This Article is About
furniture
new furniture
thin sheet
embarrassment
little girl
glue
Furniture May Not Be What It Seems
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Ahh, buying new furniture. It seems like such a good idea, but do you really understand what you are looking for and what you will end up with? Having a great deal of experience dealing with all sorts of furniture that needs TLC or refinishing, I can tell you that many times people are severely disappointed in what they bought when they are told at the repair or refinishing shop there is no real wood involved in the making of their furniture - and the possibility of making it look 'like new' would take a miracle.

So you bought that new, solid white bedroom suit for your little girl's room, and the leg of the bed now has a nasty crack in it. Oh, and the finish is starting to peel a little on the top of the dresser. But what do you expect, it's been seven years since you brought it home from the showroom. You paid a great deal of money for it so why not get it repaired, and since she will be keeping it a while longer, why don't you just get it refinished - maybe take it back to the real wood stained finish. After all, the salesman DID tell you that it was solid oak, right?

Here's the deal. You can take it to the furniture fixit/refinish shop, but don't be surprised if they tell you it can't be done. Don't get mad at the messenger. He is NOT the one that made you buy it, right?

That darling poster bed turns out to have been made of pressed, glued cardboard, the finish a thin sheet of painted paper covering that has been lacquered to look like it has an actual woodgrain. The dresser that is so heavy it must be real wood? Plywood with veneer, and the top itself is pressed paper, with enough glue holding it together that it makes it heavier than wood. But you might get lucky. It may be a jungle wood that will soon dry out, crack and become misshapen to the point of embarrassment. Just because the salesman tells you it is wood, don't take his word for it. In either case the furniture you now possess will probably NOT be a family heirloom to pass down from generation to generation.

The moral of this story? Educate yourself on what you are buying before you fall in love with the look and sign on the dotted line. Most real, solid wood furniture pieces will not be painted or hidden with heavy coats of black lacquer. Check underneath, look inside and out to make sure you are getting what you really want. Check out the inside of the drawers, see that same furniture in an unfinished version, if possible, and when you DO believe you have the real deal, make sure it ends up in writing!

Pay a little more, if necessary, so that when you decide to pass the furniture to the next generation it will still be as solid as it was when you bought it. You will find it cheaper in the long run since you won't be having to replace your furniture every few years. When in doubt, call someone that knows about furniture to make sure you remain happy with your long term investment.


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