Wooden furniture is something you can easily find in every home. The durability and versatility of wood are the reason why this material is highly popular for home furniture.
In addition to the style and design, there are various types of woods available to build up the furniture of your choice. They are categorized into three main types: hardwoods, softwoods, and manufactured woods.
Hardwoods are claimed as the favorite option in the woodworking world. Most of their types come with variegated colors, grain patterns, and textures.
However, the usefulness of hardwood comes with a price; they are relatively expensive, especially the exotic ones.
There are various types of hardwood to explore, but ten hardwood types below are enough to get you started.
Mahogany is characterized by darker tint (reddish-brown to deep-red), straight natural pattern, as well as medium texture and hardness. It is popularly known as the material of high quality furniture, such as tables and cabinets.
The brown wood types, walnut, is both hard and solid. Despite this, walnut is quite easy to work with, especially when you use it for furniture accent. One of walnut types, burr walnut, also has a striking pattern that makes it perfect for decorative furniture.
Maple trees are native wood species of Asia, but they can be easily found in some other continents, including Europe and North America.
They are sturdy, durable, and easy to clean. Because of those qualities, maple is often used as the main material of kitchen furniture.
Native to the northern hemisphere, red oak is heavy and durable. This wood type also has pinkish red shade and porous grain patterns.
Moreover, because of its fungal resistant feature, red oak wood type is commonly used for furniture, flooring, cabinets, and paneling.
Ash is strong and dense, but it is pliable enough to be turned into baseball bats, electric guitar bodies, even classic car frames. Woodworkers also list ash as one of their favorites because this wood type is easy to form and construct with different tools.
Because of its sturdy and stable feature, birch is mainly turned into plywood, crates, boxes, as well as interior doors and furniture. This wood has a slightly porous surface with subtle white and light brown color.
Cherry wood is actually related to the small pinkish cherry fruits; both of them come from the same tree. In its earlier state, this wood has a light brown shade. However, when it is made into furniture, the color of cherry wood will turn darker as time goes.
Teak is listed as the most common types of wood for furniture. Originated from Burmese forest, this wood type is durable as well as resistant to pest and water.
Teak is not only excellent for furniture but also can be used for carving and exterior construction.
East Indian Rosewood
Rosewood belongs to the types of woods that grow in tropical forests. East Indian rosewood, in particular, mostly grows in India, Brazil, and Madagascar. High density and durability are the main characteristics of this dark-shaded wood.
Flooring, furniture framing, and engineering construction are some primary uses of beech. This wood type is valued for its functionality rather than decorative purpose.
Besides being used for permanent constructions, beech is an excellent choice for firewood. This is due to its ability to burn for several hours while producing bright flames.
Compared to hardwoods, softwoods are less expensive and easier to find. These types of woods are generated from coniferous trees: the evergreen plants that produce their fruits in the form of cones.
Although softwoods aren’t necessarily weaker than hardwoods, they do have brighter shades, such as reddish and yellow instead of brown. Here are some popular types of softwood with their special characteristics.
Pine is soft, durable, and easy to shape—making it perfect for carving and furniture. Because of these features, pine is often used to create carpentry items which include panels, floors, and window frames.
Like all species of spruce, white spruce is originated from northern regions with a temperate climate. It is extremely easy to turn this soft wood into joinery or construction frames. You can plane, mold, screw, or nail white spruce without a lot of effort.
Red cedar, also known as aromatic cedar, belongs to the common types of woods which grow in the eastern regions of the United States. It is not only easy to shape and plane, but also resistant to pests, insects, and decay.
Despite its classification as softwoods, fir is harder and stronger than most wood types in the group. For this reason, fir is mainly used for building in addition to furniture making. This wood is characterized by straight features and reddish brown tint.
Native to the northern hemisphere, larch is usually used for flooring, construction lumber, as well as interior and exterior wooden frames. Larch is naturally covered with resin, which makes it resistant to pests and decay.
3. Manufactured Wood
Besides hard and soft natural wood, there is another type of wood which can be used for furniture or construction. The manufactured or factory-made wood is considered a great alternative for those who are looking for variety and practicality.
Some common types of manufactured wood are listed as follows.
Due to its inexpensive price, fiberboard is classified as popular kinds of wood for furniture products. It is created by bonding hard or soft woods with heat, wax, and resin. Such process results in dense wood which has high durability.
MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard) is a type of fiberboard which has dense and strong features. This manufactured wood is made from small wood pieces instead of solid wood. In spite of it, MDF is more than sufficient to be turned into excellent home furniture.
Also known as chipboard, particle board is constructed from wood chips and shavings. They are joined together with resin to create a flat and dense structure. When it is made into furniture, particle board is usually combined with a thin finishing layer on the top.
Layers of wood veneers are used to build plywood in the manufacturing process. The process and materials give plywood smooth and flat surface, which makes it perfect for both flooring and furniture.
Veneer is the types of woods that are taken from the outside edge of trees. For this reason, both veneer and solid wood are actually similar in terms of features and quality.
However, some types of veneer are more expensive than solid wood because of its excellent cut and surface.
Choosing the best types of woods can be tricky. So, before starting your next project to build wooden furniture or buy one for your house, be sure you know the basics. Hopefully this little list helps.