The next generation of timber design: Abelwood Evolution

There’s no denying that natural products in our homes and workplaces bring a sense of ease and calmness into a space. A locally and  sustainably sourced natural material offers additional peace of mind when specifying for a new project fit-out or dream home renovation. The latest product from Neville Smith Forest Products, Abelwood Evolution Lining, offers both- beautiful timber lining profiles that are also sustainably sourced from PEFC certified Tasmanian Oak.

We recently caught up with Tasmanian interior designer and advocate for the use of local and natural materials, Lydia Maskiell from Lydia Maskiell Interiors to get her take on the use of timber in projects and how Abelwood Evolution Lining could be used to create texture, interest, and warmth in the built environment.

Based in Launceston, Tasmania, Lydia Maskiell Interiors is a bespoke Interior Design and Styling studio specialising in residential spaces.

With an attention to materiality, proportion, spatial flow and the interplay of colour and light within interior spaces, these elements of design are the hallmark of their portfolio. With a strong emphasis and eye for detailing, her style is adaptable yet consistent focusing on creating quality, beautiful residential and commercial spaces.

Having been featured in magazines such as Home Beautiful, Adore Magazine, Home Design, Inside Out, Better Homes & Gardens, House & Garden magazine with House & Gardens Top 50 Rooms in Australia in both 2018 and 2019, Lydia was also named Tasmanian Designer of the Year at the KBDI Interior Design Awards in 2019, 2020, 2021 for both Bathroom Designer of the Year & Kitchen Designer of the Year.

What inspires your designs?

We always take a fresh approach to any design and are inspired by the sense of place that we can create for our clients and what that sense of place means for them.


When you’re working with a client designing their dream space, does the use of local materials add to the story?

Absolutely! Clients are becoming more and more aware of where their products are coming from and whether they have been sustainably sourced. Sustainability is a huge influence in all our designs. That is why Abelwood’s new  Evolution lining is such an easy product to specify as it’s crafted from only sustainably sourced and PEFC certified Tasmanian Oak from Tasmania.


What does the use of timber add to a space?

Warmth and a sense of connection to our outdoor environment.


What do you think separates Tasmanian design vs. what’s being done in other parts of Australia?

In Tasmania, we tend to drum to our own beat here which has seen design take on a connected, adaptable and grounded approach with our environment and pace of life at the forefront.

Many of the buildings in the cities were constructed in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries which have been well preserved and transitioned for modern living. We have a big emphasis on the history of our buildings and think creatively as to how we can work with them.

Tasmania has seen significant growth in the past few years which the architecture and interior spaces evolving to the new demands. As our resources are more limited in Tasmania, we do strive to source locally which also provides more opportunity to innovate and push the design envelope.

How does the use of a timber lining like Ablewood Evolution differ from using timber in a traditional sense, ie, timber floorboards, cabinets, furniture etc.

Abelwood’s Evolution Lining gives an opportunity to create depth, warmth and variation to your wall space which gives a more dramatic effect. It can be difficult to achieve natural warmth through your wall space, even as a solid timber wall can be somewhat overpowering and heavy whereas Abelwood’s new Evolution Lining softens the space.


Where could Ablewood Evolution products be used in a home renovation? In a commercial setting?

Abelwood’s new Evolution Lining is a highly versatile product. Its unique forms can be used to create an angular, soft or geometric finish to suit both residential and commercial spaces. The timber is perfect in materiality to add warmth to any space, especially as a feature wall.


What kinds of trends do you see with timber leading us through 2022 and into next year?

Timber is such a timeless material and still one of the most preferred materials in an interior space. I think we’ll see timber forms continue to evolve and take shape, perhaps through more light-weight timbers that allow for more creative timber ceiling designs.

About Abelwood Evolution Lining

Handcrafted from the finest hardwood regrowth Tasmanian Oak, Abelwood Evolution Lining adds texture and warmth to any space, with a tactile natural appeal that offers versatility for a range of interior design applications including walls, ceilings, and cabinetry.

Available in a range of innovative profiles from soft curves to angular & geometric, the Prime Grade features of the lining offer a clear and consistent grain, with a mild mix of natural features. Each lining profile is light in colour, varying from straw to reddish brown with intermediate shades of cream to pink and offers excellent staining properties, allowing easy matching with other timbers, finishes and furnishings and are available in 80mm widths and a wide range of set lengths.


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