Different Woods used in Furniture
Wood is the most versatile, renewable and sustainable resource on the planet. For this reason, wood is also the most commonly used material in the creation of furniture. As wood is an organic material and can be native to specific regions, you may find that different woods are used for furniture in different countries. In the same vein, different woods have different values for many furniture dealers. For example, the wood in antique furniture sold at somewhere like the antique world is much more valuable than the wood products sold at other furniture stores.
Nowadays, transportation costs are at an all-time low – different woods are imported and exported at a much higher rate, providing more options for furniture makers, so if you wanted to find antique furniture, you might be interested in somewhere like Vecchio e Bello to find more antiques. New, man-made materials have also added to the variety of options available.
Different Woods used in Furniture
Cherry Woods used in Furniture
a close-grained hardwood that resists warping and shrinking well. The native range of the wild cherry extends through most of Europe, western Asia and parts of northern Africa. Cherry wood reddens when exposed to sunlight. It ages well and extensively used in cabinet making, boat trim, novelties, and solid furniture handles.
Fir Woods used in Furniture
Fir is a fast-growing softwood that is uniformly textured and has a very low resistance to rotting and decay. It is easy to work and finishes well. Fir used for making furniture, doors, picture frames; window frames, and general millwork and as interior trim. It is also a main component of plywood.
a hardwood native to Britain that is a pale yellow color, which gradually darkens over time. has excellent carving properties and it is especially favored for delicate work by master woodcarvers. Seasoned lime a very stable and soft enough to be carved and yet firm; enough to hold a precisely cut surface well. Lime also stains well, has good bending properties and often used for making furniture.
Mahogany a finely grained hardwood that is a reddish-brown color. It is extremely durable and resists swelling, shrinking, warping and twisting. The mahogany used extensively for high quality, expensive furniture; such as wooden cabinets and veneered tables and dressers. also used in the construction of boats due to its high resistance to swelling and warping caused by water.
Maple is a fine-textured hardwood native to Asia with immense strength and hardness. With moderate shrinkage, maple machines well and best used in flooring; fine furniture and hard-wearing surfaces such as bowling alley lanes. Maple a very light-colored wood and sometimes even bleached before finishing making it even whiter.
Oak is a hardwood, light in color, which has good pliable qualities despite its durable nature. The wood stains and finishes well and resists moisture absorption. Oak great for furniture; for which commonly used, due to its natural aesthetic qualities as well as its strength. Also used for boat framing, wooden decks, and flooring.
Pine is a fast-growing softwood native to Scandinavia. It has a uniform texture and is very easy to work with. finishes well and resists shrinkage, swelling and warping despite having a wide grain. A widely used in the construction of timber frame houses, paneling, mass-produced furniture; wood pallets, and numerous other items. one of the most widely used timbers in the world and a so fast-growing that ‘farmed’ in countries all over the world.
Rosewood is a tight-grained hardwood with a dark reddish-brown color. It is hard to work with and requires a lot of polishing to achieve a good finish. commonly used for making musical instruments such as pianos, as well as tool handles, sculptures, veneers and furniture. It has also had a uniquely pleasant fragrance which sets it apart from most other woods.
Spruce is a relatively strong softwood native to Scandinavia that finishes well but has a low resistance to rotting and decay. It possesses moderate shrinkage and is light in color and weight. It is a good option for making masts and spars for ships, aircraft, crates, boxes, general millwork and ladders due to its favorable strength to weight ratio.
Teak is a renowned hardwood that is very moisture resistant. It resists warping, cracking and decay and used in a wide variety of ways; that make use of its extreme strength and hardwearing qualities; these include furniture, paneling, window frames, church doors, and flooring. It is also sometimes used as a construction timber for its load-bearing capabilities, for example, as a crossbeam.
Walnut is a hard word that is fine in texture, dark in color and strong yet easy to work. It resists shrinking and warping and can take numerous types of finishes as it takes stains and glazes very well. It is used mainly for making solid and veneered furniture, cabinets, wall paneling and decorative novelty trinkets. The English walnut actually originated in Persia, and the Black walnut is native to the United States.
Cedar is a reddish softwood native to Lebanon, western Syria and south-central Turkey where it is traditionally used in the making of Venetian Blinds. It has a distinctive sweet scent that is why it is extensively used in chest making, closet lining and household novelties. It is very easy to work with, uniform in texture and is resistant to decay leading to its use as an outdoor house shingle.
Chipboard is an artificial wood made like MDF but from actual wood chips, hence the name. widely used for the structural casing of kitchen furniture and cabinets; which then covered with a laminate or wood veneer. also widely used for low-cost subflooring. It is only useful in sheet form and cannot be easily used or worked in any other format.
Medium Density Fiber Board (MDF)
an artificial wood made from powdered wood bonded with glue and compressed; to form sheets usually 2400mm x 1200mm in size. A quite soft, pliable and very easy to work with; cuts, sands, and finishes very easily. used widely for interior projects especially for cupboards and shelving. Due to its nature; it is highly recommended to wear a face mask when sanding MDF as the particles tiny and easily inhaled
Glass in its ordinary form will break under pressure into sharp shards and is therefore not suitable for use in furniture. Toughened glass formed from a prepared sheet of ordinary glass; which has been heated and then rapidly cooled with cold air; this heating and rapid cooling process results in outer surfaces contracting and solidifying before the interior; thereby inducing permanent compressive stresses into the surfaces of the glass. This type of glass suitable for use in furniture manufacture and can even be bent and curved.
Plastic is an artificial material that was created in 1862 in London. The material originally called Parkesine; an organic material derived from cellulose that once heated could be molded and retained its shape when cooled. It has since been developed greatly with numerous variations but its original properties remain most valuable. The ability to mold plastic into any form has made it a very popular material for mass-produced furniture. But also for modern furniture where any shape is possible.
Steel, especially tubular steel, became popular as a furniture-making material after the popularity of the Wassily Chair, also known as the Model B3 chair, which was designed by Marcel Breuer in 1925-1926. This modern designed displayed the potential use of tubular steel as a structural as well as an aesthetic material; that gave added options to furniture designers in terms of what unusual support systems were now possible.
Redwood is native to a narrow strip of land along the lower west coast of America. It is light but relatively durable; a softwood that is easy to work; has a good natural resistance to rotting and decay and therefore commonly used for making outdoor furniture, fencing, and house paneling. Named for its color, a deep pink, red hue through the wide grain.
An artificial wood invented during the Second World War; primarily used to build boats and landing craft for the military. made from numerous thin laminates of wood glued together. Each layer is at the right angle to the grain of the other to give it great strength. While also allowing it to remain quite pliable. The thinner the sheet, the more pliable it will be. Used widely in the building industry as a subflooring material or as a structural casing between walls.
a lightweight softwood that is native to the North American continent but also grown in Europe. A machine cuts well due to the wide grain and rarity of knots; Uniformly textured and has a low resistance to decay. Mainly used as a construction timber for planks, door panels, and subflooring and transportation crates.