In this article, the furniture experts at Fireside Furniture are going to do something a little different: we’re going to look at the different types of wood that are generally used in furniture, and some of the advantages and disadvantages they have. You’ll note, as you browse our selection, that our furniture is of very high quality, but it is sourced from a variety of different kind of wood.
The first distinction to make is between softwood and hardwood. Softwoods come from conifer trees, while hardwoods generally come from deciduous trees (trees who sometimes lose their leaves). In this article, we’re going to look at softwoods, while in the next article, we’ll look at hardwoods.
Technically, softwoods find their application more for structural use, and this is because they are more affordable than hardwoods. The following woods fall under the softwood category:
Pinewood, which comes from pine trees mostly found in the northern areas of the earth, usually comes with more knots than other woods, and can range in color, from light brown to red or yellow tones. Also, pinewood has an aesthetic advantage to many people, as their bright colors cheer up the room. However, the disadvantage is that it can sometimes be weak and prone to twisting and warping. We often find that pine is better for indoor furniture, though if you want to use it for outdoor furniture, it should be treated first. This gorgeous Farmhouse hutch is made from solid reclaimed pine, in fact.
This wood is light and straight-grained, and you are most likely to find it in trim and moldings. Unlike pine wood, it is resistant to twisting and warping, which makes it work well for moldings and trim. Another advantage of hemlock wood is that it is moderately resistant to dents and markings.
With a gorgeous cinnamon color and a distinctive grain, redwood heartwood is strong and resistant to insect attack and fungus decay — making it very suitable for outdoor use. That’s why you’ll often see redwood used in decking and fences. Another interesting feature of redwood heartwood is that this resistance is not only on the surface, but along the lumber, and is more durable and harder than cedar. One disadvantage, however, is that redwood is expensive, and has fewer knots.
Among softwoods, Douglas fir is strongest. A native to eastern Asia and North America, it is closed-grained and tight-knotted. The wood colors are rosy and redden when exposed over time. As a very strong wood, Douglas Fir can be seen used in making aircraft and boats. Also, Douglas Fir is great for flooring, as it has a beautiful look. Like redwood, however, one setback of Douglas Fir woods are their prices – they can be expensive.
Which Wood Should I Choose?
Fireside Furniture carries a variety of different woods in our furniture, and the best way to choose is to come into our showroom and see them in person. There’s nothing like the feel of the wood grain on your fingers, or seeing the gorgeous colors up close. Stop in to our showroom in Pompton Plains today and see what we have!
And don’t forget to check out our next article, where we’ll discuss the different hardwoods.