. Corners are great spaces for a coat rack, especially when your hallway is narrow.

In your living room, corners can host TV or Hifi units safely out of the way of the main traffic zones. And even your home office, often the smallest room in the house, can benefit from a space-saving corner desk.

Underbed Storage

Space-saving Furniture: Avon underbed storage, ideal for small bedrooms | A World of Oak A Touch of Pine Banbury and Bicester

Nobody likes a cluttered bedroom, but not everyone has that perfectly airy, calm Zen space to look forward to at the end of a long day. It’s more often the case of “how can I fit another chest of drawers to store…”

If this is a dilemma you recognise, then maybe it’s time to investigate underbed storage options. Build in drawers like the ones shown, or even flat storage boxes pushed under a standard bed can take bulky items like winter clothes, spare quilts and extra bedding to leave your bedroom looking much less cluttered and much more Zen without having to invest in yet another chest of drawers.

Storage Seating

Hallway storage ideas | A World of Oak A Touch of Pine Banbury and BicesterIts very nature makes multi-function furniture a space saver. The combination most often found is seating combined with storage. Storage benches are eternal favourites whether in the hallway or the kitchen.

Ottomans and sofas with built-in underseat storage are equally well-liked and often used, as are blanket boxes.

And even storage pouffes and similar kinds of casual seating are often chosen because they’re not just comfortable to lounge on, but can pack away their weight in clutter.

So, if you feel your home is spacially challenged take a fresh look at your furniture and make sure you really make the best use of its space-saving potential. Or come talk to us. We’d be delighted to help!

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