Solid wood furniture is one of the best investments you can make in your home décor. Solid wood may be a bit more expensive than other materials but most buyers would agree that it is well worth the cost. As a furniture shopper you will be confronted with terminology you may not completely understand; terms like veneer, solid wood product, solid wood, laminate and particle or fiber board are all important in the search for new furniture. Understanding what these various terms mean will help you find the best solid wood furniture available.
Solid wood is exactly what the names implies, solid wood milled from a tree. Solid wood furniture is composed of only natural wood; it contains no processed wo
roughout the years; manufactured wood products cannot be refinished normally. High quality workmanship is reflected in details; look for matching grain and coloration for the most beautiful appearance. Small wood scraps pieced together are indicative of less than quality workmanship.
Be wary of the phrase “solid wood products” as it does not mean solid wood though it does seem to imply it. However, this term actually is describing MDF or particle board.
Particle board and fiber board are engineered wood products. This type of wood product is not susceptible to warping and therefore it is often used as a base for veneers. Veneer woods are made by fusing a thin layer of solid wood to particle board. The result is a material with the attractive look of solid wood at a fraction of the cost. Veneers are not as durable as solid wood.
Veneers comprised of a thin layer of costly, beautiful wood fused to a substrate made from less expensive types of solid wood. This is called “wood veneer over solid wood”; it is an environmentally friendly option since it reduces the demand on our slower growing hardwood forests. When looking at veneered furniture look for tight fusing, matching grain and good color matches. Veneer furniture is judged by its craftsmanship.
Laminates may look like real wood but they are generally composed of a durable surface material applied to a stable substrate material like particle board. Typically, laminates are inexpensive and not prone to surviving long, hard wear.
The most durable, strongest of all wood furniture choices is solid hardwood. When cared for properly solid woods such as maple, cherry and oak can last literally for centuries. One of the best indicators of high quality craftsmanship is the finish. Take your hands and gently feel the piece; look for a smooth surface with no rough areas.
Shoppers searching for solid wood pieces will want to look for the most beautiful wood with a clear finish that allows the wood’s beauty to shine through. Don’t be fooled by terminology, read labels and ask questions to find the best solid wood furniture you can afford.
Big Drawers Furniture offers the best, custom-made wood furniture for your home. Contact us for a free estimate.