10 Things You Need to Know Before You Purchase Wood Furniture from Natural Living

  1. Hardwood furniture is beautiful.The dramatic grain patterns give each piece a character of its own – a one-of-a-kind handmade work of art for your home. What’s more, the use of hardwood creates opportunities for detail work and graceful forms that just aren’t possible with pressed-wood furniture. A custom-built piece from Natural Living Furniture makes a statement about your sense of style, beauty and quality.
  2. You can believe in the materials.Wood doesn’t lie. Sheesham is Sheesham. Cherry is Cherry. Particle board is a composite material made by compressing a mixture of ground-up scrap wood and resin glue, covered by wood-grained vinyl. Hard wood furniture is strong, honest, durable. Particle board furniture is cheap, susceptible to moisture and tends to fall apart if you move it more than once. Your purchase from Natural Living Furniture is built to last – not just for years, but for generations.
  3. You can believe in the construction.Many of our craftsmen are third and fourth generation wood workers from Rajasthan. Their use of time-honored joinery techniques such as dovetails, mortise & tenon and lock mitres give drawers, legs, shelves and doors strength and stability. What’s even more important is their understanding of the movement of wood. The artisans who make Natural Living furniture build our furniture to accommodate changes as the wood expands and contracts through the seasonal changes. Our furniture is built to be strong, stable and last a long time.
  4. You can believe in the finish.Some finishes are used to hide the wood, or cover up particle board. We use finish to enhance the natural grain and give you a piece that is in harmony with your home décor. Our stains are applied to each component of your furniture before it’s assembled. That’s so you won’t suddenly have an unfinished stripe appear in the winter, when the wood contracts. Our finish of choice is a conversion varnish. It will resist water marks and alcohol and look great with dry, or ever-so-slightly damp, dusting. (For our dressing tables, please note: nail polish remover is deadly to all finishes. You have been warned!)
  5. Hardwood furniture can be repaired, restored, even refinished.Life is full of unexpected bumps. If your hardwood furniture is scratched it can be repaired and the finish touched-up. If a door or drawer is broken we can make one that’s identical to replace it. If your decorating palette changes, your furniture can be refinished to match your new style.

5a. What’s more, if in five years you want another piece of furniture to match, we’ll be able to make it for you. We don’t have furniture “lines” that are discontinued after a few years. We make hand-crafted furniture one piece at a time. So if you decide to add a sofa table and want it to match the media cabinet you originally bought from us, we can do it.

  1. Making hardwood furniture is a Green process.The hardwood lumber that we use to manufacture our furniture grows in sustainably managed forests. Our wood is selectively harvested in small groups or as single trees to minimize the impact of the environment. Our manufacturing process is virtually waste-free. Bark becomes mulch; trimmings are processed into paper; slab wood from our sawmills is used to heat shops and homes; sawdust and moulder mill is used to bed livestock and horses; waste edgings and chips are reground for use in landscaping. In addition, all materials used in the handcrafting of Natural Living Furniture are formaldehyde-free, and all stains and finishes are low VOC.
  2. You can meet the person who made your furniture.Natural Living Furniture is not made by robots on assembly lines. Our furniture is made by a relatively small number of millworkers, builders and finishers. From time to time we have events and bring them to our store to meet our customers and talk about their techniques and craft. So it’s not at all unusual for you to be able to meet the person who made your furniture… or who will be making it soon.
  3. You are part of the design process.The designs offered by Natural Living Furniture cover a wide range of styles and contemporary for dining, entertainment centers, beds, dressers, chests, cabinets and more. But for us, our standard designs are just the starting point. After the design has been selected, the customer chooses the size and other specifications. Most of the standard designs can be tailored to the customer’s specifications – our pieces can be scaled up or down to fit a particular space in your home. Additionally, new design proposals can be discussed and drafted.
  4. Hardwood furniture is easy to care for.We believe hardwood furniture grows even more beautiful with age. But dust, dirt and grime can accumulate on any surface and can harm the wood’s finish. Regular dusting with a clean, lint-free cloth will maintain a clean surface and protect the finish from dirt build-up. Occasional dusting with a cloth lightly dampened with a non-wax polish will help clean and restore the appearance of your furniture. You should avoid the use of ammonia-based products or silicone oils. Excessive or prolonged exposure to direct sunlight, high temperatures or high humidity can cause damage to both the finish and the wood itself.
  5. You can believe in our warranty.We’ll be happy to provide details about our warranty against defects and our policy for cancellation of custom orders at our store. Briefly, all Natural Living Furniture comes with a lifetime warranty on materials. We expect our furniture to last a lifetime. Go to any antique show and you’ll see hardwood furniture that has not only survived for generations, but still looks beautiful. Hardwood lasts. Your custom-built, hand-crafted furniture from Ohio Hardwood Furniture will last a lifetime, and then some.
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How to judge the quality of Wooden Furniture

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It is not all that difficult for one to judge the quality of wooden furniture, and you need not have to be an expert to do so. All that is required essentially is that you give a good look at the material, construction and finish. Take your time in doing so. Lets dive into the aspects you should take a closer look at the next time you decide to go spend your hard earned money on a piece of wooden furniture.

Source of the Wood :
All furniture is made of different types of wood that may be classified as hard, soft or engineered. The kind of wood that is used is one of the factors that determine how long your furniture will last, and how it will fare as time goes by and it ages.
In general, quality furniture is made out of hard wood which comes from deciduous trees such as oak, maple, mahogany, teak, walnut, cherry and birch. The wood is air dried to remove all the moisture content in it before any work is carried out.
Coniferous trees such as pine, fir, redwood and cedar produce what is known as softwood. It is possible to find good quality furniture made from these kinds also, but since they are more prone to scratches and dents in comparison to hardwood they require more care.
This day, solid wood furniture has become something of the past. You may still be able to find it, purchase it, but it is more common to find furniture made of plywood or engineered wood. Engineered wood is not necessarily second rate, it provides strength while helping to prevent splitting or warping. It can make for sturdy, long lasting and highly attractive furniture when in the hands of a skilled craftsman.

CONSTRUCTION :
The way a piece is constructed can contribute to it’s beauty, functionality and how long the piece is to last. The joinery and sturdiness of a piece will tell you loads about it’s quality.
Mortise and tenon and dovetails are the two oldest ways of piecing furniture together, and also make for the strongest joints while being neat. Good joints may have dowels or screws, but will never be stapled. Any glue used will never show.
So what is it you should be looking for precisely?
Look for corner blocks that add strength and stability to the piece. They may not necessarily be visible from the outside, but bolt to both sides of interior corners.
A good quality desk or chest of drawers may have dust panels or thin sheets of wood between drawers in the body of a chest or desk. This not only makes them stronger structurally, but keep dust away from clothing or papers.
Back panels that face the wall are generally attached with screws to help ensure lateral stability. Backs and unexposed parts should be sanded smooth and well fitted.
Drawers should fit well and have glides to allow you to effortlessly move a drawer in and out of its station. They will also have stops to prevent a drawer from being pulled out or falling. Glides in office furniture such as desks, file cabinets and computer armories are important to the functionality of the piece. Doors should close neatly and be flush with the cabinet front, and the hardware should be of good quality.
Always test a piece of furniture for sturdiness by trying to rock or jostle the piece. It should not squeak, twist or wobble. Check if it is in level with the floor and if any angles are off.

FINISH :
Quality wood furniture will always have a good finish.. Sanding, staining and finishing are part of the process and neglect at any stage will affect the overall quality of the piece. Sanding is the first step in the finishing process, and a good piece will be smooth so that when you run your hand over it there will be no rough patches. Sanding across the wood grain will also produce unattractive results such as dark lines or scratches across the surface. Improperly sanded wood will not take the stain evenly. Inspect the finish from various angles to check for blotchiness or scratches.
A good stain enhances the natural beauty of wood while adding both colour and character to it. It can make one wood type look like another one, or make different woods look similar. High quality staining will be even, without any dark spots. All sides and ends should have the same tone.
Finish range from high-gloss to matte. A high quality finish is satiny smooth and free of rough spots, dust specks, or bubbles. Look for dept and richness in the finish, which comes from several light coats of finish with sanding in between coats. A high quality piece is finished on the back and on the underside as well to reduce the chances of swelling or shrinking.
So the next time your out to buy a piece of furniture, you should be well aware of what to look for in a piece of wooden furniture.

For more info log on to: http://www.naturalliving.co.in

 

 

Why wooden furniture was gifted in olden days?

In ancient times when the sages were aware of the vastu principles, they used to use them in day-to-day life as well. Vastu for them did not mean only the architecture part. It actually meant that they wanted balance of all the forces of nature in everything they did. Over a period of time, the vastu principles became a part of the culture and all actions done by even ordinary people were in line with vastu. Even the rulers had royal astrologers who would give the advice about these things.
One of the major areas of daily life is the giving and taking of gifts. Even in ancient times, this was prevalent. But it was limited in the sense that the availability of items in those times was limited and people used to lead a simple life.
But the gifts were of prescribed nature for specific occasions. Why? The reason is vastu. These prescribed things were gifted and were accepted, as they would change the pattern of energy and natural forces for the person taking them. Over a period of time these things became common and are even visible in the form of customary gifts for occasions. For example, in most of the cultures it is customary to gift clothes on the birth of a child. In olden days, wooden furniture was also gifted a lot more than these days. Wood if considered as energy – is constantly in motion, driven to grow and expand like the green shoots bursting forth in spring. The predominant energy and significance with wood, is being appreciated for being firmly grounded with deep roots at home. From this place of stability and strength, potential is unlimited, and the capacity to succeed against all odds. Color symbolisms of associations with wood are green and blue.
Converting this wood energy into a commercial plus usable design form, and forming a basic structure, like furniture, artifact, sculptures etc.
Wooden furniture items were and are still gifted by a many people but how do they affect the native is not known to many people.
Wood is ruled by Jupiter and as such gifting furniture will bring auspicious forces in the house and will bring prosperity and luck to the inmates of the house. Furniture made of wood suggests the influence of Jupiter and the furniture made of iron suggest the influence of Saturn. A combination of wood and iron is a lot common while making furniture with Sheesham wood. The craft-work is called ‘Jaali’ work. The craftsmanship that went into making of wooden furniture was always hand-made, which gave that personal touch to the idea of gifting.
Though, it’s said that the choice of furniture as a gift to someone must be done with consideration. Even if the study of feng shui is put aside, one needs to be alert of the toxins that reside within old furniture, such as leaked mercury in old clocks or formaldehyde glues in furniture made of layers of wood. Many of these hidden toxins can cause health problems. It is of utter importance that wooden furniture is always re-energized or if spoken in modern terms is always maintained nicely.
At present exchange of gifts in the society, specifically in India, is becoming an essential part of our relationship with others. There are occasions like marriage, birth days, festivals, housewarming etc – and there is no limit to the occasion to gift someone with a wooden piece of furniture, artifact or just a small box to hold the tiniest of your memory.
– By Natural Living

Exchange of gifts has been a normal phenomenon among the human beings from time immemorial. In ancient times, our rishis and munis were fully aware of the significance of the day-to-day activities of men and women and the way it could affect the entire balance of one’s life. Thus, even the giving of gifts can be determined by taking into consideration the planetary influences.
In the present day context, a planetary consideration on gifts can take on a priority over making a choice., What makes the process very complicated is making a choice of a proper gift.
There is an infinite variety of things available in the market. One can choose a gift of any color or of any price. In each category of gifts there are innumerable aspects. The general gifts include: furniture, cosmetics, clothes, sweets, jewellery, stationery items, electronic items and even property. Sometimes even flowers suffice.
39It has also been observed that certain gifts are being exchanged these days for no specific occasion. The person should be aware of the items which are being gifted. The person accepting them should also be careful these days as there are innumerable items which may not pass the test as gifts as per the canons of vastu. This has a strong correlation with astrology as well. Astrology also tells you the effects of various planets. The effects of natural forces of these planets affecting us decides our way of thinking and the way we work in society. This is unique to every individual. Hence, this aspect must be given due consideration while selecting and taking gifts. An item rejected by one is liked by the other is an indication that different forces operate for different people.

Wooden Furniture Market.

International wood industry is becoming complex and interesting at a growing pace. This industry has come to limelight only over the last decade, due to a number of revolutionary reasons like – globalization, production assortment and development in technology.
Major countries which increase their economic growth in wood industry are China, Thailand, Indonesia, India, Europe and America. Europe and America are the continents that compete with Asia – because of the abundance of wood in Asia and also because it is available at a cheaper rate.
These furniture industries have shown incredible economic growth rate recently, for a lot many reasons. Europe – has responded to this competition by enhancing productivity, targeting only the niche market, bringing in a lot of creativity in the design structure and in craftsmanship, in the quality of the product and with new ways of marketing strategies to create demand for them.
Though the level of skills involved is not as sophisticated as in craft works. The development of craft skills is essential for the survival of European furniture industry. Craft skills are necessary to produce high quality, intricate furniture items based on solid wood.

craftmanship-wood1These craftsmanship skills, if considered from an Asian country’s point of you, especially India – the markets are filled with highly skilled labor market. Cheap labor producing high quality sheesham wood furniture, from normal furniture to intensively detailed wooden carving work with antique style in furniture. Cities like Jodhpur, Rajasthan – become the pioneer cities for producing furniture, which showcase beautiful artistic craftsmanship, and all of that is done handmade.
These skills in European countries are mainly computer operated numerically controlled machines, which might give that precise symmetrically patterns but lack the innovation in intricate carving designs and patterns, which is typically an art form developed in Asian countries, especially India, China, Indonesia and Thailand.
Demand for such wooden hand-crafted furniture has increased a lot over the last decade in European and other countries, especially because of the detail carving and craftsmanship that goes in the manufacture of those antique looking wooden furniture.
Craftsmanship is an art that is embedded in the bloods of Indian workers, while this process is a much programmed process outside Asian countries.
Other than the best features like durability, sustainability in all kinds of weather and the fact that it is so beautiful aesthetically speaking – the demand for sheesham furniture has increased in European market, and even in Indian market because of the abundance in sheesham wood in these countries. The labor cost that goes into the production of such hand-crafted furniture is cheap and affordable.
That becomes an important factor while importing sheesham furniture for these foreign countries than spending thousands and million in a training program to acquire those craftsmanship skills, which anyway is an effort for these countries to make the younger crowd understand the importance of wood, wooden furniture and craftsmanship.
Regal exports have been one of the major brands to export hardwood (sheesham) furniture to European countries. With stores all over India, including Jodhpur, Goa, Pune it has seen a tremendous growth in the economies of scale. Being located in a country (India) where Sheesham wood grows in abundance and the craft skills are drunk to perfection, it has become one of the biggest online stores to export Sheesham wood furniture to European countries. Regal Exports also – provides custom designed furniture too, with beautiful craft work which is completely hand done.
This personal touch to the furniture is becoming a trending demand in foreign countries.
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Benefits of Sheesham Wood

Benefits of Sheesham Hardwood.
Sheesham hardwood
Sheesham, or scientifically known as Dalbergia Sissoo, the mostly famous for being used in making furniture. It is the most useful timber source in India.

Found throughout the sub-Himalayan region, from the Indus to Assam. Sheesham, Shishan, Shisham, Sissoo or Sisu, the tree is also found in many parts of India, especially in the Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and Assam.
Large quantities of the Sheesham timber are available from Uttar Pradesh and the Punjab.

The Sheesham wood is described as golden brown to deep brown in colour, with darker streaks that give the wood an attractive appearance.
• The wood is hard with a uniform and medium coarse texture. It has a good natural resistance to decay and is considered to be a popular carving and engraving wood in India.
• Sheesham lends itself perfectly to the cabinet making industry as it seasons well and does not warp or split.
• It is extremely durable and is one of the timbers least susceptible to dry-wood termites. The wood offers resistance to sawing and cutting but is excellent for turnery, takes a good polish and finishes to a smooth surface.
• Each piece of Sheesham furniture will have a unique colouring, thanks to the well defined grain of the wood, which can be brought to a fine finish by hand waxing.
• Sheesham furniture often features hand forged wrought iron work, known as Jali ironwork.
• As well as high quality furniture, Sheesham is also used for marine and aircraft grade plywood, charcoal for heating and cooking, musical instruments, ornamental turnery, carving, engraving, tool handles and sporting goods.
• Its root wood is used for tobacco pipes. In village industry Dalbergia sissoo (sheesham) is popular for doors and windows. Sheesham makes the perfect space for Antique Furniture.
• The wood takes a good polish and finishes to a smooth lustre.
• The beautiful natural patterns make for an enchanting finish to enjoy in your home
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Why Sheesham hardwood-

The wood has a rich chestnut colour and is ideally suited for making furniture due to its hard nature and close grain that polishes well and finishes to a smooth surface. As a natural material each piece of Sheesham timber has individual markings and characteristics resulting in every item of furniture being totally unique.
It is strong, durable and beautiful.If you want a smooth finished wood with natural marking in a chestnut colour, sheesham wood should be your choice.You’ll be pleased with the life you’ll get with them, so you can enjoy them for decades.

Gifts are forever – WoodenFurniture this festive season

Be it a festive season or someone in your life who means so much to you that the whole year goes by as a festival. A gift is always a way of expressing what you feel for that person/family.
From a simple hand written card to a very expensive car- whatever it maybe, when its give from your heart it’ll always means the world to that certain person

This entry is particularly based on gifts and why wooden furniture would make that perfect gift for anyone you would like to offer a gift.

Speaking qualitatively, Wood as a part of the nature, is the most pure form of article present on earth.
Relate it with the relationship you have with that one person/family- pure and wholesome.

Crafting the wood into a beautiful piece of furniture or artifact- the process is similar to what you practice while nourishing your relationship. A delicate crafting with firm attention is given in producing wooden furniture. Similarly focusing on the relationship you have there is that delicate yet firm attention given to it.

Hardwood furniture, like Rosewood ( Sheesham ), Teakwood have a life capacity that can lost for as long as 6 generations, which in itself talks for itself. Wooden furniture becomes one of the most royal and precious collection that can be passed on for generation.
Rosewood ( Sheesham ) Hardwood Furniture

Moreover, it can also become a great investment option- because if the quality of wood is proper solid wood- that is if its not veneered or bonded with softwood, then it can essentially last forever. Giving a piece of wooden furniture or even an artifact to person who is going to remain important forever in your life, will say the right thing. (Maybe someday- that will ‘piece of forever’ can save his/her life, and its almost as valuable as diamonds!)

Not a big fan of change, or if you know someone who is not a big fan of change- giving wooden furniture makes the best sense. Only efforts needed are choosing the right kind of wood and the work done on it. Speaking from the current trends, wooden furniture does not run out of fashion ever. (at least in the furniture department.)

And mentioned in the previous blog on how to remove the stains from the wooden furniture you can always make the whole procedure of cleaning up the furniture a ‘family’ event! There’s a lot of time given while refinishing wooden furniture- but you can do it at home, so that becomes the best part about having wooden furniture. Quality time can be spent.

Overall attaching emotional as well as practical sentiments to wooden furniture and then gift wrapping it, the process will make the furniture come to life.

http://www.naturalliving.co.in

How to remove scratches from Wooden Furniture

Wooden Furniture is the most expensive kind of furniture to have for home. They are so delicately carved that even a tiny bit of scratch on them and your heart is almost in your throat. And we can only imagine if you have a pet in at your place (not cats we presume, the scratchers that they are!)

But, here we are with simple steps to remove these scratches if they happen. You may need a lot of patience and a couple of more things like Sand paper, wax, polyurethane or shellac, etc.

Getting step wise, The first method needs fine sandpaper and loads of patience. The sanding itself isn’t a big job; you simply rub with care over the length of the scratch, moving in line with the wood grain. The time-consuming part is that you need to re-varnish, paint, or wax the area to get back to a uniform colour, which is where your patience will come in.

Typically during manufacture, varnish, polyurethane, or shellac is applied to wood to protect the surface. Applying wax or polish protects the manufacturer’s finish and helps to reduce surface scratches. Wax provides a hard finish and long-lasting protection, doesn’t smear, and is more durable than sprays or polishes. Use paste wax or liquid wax made specifically for furniture. Depending on use, paste wax finishes may last as long as two years. Liquid wax is easier to apply but leaves a thinner coating; it may need to be applied more frequently than paste wax. Learn how to properly apply waxes to eliminate streaks or a cloudy appearance. Always apply wax in light coats, rubbing into the surface with the grain. Allow to dry and buff to a clear shine with a soft cloth.
Remove_scratches_woodenFurniture
Tips for Applying Paste Wax

· Put a spoonful of wax, about the size of a golf ball, in a square of 100-percent-cotton fabric. Wrap the fabric around the wax ball and knead it until soft.

· Rub in a circular motion, one small area at a time, until the waxing is complete.

· When the surface dulls, wipe off the excess wax. Use a clean, soft cotton cloth and turn it frequently.

· Repeat waxing and wiping until the entire piece is waxed. If you notice a streak, keep wiping to remove excess wax.

· Polish the wood, with a soft cloth or lamb’s-wool pad attached to an electric drill or power buffer. If the wax smears, wipe with a soft cloth and continue buffing.

· For a deep shine, apply a second coat of wax in the same manner; to maintain waxed furniture, dust with a lamb’s-wool duster. Never use liquid or aerosol furniture polishes because they can dissolve the wax and leave a hazy film.
So, for everyday wood and wood-effect furniture, you may want to take a short cut and simply cover up the scratch. Ideally, use wood stain or a coloured polish that matches your furniture. Apply the solution to a soft cloth, and then work it into the wood. If you can’t get a colour match, use a wax crayon. Most children’s ranges have a tremendous variety of browns – and these duller shades always kick about in pencil cases after the snazzy reds have long gone. To fix scratches in leather, again use wax crayons. This is effective for both bags and shoes, and can work as a last resort for coats. Polish afterwards with a soft cloth to remove loose wax.
Scratches in plastic are less easy. It is worth trying a light oil such as WD-40 on white appliance scratches, such as fridges and washing machines. However, on white plastics that have a natural matte finish, doing nothing brings a solution of some sort. Scratching shows up most obviously on surfaces that are highly polished. As your items ages, scratches blend in.Repaint over scratches in paint. Simply paint over the scratch and then, just before the paint has dried, take a damp cloth and blend the edges of the new paint in with the original paint to avoid any tell-tale lines.

http://www.naturalliving.co.in