Wood veneering is a common practice in furniture and fixture making. Many items of furniture, flooring, doors and kitchen units in homes and workplaces are made with real wood veneers and often it’s done to such a high standard that it is difficult to know which are veneered and which are solid wood.
Wood veneering is not a new practice; it’s been used to strengthen wood, to improve flexibility and provide protection against wood warping in humid or hot conditions for many years.
Once seen as an inferior practice, wood veneering is now correctly viewed as an advanced method used to strengthen furniture and fixtures. It’s also an environmentally friendly way of utilising slow growing hardwoods, saving our precious resources and allowing forests to replenish. Good real wood veneers, far from being the cheaper, inferior option, can often be more expensive than solid wood. They’re usually much stronger and significantly lighter too.
What is a Natural Wood Veneer?
A natural wood veneer is a thin slice of wood that is glued onto a solid base, usually made from plywood or dense fibreboard. The glue used to fix veneers is waterproof and is the same glue that’s used in aircraft and marine construction work; therefore it’s incredibly strong. Real wood veneers can be found on everything from furniture, domestic fittings such as doors and flooring, commercial fittings like fire doors, office furniture and panelling.
The Kindest Way to Use Real Wood
Real wood veneers are made from all kinds of wood including oak, mahogany, maple and walnut. Many of these woods come from slow growing trees; particularly wood like oak and maple. Using this wood, and species such as mahogany that is grown in a few selected areas throughout the world, can put an enormous strain on global wood resources.
Using these precious woods for veneers, rather than for solid wood furniture or doors, can make the wood from one tree go much further. If more veneers were used, we would need to cut down less and less of these slow growing and exotic trees meaning less of a strain on our global wood resources. Real wood veneers as opposed to solid wood are undoubtedly the most environmentally friendly and sustainable option available.
Real Wood Veneers Create Beautiful and Unique Furniture
Wood merchants tend to cut any unique or interesting pieces of wood from a felled tree into veneers. Wood with lots of knots or burls is beautiful when it’s been cut into a thin veneer and polished. Real wood veneers can enhance a piece of furniture greatly and produce a truly unique finish. Solid wood doesn’t always utilise this natural beauty, as many of the interesting shapes are not visible.
Real wood veneers are growing in popularity as the natural choice for unique, strong and durable pieces of furniture and fittings. They’re undoubtedly the kindest choice for our environment too.