It is well known since long that wooden furniture is a favorite for all to decorate their homes, offices and other places. It’s been around for hundreds of years ago and even from earlier times. Furniture manufacturing is based mainly on usage of wood.
Depending on the geographical area of origin, the woods are divided into European (usually Northern Hemisphere) and exotic woods. The first ones (which are classified according to their hardness) are used for joinery and various carpentry and construction work. Exotic or tropical woods (teca, iroko, ebony and mahogany) are highly prized for their ability to withstand the harsh weather, so they are mainly used for outdoor and garden furniture.
Wood Can Be Divided into Three Categories:
Hardwoods come from slow-growing trees. They are highly appreciated and are considered the most expansive with high quality. Hardwoods are those of oak, walnut, cherry, chestnut, holm oak and olive.
Softwoods come from conifers and other fast-growing trees. They are less resistant and their value is lower as they come from more abundant trees. Softwoods are pine, cypress, fir, aspen and birch.
Composites are the low-priced form of wood and are literally manufactured, rather than growing.
- Plywood: multiple layers of thin sheets of wood glued together and pressed. Plywood is strong and resist swelling, shrinking and warping.
- Particle board: sawdust and wood chips mixed with a little glue or resin which is then molded and pressure treated.
Most Popular Woods:
Oak. It is one of the most resistant and durable, so it is used to make quality furniture and parquet.
Walnut. It is one of the noblest woods. Uniform in appearance, it is used in luxury furniture and paneling, as well as in the manufacture of turned elements.
Cherry. It has a beautiful orange tone, so it is very appreciated to build furniture. But it is also delicate and prone to darkening and woodworm.
Olive. Artistic and decorative works in olive trees are very appreciated for the colourfulness of the wood fibres of this tree, especially those that are close to the root.
Cedar. Mahogany-like in tone, it is lighter and thicker textured. Used to line furniture.
Chesnut. It is widely used to manufacture kitchen furniture doors because of its strength and elasticity.
Elm. Highly appreciated in marquetry and joinery.
Beech. It is not as valuable as others, but is widely used in furniture, chairs or decorative veneer. It is the ideal wood for turning elements, such as stair railings in solid wood.
Pine. It is widely used in carpentry, plywood, formwork or joinery.
Ash. It is used in joinery and carpentry, and in the elaboration of curved elements.
Mahogany. It comes from the Amazon, and is reddish and easy to work with. It is mainly used in cabinetmaking for luxury furniture and other quality coatings.