It used to be that if you wanted Solid Wood Furniture, all you had to do was say, “I want an oak dining table,” or “I’m looking for a mahogany bedroom set.” If you go into a furniture store today and say those things, chances are you’ll walk out with wood veneer glued to a piece of particle board or plywood.
Why does it matter? I mean, there are some wood veneers out there that look awesome. In fact, some people even prefer wood veneer.
Most people who know furniture, however, say nothing tops solid wood furniture. Why? They say the durability, style, and beauty of the real thing is something that can’t be matched by wood veneer.
Yes, solid wood furniture is more expensive, but for those looking for the best fine furniture available, they say it’s an investment, since the value of solid wood furniture increases with time.
The most common types of wood used for making furniture are oak, mahogany, and maple. Of these, oak is the most popular.
Oak is found in North America and Europe. It’s a hard and heavy wood that comes in two varieties, red and white. Of these, red is more popular for making furniture.
Oak stains very well, and due to its high content of a chemical called tannin, it’s resistant to insects and mold. Because it’s such a hard wood, it’s not prone to nicks or dents.
Another type of wood that’s popular is mahogany. Mahogany comes from Central and South America and Africa. It’s a medium-hard wood that’s very strong, and is tan to reddish brown in color. Mahogany is excellent for carving and engraving.
Maple is native to the Eastern US, and is also of medium hardness. It’s lighter than mahogany, but stains well, and can even be finished to resemble cherry or walnut.
Both cherry and walnut are used to make luxury furniture, but are too expensive for most.