Furniture Anatomy: The Skeleton
Are you an interior designer looking to make custom pieces for your clients but you have no idea what to say to a manufacturer? Are you just a regular street person that wants to know the difference between high quality furniture and someone just phoning it in? Sorry for calling you a street person by the way. That's just how I see people these days: interior designer or street person.
ANYWAY. The following post will illustrate the characteristics of high quality furniture and the red flags you need to look for before you open your wallet.
GOOD: HARD WOOD
There are numerous types of hard wood that can be used for construction. Some finish better than others and we like to consider these types as "Show Woods". These are the kinds that you can clear coat, lacquer, stain, glaze, etc. These are generally more expensive so you want to delegate them to the parts of your furniture that will be visible.
Left to Right: WALNUT | WHITE OAK | MAPLE
The upholstered portion of the item can be made of less expensive hard wood that does not need to be finished.
Left to Right: ALDER | POPLAR
BAD: SOFT WOOD
Left to Right: PINE | CEDAR
GOOD: WOOD SCREWS, DOWELS, AND GLUE
- DRYWALL SCREWS
- GLUING UP VARIOUS PIECES OF WOOD
THE BACK POST:
The back post of a piece of furniture is like the spine on the human body. It supports and connects all of the major elements of the chair or body: the arms and the legs. Just like your spine, your back post should be strong and supportive. What makes it strong and supportive? Well it should be one solid piece of hardwood. No glued, screwed, or stapled pieces of wood.
The Lex Lee Studio line features 1 dining chair that has a visible back post. Most often, the back post is hidden under upholstery, so you won't be able to tell after the item is complete. SO, LEX, WHAT DO I DO? Great question, my interior design compadre. You should inspect your frames prior to upholstery if this is a new shop for you. If your shop doesn't let you visit, YOU RUN AS FAR AWAY AS POSSIBLE. A good manufacturer wants you to come and inspect your items and wants you to know what you're talking about. You both save time AND money because there will be no surprises.
This concludes today's anatomy lesson. Stay tuned for the next installment of Furniture Anatomy: The Muscles. AKA: the padding. Although "muscles" sounds cooler.
Goodbye my treasures,