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Why Solid Wood Furniture Is the Better Choice For Your Home

Why Solid Wood Furniture Is the Better Choice For Your Home 0

Solid Wood VS Veneer Products

Here at Jaques Woodcraft we specialise in real, solid wood furniture built to last so we obviously have a bias towards solid wood but lets take a look and breakdown exactly why solid wood is a better choice than the cheaper counterparts - MDF, Chipboard/Particle board and Veneer systems.



This is an easy one, real wood is naturally beautiful - the look, the feel, the smell, just everything about it! Wood is not created in a factory and therefore no two pieces are the same.

With a little craft you can do almost anything with wood, take our Chestnut Cube Carved TV Unit for example. Meticulously carved drawer fronts give a unique 3d effect that is impossible to create with engineered sheet materials.

Chestnut Cube Carved TV Unit by Artisan Furniture

Engineered sheet materials can have a nice veneer finish when you first buy them new but it doesn't take an expert to tell they are not solid wood, and good luck trying to get this sort of unique 3d effect!

Plus - don't get me started on the issues that come after a few years of use, like the veneer and edging that inevitably start to peel away from the MDF or chipboard core!

Damage and repairs

One of the great qualities of solid wood furniture is the fact that if for example, over time your dining room table gets scratched up, you can spend a weekend and simply sand it down, and re-seal it then BAM it will look almost brand new again, good for another 10 years of use.

Sanding down and refinishing a dining room table

If you compare this attribute to a veneered chipboard table, once the veneer has been scratched there is little you can do to remove it, and over time these scratches accumulate making the furniture look tacky and cheap.

Also veneered products have the tendency to peel away from their substrate, or even chip and flake away. Once this starts to happen it can lead to a butterfly effect, pulling more and more away and unfortunately there is little you can do other than trying to re-glue what remains.

Veneer furniture peeling away

This is the heart-breaking part about veneered furniture, irreversible damage that only gets worse as it ages and unfortunately you are almost powerless to help it.

A good example of a solid wood dining room table is one our most popular pieces - The Extendable Butterfly Dining Table. A simple, clean design built from solid Mango Wood that doubles in size when extended.

Extendable Butterfly Dining Table by Artisan Furniture

Pros of Sheet Materials

Particle board sheets

Now, of course engineered sheet materials have their place in the home, you wouldn't build your entire kitchen, carcasses and all out of solid wood - this would be an enormous waste of beautiful natural wood and would triple the cost of the kitchen.

Engineered products are the more practical approach to large run cabinetry for example - a large kitchen that needs a white finish, just be sure to keep water and moisture away to prevent damage or edge peeling.

But when it comes to high use, freestanding display furniture solid wood is the best choice - even in the kitchen, for example our Double Butchers Block by Besp-Oak Furniture, built from solid Oak and packed with features like a dual removable chopping boards, 2 large drawers and 2 weaved basket storage boxes means food prep is a joy and not a chore!

Double Butchers Block by Besp-Oak Furniture


Solid Wood, MDF, Particle Board and Plywood:

Which to use and when? We breakdown the different uses 


  • ✔️Great for freestanding furniture
  • ✔️Great for high use surfaces that are prone to wear
  • ✔️Much harder than other materials
  • ✔️Scratches are repairable
  • ✔️Looks and feels much nicer than manufactured products
  • ✔️Much longer lifespan than manufactured products
  • ✔️Holds fixings much better - products don't "loosen" over time
  • ❌More expensive than engineered materials

    MDF CORE (veneered or painted finish)

    • ✔️Great for kitchen and wardrobe internal carcasses
    • ✔️Paints very well
    • ✔️Relatively stable if not exposed to damp or water
    • ❌Relatively soft material, prone to damage if high use surface
    • ❌Not recommended in bathroom or wet areas
    • ❌Not recommended for freestanding furniture
    • ❌Very heavy but much denser than chipboard/particle board
    • ❌Easily damaged by water - sucks in moisture and expands the material


      CHIPBOARD/PARTICLE BOARD (Veneered finish)

      • ✔️Light weight, (lighter than MDF core) ideal for cabinetry that is hung from walls etc
      • ✔️Economical - The cheapest sheet materials out there
      • ❌Prone to edge and veneer peeling
      • ❌Not very dense at all (lots of air in the material)
      • ❌Does not hold screws very well - furniture can "loosen up" over time
      • ❌Prone to water damage



        • ✔️Great for stability
        • ✔️Incredible strong when supported properly (great for sub-flooring)
        • ❌Prone to warping, not recommended for doors
        • ❌Internal layers are prone to delaminating and splitting
        • ❌Edges need to be either hidden, sanded then sealed, or edge banded


          We hope this has been an informative read for you and thanks for stopping by.

          • Daniel Jaques