High Quality Furniture: What Should You Look For?
Although it can be overwhelming at times, the fact that consumers have so many different types and styles of furniture to choose from is a really, really good thing. Yes, it can be difficult to make up your mind, and it can be exhausting going from one store to the next, however at the end of the day, a variety of products mean two very important things. The first, is that you’re bound to find something you love that uniquely matches your style. The second, is that with so many different competitors on the market, a product’s caliber is often seen as the most important differentiator. Think about it; given the choice, would you want to buy a sofa that’ll last a few years, or would you prefer to invest in a high-quality sofa that will stand the test of time?
This article will give you a few tips and tricks on how to tell if a piece of furniture is made with care, or if it will likely fall apart in a few short years.
Take the Cushions for a Test Drive
When it comes to furniture that you will be sitting on, firm cushions are often a sign of quality. Softer cushions may be your preference in terms of comfort, but soft cushions are often filled with low-quality batting that will lose its shape and comfort relatively quickly. You’ll also want the cushion to be fully covered with identical material on both sides. These coverings may be slightly more expensive, but they’ll allow you to flip the cushion so that wear occurs evenly on both sides. To ensure the cushion cover lasts as long as possible, look for one that can be easily removed for easy cleaning.
Examine the Upholstery Closely
It might be difficult to determine the type and quality of hardware that is contained within a piece of upholstered furniture, but there are a few tricks you can use. First, unzip the cushion cover and examine the contents. The most obvious sign of a low-quality piece is a foam-only cushion. Higher-end pieces will contain a foam block wrapped in another material like cotton or dacron, and will have a significantly higher density rating than a cheaper alternative (this rating may not be available on the tag, but the salesperson should be able to get this information for you).
Another sure sign that you’re looking at a piece of quality furniture is whether or not you can feel the frame when squeezing the arm or back of the chair or sofa. In high-quality sofas and furniture, it’s less likely you’ll be able to feel the underlying wooden frame.
Check the Legs of the Furniture
In terms of quality, you simply can’t beat solid wood legs. These should be heavy and joined (not glued) to the frame. Glued or nailed legs will not last as long as those that have been joined. Higher-end sofas typically have a leg in the middle of the sofa for additional support, so look for or inquire about that fifth leg — cheap sofas will seldom have this additional support.
Check the Composition of the Piece (Materials Used)
Fortunately, most people recognize that solid, heavy wood is a much more durable material than say, particle board. The DIY furniture assembly products may be appealing due to their relatively low price and the way they look, but the low-quality materials used in their construction is more often than not the factor that disappoints customers the most. There’s a very simple test that you can perform to ascertain a piece of wooden furniture quality; press it gently with your fingernail. If a small dent appears in the wood, it’s a pretty good indication that it won’t be able to stand up to daily life. If plywood is used, note that less than 9 layers could mean lessened structural integrity. Inspect solid wood for knots; knots can be susceptible to cracking over time. While it’s generally recommended that you avoid pressed board or particle board, veneers can be acceptable provided the base layer is a quality piece of wood.
Look for Wood that is Joined at the Ends and Corners
As previously mentioned, you’ll want to steer clear of pieces that are assembled primarily through the use of glue and/or nails. While the construction may seem sturdy enough at the beginning, these adhesion methods will fail much quicker than if the pieces are joined at the ends or corners. Pieces that are built with joinery are far less likely to come apart and are capable of supporting more weight.
Considering just how expensive furniture can be, it’s important that your investment is one that will last for years to come. Hopefully this article has given you some insight on things to look for when shopping for a piece of high-quality furniture. Alternately, if you want to shop for high-quality furniture without having to worry whether or not it’s made with the care you’d expect, you can shop online at Furniture.ca.”