It was only when minimalist tables, cabinets and chests of drawers appeared that Germans were reminded that solid wood furniture does not necessarily have to be made from Scandinavian conifers—and that the combination of solid wood with solid wood is a mistake. The complete solution of oak is no longer desired; the idea is rather to top off a piece of furniture with it, for instance slim, delicate, black steel legs with a massive oakwood top. This should then be made as interesting as possible though its treatment—or outright old.
It is currently fashionable to use contemporary oak planks from demolished barns to create modern furniture and to emphasize cracks, pegs and wormholes. With mallet and chisels, in careful manual labor, old wood is salvaged until a distinctive look and feel is achieved. “Look and feel” is expressly desired. The new lightness does away with the massiveness of former oak furniture and is more reminiscent of an excess-free Zen style than of traditional wood-paneled walls and rustic alpine chalets.