Heirloom Furniture: Hand-Me-Downs Your Kids Actually Want

heirloom furniture

Heirloom Furniture: Beauty and Craftsmanship to Pass On to the Next Generation

Nobody likes a hand me down. Growing up with an older sibling means years of getting their worn clothes and toys. However, finely-crafted, heirloom-quality furniture brings generations together. Furniture of this quality stands up to the tests of time and spans the decades of a family’s shared memories and common experiences. A quality piece of furniture is one hand-me-down everyone begs for.

Here are some of the factors that separate the furniture that is “made for today” versus furniture made “for making memories”:

The Materials

Solid woods — often hardwoods like cherry, oak and walnut — are the material of choice for fine furniture. Rarely, if ever, are faux wood, laminates, plastic, or veneers used. It is not uncommon for the boards and planks to be hand-selected by the craftsmen and carefully kiln-dried or air-dried before being made into furniture.

The Construction

You can see the attention to detail given to the construction of heirloom-quality furniture. The crafting of furniture of this quality still relies on time-honored techniques such as dovetail joints, pegged mortises and tenons, and half-laps. As one craftsman described it: the goal it to “make a piece that will survive as long as it takes for another 100 year old tree to grow [like the one from which the piece was made]”.

Note how the wood planks and pieces are assembled — adjoining planks should have grains running in the opposite direction of each other; as well as the lack of marks from carving and routing. Metal fasteners, screw and glue may be used to join disparate parts, but will be hidden from obvious sight. Curved pieces (chair backs, sofa legs, etc.) should show no cracks or wrinkles.

The Finish

Every piece of heirloom quality furniture has received multiple sandings throughout the process of its construction. This will bring out the beauty of the natural grain and allow the stain to absorb evenly. Proper sanding techniques guarantee that the stain will sink deeply into the wood and retain its beauty for the next generation. High-quality protective surface finishes will be evenly and thoroughly applied to prevent water and other types of damage.

The Craftsmen

The craftspeople who create heirloom-quality furniture are at the heart of the process. Most high-end furniture manufacturers have a small, well-trained workforce dedicated to creating pieces to be enjoyed in other homes and by other families for years to come.

Heirloom Furniture in Fort Wayne

When considering furniture options, please allow our helpful staff at Rainbow Furniture to show you the beautiful, high-quality furniture lines we are so proud to carry in our Fort Wayne furniture showroom. Not only will you find a beautiful piece of furniture to enhance your home, but you will be giving the gift of family memories to the next generation and beyond.

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