Which wood species is right for your furniture?
production of solid wood furniture, it is possible to use various types of
wood, from soft coniferous trees to very hard exotic woods. When choosing the
type of wood from which, for example, your new dining table will be made, you
should take into account several properties that the material provides. When
choosing functional and visually attractive furniture, the most important
features are, for example, the strength, durability, colour and texture of the
wood from which it is made.
Wood is one
of the oldest construction materials and is still used today. Each type of wood
finds its use in industry due to its physical and mechanical properties. In
architecture and construction, conifers are most often used mainly as
load-bearing elements of buildings or various construction and joinery products.
In particular, the mostly used are spruce and pine, because they are cheap,
light, have good thermal insulation properties and we also have plenty of them
in local forests.
The use of
conifers is also common in the furniture industry, but we at Kaplan furniture
only work with hardwoods, which, thanks to their cellular structure, have
better mechanical and physical properties for this area. We also opt for them
because of a more attractive appearance, either in terms of texture or colour.
Strength of wood
one of the most important properties of wood, since it determines the
material's resistance to damage to its internal particles. Practically, thanks
to it, it is possible to process solid wood in various ways without breaking it
as a whole. During woodworking processes, the behaviour and limits of wood must
be known in order to avoid unwanted changes. Each type of wood has a slightly
different strength. That’s why it is important to adapt it to its use in order
to achieve the longest possible life of the product. Oak is a well-known, very
hard and strong wood in our country. Therefore, it is used especially in the
production of chests of drawers, cabinets, tables and chairs. In the Kaplan
furniture portfolio you can see, for example, the Elica extendable table in
Durability of wood
is clearly a basic condition that quality furniture must meet. If we want our
new design table to serve us in the interior for many years, we should pay
attention to several factors. Even before the production process, it is
important to know where the raw wood comes from and how and under which
conditions it was processed. It is considered sustainable to use trees from
local forests that are controlled and replanted for production. Such wood also
has various certificates, most often it is the FSC certificate, which
guarantees that the basic material of your table comes from a sustainably
the time of tree felling, experts know what they will use the wood for. Depending
on the size, structure of the tree and the quality of its wood, they will
determine the use, for example for a long table with extension or a dining
chair. Usually, flawless material whose behaviour is well known is chosen. In
some cases, however, wood with a large number of knots, for example, is
deliberately chosen, which gives the product a unique appearance. Working with
such material is more complicated and needs special care. At Kaplan furniture,
however, we can meet your demands and offer a version made of oak wood called
"wild oak". When filling the knots, we use a dark filler to further
emphasize the unique look that is never the same. If you would be interested in
such a unique design table, send us a request.
condition for quality product processing is its construction. In order to
produce, for example, a strong and stable dining chair, one has to choose the
most suitable method of joining the individual parts. In this step; the means of
transport and the client's possibilities must also be taken into account. In
general, we expect professionally assembled products to have a longer lifespan
compared to furniture that the customers assemble on their own at home with using
few screws. Our article "Pre-assembled chairs with mortise-and-tenon construction or flat-pack chairs? Which are better?" is specifically dedicated to chair
service life of a solid wood product depends not only on the very products, but
also on how the would-be owner approaches it. Wood is a natural material and
continues to work even after mechanical and surface treatment. This is why it
is so unique and highly sought after. In order for it to continue to provide us
with its benefits, it needs to be regularly cared for and maintained.
Especially, if it is an extendable table that we use every day. We also have a
more detailed article on this topic "What is the best way to care for your wooden furniture?".
Wood colour and texture
the last parameter when choosing wood is what catches our eye at first glance.
The colour and texture of the wood determine whether a particular design table
is attractive to us. The whole family usually meets at the dining table and it
becomes a dominant element of the interior. To choose the size of the dining
table, we have prepared an article with recommendations "How to choose the right dining table size?". However, even a smaller table attracts a lot of
attention and it depends on its shape, how it will affect the entire space and
also the person. Subtler designs let smaller rooms breathe, while in larger and
more spacious rooms, sturdy table legs and table tops will stand out. A larger
surface sets off also the texture of the wood beautifully. With angular
designs, the texture is visible in one direction of the cut, while with rounded
and shaped pieces, the material will stand out in different directions and
reveal original figure. Each wood has its own typical texture, which is always
unique and creates a distinctive pattern in interiors.
Oak is the
most popular for its texture. It is distinctive due to pore clusters on the cross-sections
of the annual rings and the shiny spots called "tiger stripes". It is
completed by an earthier tone that, despite the significant differences between
spring and summer wood, has harmonious effect. The colour goes hand in hand
with the wood texture and accentuates it.
treated only with natural oil or transparent coating maintains its natural colour,
but it is possible to change its shade using wood stains. These are absorbed
into the wood and have an effect on accentuating or, on the contrary, softening
the texture of the wood. They are often used when working with beech wood,
which is light in itself with a not very pronounced texture. On the other hand,
only natural colourless oils or varnishes are used for woods with a distinctive
pattern, such as American walnut or heartwood beech, so that the wood retains
its original colour. In general, it is recommended to choose elements from the
same wood species and in the same colour shade, so that the interior looks
If you are
still not sure about the choice of wood or colour, write to us and we will
gladly to advise you.
Summary of properties of woods used in Kaplan furniture
Beech – hardwood with a fine and even texture, paler colours. It can be finished with an oil/matte coating or have a changed shade with a wide selection of wood stains. In a stained version, for example, the Libra coffee table (third and fourth photo in the photo gallery).
Heartwood beech – hardwood, characteristic transitions between sapwood and heartwood – dark and light streaks. Surface treatment with transparent coating/natural oil only. Design, for example, on the Libra table (eighth to twelfth photo in the photo gallery), Libra bench wholly wooden or Ancora chair wholly wooden (fifth to eighth photo).
Oak – hardwood. Darker and earthier in colour than beech. A more pronounced texture with distinct pore clusters in the cross-section of the annual rings. Also characterized by shiny spots called "tiger stripes". We recommend surface treatment with natural oil/matte transparent coating, but it is also possible to change the shades with wood stains. Design of product, for example, on the Gatta sideboard, the Gatta table and the Elica dining chair.
Wild oak – oak wood, that is specially selected with a large number of knots, these are filled with black filler to make them even more pronounced. Each piece is original, and we can make a table top from such material upon request.
walnut – hardwood imported from Canadian forests. Characteristic dark brown
colour and velvet transitions of annual rings. Higher price category but especially
elegant. Surface treatment only with natural oil/transparent matte coating.
Design can be seen, for example, on the Arca chair wholly wooden or on the
Edita chair with an upholstered seat.