FURNITURE MAKING: THE BEAUTY IN THE DETAILS
The art of furniture making lies in the details, it is important to take these into consideration when producing the perfect piece of furniture to suit your needs. The difference between an average and an excellent piece of furniture is determined by the seemingly minor features that go into crafting it – such as joints, feet, upholstery, and finishing. This article delves into the intricacies involved in making a high-quality piece of furniture.
When constructing a quality piece of furniture, the choice made for the type of joint used can impact its overall functionality and appearance. The main categories of joints include butt joints, mortise and tenon joints, and dovetail joints – all of which have their own advantages. Understanding these properties can help you choose the best joint for your furniture.
Let’s start with butt joints. They are a simple type of joint – consisting of two pieces of wood attached by their flat ends. While these are simple and can be put together with relative ease and convenience, they are not as structurally strong as compared to other types of joints. Mortise and tenon joints, on the other hand, are harder to shape but provide greater structural strength. These are made up of one piece of wood fitting into the recess of another piece, thereby securing the two together. They are commonly used for frame construction in order to provide a sturdier build for your furniture. Lastly, dovetail joints are made up of the interlocking ends of two pieces of wood that have been cut into tails and pins. While these joints require a longer process of cutting and fitting, they are popular for both their strength and unique decorative appearance. Having these different properties in mind can help determine which joints fit best for different types of furniture.
Another detail to consider when making a quality piece of furniture is its feet. Choosing the right feet can protect both your furniture and the surface on which they are placed. Furniture feet come in different varieties, and understanding their uses and advantages can ensure that your piece of furniture is designed to suit your needs. Such varieties include levelling feet, bumper feet, saddle feet, and glides.
Levelling feet ensure stability for your furniture – especially on uneven surfaces. Bumper feet protect delicate surfaces and prevent furniture pieces from skidding. Saddle feet are commonly used on chairs to prevent damage to both the chair leg and the floor. Glides protect the surface of the floor and allow for easier manoeuvring of furniture without damaging the floor. Taking into context the intended use of your furniture as well as the surface on which it is placed, different furniture feet can help you maximise functionality and minimise damage.
UPHOLSTERY OF CUSHIONED FURNITURE
Next, choosing the right upholstery is important for ensuring a quality piece of cushioned furniture. On top of determining the right colour scheme and size, it is also crucial to consider both the material and fill that it is made of.
When it comes to picking the right material for your upholstery, note that different materials such as fabric and leather would have varying properties and care requirements that need to be maintained over the years to ensure durability. Selecting the right fill will also help you achieve the ideal balance of cushioning and support for your furniture – a softer fill allows users to sink into their seats while a firmer fill provides greater back support. Depending on the intended purpose of your furniture, understanding these different properties can help ensure a durable piece that fits the needs of its users.
The last significant detail of a good quality piece of furniture is the finishing. Here are some ways to ensure a smooth and quality finish for your furniture.
When sanding grooves and curved edges in furniture pieces, refrain from doing so with steel wool as it can leave fibres behind in the curves. Instead, opt for using a pad to sand these surfaces to provide a smoother finish. Additionally, gently sanding in between coats with wet/dry sandpaper when applying the finish to furniture will help clean out imperfections and roughen the surface so that the next coat will adhere better. While these actions may seem minor, they work together to achieve a clean, polished look for your furniture.
SMALL DETAILS, BIG DIFFERENCES
Producing a quality piece of furniture involves taking the little details into consideration. Being meticulous in those details can make a big difference in both the functionality and appearance of your furniture and ensure that it accurately fits your needs. If you would like to find out more about making that perfect piece of furniture, don’t hesitate to reach out to us here for a free consultation! Where else would you find the better make?
8 October 2021