Types of Wood to Consider Before You Buy Furniture
Buying furniture can often be tricky business! At its best, furniture can be a fantastic heirloom investment, or at worst, discarded after a particularly boisterous evening party at home. From a longer term outlook, the style of furniture we opt for, and durability of course, all play a factor in the furniture we pick. Underscoring all of this is the budget â€“ so choose wisely your outer benchmark for splurging!
With the plethora of options, online and offline, now offered to us folk in Bangalore, and nationwide, furniture shopping just got a whole lot less tedious, and even more fun! Look at all the online furniture options there are! And raise your hand if youâ€™ve stalked/ discovered gorgeous individual boutiques and stores on Facebook and elsewhere.
Spending all that time, browsing, oohing and aahing at the wooden furniture displays (and ouchâ€™ing at some of the prices!), we learnt a fair bit about the basic ingredient that made this modern furniture wonderland â€“ wood! To pick the kind of furniture that really works for your lifestyle, you need to know the kind of wood that goes into the making of your furniture.
Of various sorts, the most popular (and of course, expensive) options of this type are Burma teak and Ghana teak. Used for more than just furniture, teak is strong, durable and resistant to decay. Nilambur teak from Kerala is a homegrown, though now protected option. While itâ€™s out of most budgets, keep an eye out for an investment find on your next antique shop visit.
King Sized Bed in teak, Rs 67,498 from pepperfry.com
Sheesham or Indian rosewood is the new it wood for many furniture makers. A hardwood like teak, sheesham seasons well and does not warp or split. It is also an easy wood to polish and finishes to a smooth surface. A durable timber, it is, like teak, highly resistant to termites etc. Sheesham also has a distinct grain pattern, which gives each piece of furniture a unique aesthetic, while retaining the warm wooden tones.
Mango is another popular option used for wooden furniture in India. Not as heavy as sheesham, mango is preferred for larger pieces of furniture like dining tables and beds, making them relatively easier to move. Also very durable, and water resistant, the grain pattern on mango wood furniture also makes for very interesting pieces! A softer wood in comparison to the other two, mango is easier to cut and shape (so you get a larger variety of designs!), and the colour varies from a light tan to darker browns. Keep as close to the natural look of the wood for furniture that truly makes a statement!
Also going by the aliases of mindi wood or white cedar wood, this is also an option used by carpenters. Coarser than mango or sheesham, mindi wood is mostly of a darker hue but also strong, durable and polishes to a great veneer! Youâ€™ll find this wood used to great effect in chests, trunks and the like. We didnâ€™t see much wooden furniture made of marandi in Bangalore, but keep an eye out!
If youâ€™re looking to buy wooden furniture online, or even at the many furniture retailers across Bangalore, youâ€™ll find most sellers have a mix of sheesham and mango wood furniture on offer. Then there are the antique dealers who have drool-worthy pieces in teak, mahogany, satinwood (especially notable in furniture from the British Raj, and prohibitively expensive!), and more. However, given our modest budgets for the most part, the starter kit of wood knowledge above should help you sail through your purchases! Now that you know what to look out for, happy shopping!