Whether it’s for your dining, bedroom, or living room, there’s just something appealing about wood furniture. Maybe it’s the memory of your grandmother’s chair or the natural charactistics of the grain, wood can be sentimental and warm.
But did you know not all woods are created equal? There are definite advantages and disadvantages to solid wood and veneer. What you choose solely depends on what your expectations and commitment to wood care are.
SOLID WOOD means all exposed parts of an item are made of the same species of all natural wood. No other materials are included, such as plywood or particle board. There are a lot of advantages to solid wood furniture, it is practical and durable. Scratches, dings, water marks, and stains can all be repaired. With proper care, solid wood furniture can last a lifetime and be handed down to the next generation. A disadvantage to solid wood is the possibility of splitting when exposed to extreme conditions. The furniture could expand and contract, causing splits along the grain of the wood. Occasional conditioning of the wood and avoiding strong sunlight could prevent this from happening.
At HomeWorld we have a nice selection of solid wood furniture. A few examples are the Urban Craftsman series by Klaussner, featuring a bedroom suite and dining. And also, the Cherry Park series by Kincaid.
VENEER furniture begins with thin layers of wood glued together with the grain at right angles over a thick core. This crisscross design reduces the chances of splitting or cracking. Plus, the glue is the same waterproof adhesive used in aircraft and marine construction, which make it stronger than natural wood. Many people assume that veneer furniture is inferior and less expensive than solid wood. However, veneer is often used for high end pieces and can be more costly than solid wood. Furniture designers are able to create detailed and intricate patterns that are impossible to achieve using only solid wood.
Some fine examples of veneer furniture at HomeWorld are the Grand Isle collection by American Drew, and the Windward collection by Hooker Furniture.
Whether you choose solid wood or quality veneer, knowing the facts will help guide you to make the right choices for you and your home.
Contributed by Christine Bongiorno-Grabau, Home Furnishing Consultant at HomeWorld Furniture Honolulu
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