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Selecting the Right Cabinet Wood


Selecting the Right Cabinet Wood 

Whenever we think of furniture we think of wood. Other materials like steel, chrome, fiber and glass that have come into vogue in recent times can still not compete with the classic elegance of wood. Selecting the cabinet wood is important since your choice will determine many things – the overall look and feel of the piece as well as the room, the strength and durability of the product and of course the price. Wood doesn’t come cheap but they always provide value for money as they can last for years to come.

Before selecting the right wood it is important to know more about it. Wood can be classified as soft wood or hard wood. Softwood is the wood obtained from the conifers i.e. needle bearing evergreen trees while the hardwood is the one obtained from broad leafed trees that shed in autumn. Hardwood is stronger than softwood and thus is difficult to mold, whereas it is easier to shape softwood. Some examples of hardwood are mahogany, walnut, teak, oak, elm, ash, aspen, birch, poplar and maple among others. Pine, cedar, spruce, fir, Douglas-fir and larch are examples of softwood.

Both types of wood can be described with following basic natural characteristics that will help you in understanding and selecting wood as per your requirements:

  • Color: Woods come in different shades and colors. Softwood is generally lighter while the hardwood is darker than the other.
  • Texture and pattern: Each type of wood has a unique pattern and texture on it. The patterns can either be very prominent or very fine (almost invisible). Patterns range from cross, spiral, wavy, vertical, and circular and in form of wavy lines.

Here are different types of wood that are used for making cabinets worldwide with their key properties. Read thoroughly before selecting the right cabinet wood  so that your choice meets all your needs perfectly well.

  • Oak: It is among the strongest wood and takes stain very well. A good option for long term use and also economical.
  • Cherry: People who love antique furniture, prefer cherry wood since it turns darker with passage of time and exposure to sunlight. Even with just a little stain you will see the wood turn reddish brown. Price ranges from mid to high.
  • Maple: Commonly used in RTA cabinets all over the world. Smooth and strong, maple made cabinets look very bright and smooth.
  • Birch: Cream or light yellow in color, it is hard and smooth. It is highly durable and retains it natural texture and pattern even after staining.
  • Hickory: Heavier than most types of wood used for cabinets, it is hard and strong and comes in largest range of colors from lighter cream to darker reddish brown or even black.
  • Mahogany: One of the most expensive woods that gives you a classy and luxurious looking cabinets. It is the right choice for those looking at rich and classy cabinets.
  • Bamboo: An eco-friendly option, but needs to be veneered on another wood plank.
  • Pine: Great for vintage style cabinets, pine comes in three shades white, yellow and ponderosa.

If you don’t want to use the wood in natural shades you can use paint grade wood like pine, birch, poplar, etc. that can be painted in your favorite color to match the color scheme of your house. Selecting the right wood is also easy with oak, maple, cherry or pine which can take varying shades of stain to give your cabinet a naturally finished, woody look.