Know what you're buying
An educated consumer is our best client . . .
Know your craftsman . . .
Hopefully you have gotten to know me as a passionate artisan, and here to the right is my shop and how you will find me at a craft show. ->
Other craftsmen may be unknowns . . . Some go by general reputations.
The Amish / mennonites are fine craftsmen and if anyone tells you they only use hand tools they would be wrong. Their shops often use machines that are hydraulic or air powered from stationary diesel engines.
This isn't bad as some antique furniture was machine made . . . the Shakers were at the forefront of their era's technology using water powered mills.
Modern artisan furniture often is made with power tools . . .but then its not about tools but the process and the craftsman.
There are links for your information below.
Wood is grown, not manufactured...
Why material is important . . .
When furniture is made from MDF or particle board (often called manufactured wood )and is damaged it may not be readily repaired and could become landfill. Often when MDF and particle board are exposed to water they disintegrate. I believe these sheet goods are best used for painted projects, cabinetry and some built ins. (please see lower right of page).
If a sheet good is required for a design then I use cabinet grade veneer core plywood. Minimizes those nasty chemicals that can off gas. This is stronger and more stables as its made from thin layers of solid wood.
Domestic species of wood are harvested with better practices while paying Canadians in that industry, as well as local suppliers.
If the origin of a big box piece is foreign and covered with a veneer - do we know what that species of hardwood really is?
We often falsely name foreign woods for what they look like - Brazilian cherry is not cherry.
Using veneer can give a piece a certain look - a look like all the others in the stores. Even though veneer was used in antique and vintage fine furniture, ask your self, "Is the construction being covered by the veneer of that quality?" Many veneers used currently are very thin and not as durable.
Consider a solid wood piece and the beauty that comes with it being solid wood. The beauty it came with straight from the tree and the satisfaction of knowing that piece supports Canadians on all levels.