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Why Is Solid Wood Furniture Expensive?

There are a number of factors that help determine the price of that solid wood furniture you've had your eye on. Supply and demand, for example. How unique are those expensive dressers you’re looking at? Is it factory made or was it custom made by hand? Is it imported or American made? And perhaps most significantly, is it solid wood furniture, or is laminate or veneer part of its construction?

What is veneer and how does it differ from solid wood?

Veneer is a thin layer (about an eighth of an inch in thickness or less) that is glued to a less expensive material hidden underneath. The material beneath may be particle board or a lesser quality wood, enabling the furniture maker to create outwardly attractive furniture at a very low cost. Veneer is real wood, but quality differs greatly with the manufacturer. When purchasing veneer furniture pieces, be careful to deal with a reputable furniture maker – one that has been around for a long time with a reputation for craftsmanship. That way you can be sure the manufacturer will back the product in the event of any issues that may present themselves after purchase.

Bench*Made Dining

Why choose laminate?

For furniture manufacturers, laminate is the most cost effective way to create good looking furniture pieces. However, laminate is a step down from veneer. It’s a synthetic material, or an extremely thin slice of real wood, that typically hides a low quality material beneath it. Laminate is common in low end furniture lines. Laminate can be great for children’s furniture or spaces with extremely high volume. If furniture with a laminated surface becomes damaged, it isn’t costly to replace.

Solid wood furniture is expensive because it lasts.

With solid wood, what you see is what you get. It’s wood – nothing more or and nothing less. As a result, you can sand or stain it. Nothing will fall apart or peel. Unlike laminate or veneer, when solid wood furniture shows wear, it adds character. Think of furniture with a weathered look. It isn’t uncommon to treat brand new furniture with that weathered look to add a desirable shabby chic look to it.

Solid wood is much more durable. Its lengthy lifespan can make an heirloom of it. Unlike veneer or laminated furniture, solid wood living room, dining room, or bedroom furniture can someday last to become an antique, if maintained reasonably well. Solid wood is an investment that can pay for itself several times over because of its longevity.

It makes sense that real wood furniture is more of an investment, but what’s the most expensive wood for furniture? That depends. Generally hardwoods like maple, oak, and cherry are more valuable than softwoods like pine and cedar, which grow faster and are more likely to show dents. Some of the most expensive wood furniture is made from exotic woods that have unique characteristics, like mahogany, teak, and ebony.

Bassett Bench*Made Bed

Solid Wood Furniture from Bassett

Bassett has been in the furniture business for over 100 years, creating furniture pieces of all kinds and materials. Our Bench*Made line – custom made solid wood furniture – is the envy of the furniture market today. Real wood furniture fashioned from solid red leaf maple or oak. Made and sourced entirely in America, each piece is hand made by a craftsman in Bassett, Virginia.

Check out our Bench*Made line by visiting a Bassett showroom near you. You’ll be surprised at the beauty and value you can find close to you!

Shop Bench*Made
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