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Do You Know The Difference? [furniture definitions explained with images]

Sometimes everyday furniture lingo can be confusing. Here’s a few definitions to help clarify some common furniture terms.

Rattan vs. Wicker

The words rattan and wicker are usually used interchangeable to describe outdoor/indoor furniture. But rattan and wicker do not mean the same thing. Rattan is a raw material, related to the palm tree. It grows rapidly in the jungles of the South Eastern region and is considered one of the strongest woods available. The outside peel of the rattan is often used to bind furniture together at the joints.


Urban Lodge rattan dining chairs by Jofran are casual and extremely durable.

Wicker, on the other hand is not a material. Wicker is the technique of weaving natural materials such as bamboo and willow into a pattern. These natural materials are soaked so that they become bendable and are easily woven to create different furniture pieces.

China Cabinet vs. Curio

China cabinets were designed solely for the purpose of protecting and displaying fine china, such as your grandmother’s treasured dishes. Originally, these cabinets had wood sides and glass fronts so that the wares could be admired from the front. Design has changed in modern times.


Urban Craftsmen China Cabinet displays your fine china safely behind glass doors.

Curios are display cabinets for all sorts of collectibles, whether it be figurines or photographs.


Soloman curio by Howard Miller displays your collectibles viewable from all angles.

For amazing collections displayed in curios, click here.

Counter-Height vs. Bar-Height

Counter-height dining tables considered casual style and are usually 34″-36″ tall. It’s a comfortable height for standing and sitting.


Bar height is considered even more casual than counter-height dining. Bar-height tables are usually smaller and taller in size measuring 40″-42″ tall.


For more info about counter-height vs bar-height, click here.

100% Leather vs. Leather-Match

When a sofa or sectional is 100% leather, that means it is all leather on all sides, including the back and sides.

When a sofa or sectional is leather-match, that means it is 100% leather on wherever your body touches, such as the seat, back, and arms. But the sides and the back of the furniture may be vinyl to match the color of leather. A leather-match sofa is usually less expensive than a 100% leather sofa because of the  materials used.

Do you have any furniture terms in need of clarification? If so, let me know in the comments below.


About Terri Dux

When not watching her favorite TV channel, HGTV, Terri likes crafting, gardening, and thrifting at neighborhood garage sales.

One comment on “Do You Know The Difference? [furniture definitions explained with images]

  1. bqemretane
    May 8, 2016

    Thanks for sharing! Love it

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