Wood and Furniture Projects
If you haven’t read previous posts in this series let’s start here.
I ask about the color of furniture during the initial discussion with a customer to help me determine what species of wood to recommend. I like to match up the project color with the natural color of wood without staining if possible. For example, if someone is looking for a tan or light brown color, I suggest going with an oak. If they are looking for a darker color, I recommend black walnut or African mahogany. Unless a customer knows what type of wood they want, I recommend based on color, budget, and grain.
Maple is usually white to an off-white color with a smooth, straight grain (sapwood). There are four domestic hardwoods I work with the most and maple is right above red oak in price. Hard maple or also known as sugar maple is abundant in the Northeast which helps keep it at a competitive price. The wood tends to stain blotchy because of the density so more work is involved if you want an even finish. Maple is a very beautiful wood blotchy or not.
When I Recommend Maple
If you are looking for a natural creamy or white color with a smooth-looking grain or need a very hard wood species. Maple is a very hard and dense wood so I like it for table tops and cabinets among other things. There are figured maples such as birdseye or curly maple that give projects a unique look if that is something you are looking for, but they also tend to run a bit higher in price.
Differences between Hard and Soft Maple
“In tree form, hard maple is usually referred to as sugar maple and is the tree most often tapped for maple syrup. (It’s also the state in four different states in the US.) Also called rock maple, its wood may be fairly considered the king of the Acer genus. Its wood is stronger, stiffer, harder, and denser than all of the other species of maple commercially available in lumber form.” https://www.wood-database.com/hard_maple/
Examples of Furniture I Built with Maple
Other Posts in this Series
- Why I Love Red Oak (Part 1 of 5)
- Why I Love White Oak (Part 3 of 5)
- Why I Love Cherry (Part 4 of 5)
- Why I Love Black Walnut (Part 5 of 5)