Buying Solid Wood Furniture Made in the USA - Why it MattersBy Bailiegh Basham · June 4, 2022
There are a number of factors to weigh when choosing your next piece of furniture—decor style, brand reputation, pricing, etc. It would be wise for consumers to add one more consideration to this list: whether or not the solid wood furniture is made in the USA. While some benefits may seem obvious, others may surprise you.
What Does “USA-Made” Even Mean in Regards to Furniture
Unfortunately, some furniture manufacturers treat “USA-made” as a marketing ploy rather than an actual business practice. In fact, the FTC even created a law in 2021 to prevent companies from using loopholes to justify the misleading use of this phrase. Why was this necessary? Because many manufacturers will only have the last, superficial leg of the building process completed in the USA while the remainder of the construction happens overseas.
So what steps can you take to ensure that your next real wood furniture purchase is actually USA-made? Firstly, look at the website and see how much transparency they provide about the furniture-making process. If what they produce is of quality (and made in America), they should be proud of the building practices rather than secretive. Be particularly suspicious of corporations that would have international business connections and produce furniture at a large enough scale to justify shipping expenses.
Next, be wary of any rates that appear “too good to be true.” USA-made solid wood furniture is traditionally considered quite valuable. If the prices aren’t reflective of this quality, you’re probably peddled internationally-made knock-offs using subpar materials like veneer.
Not every company that proudly declares that their solid wood furniture is made in the USA is pulling the wool over your eyes. There are plenty (Countryside Amish Furniture, included) that source their hardwood from North America, hire American workers, and operate exclusively within USA-based workshops.
Why Bother Buy Solid Wood Furniture Made in the USA
Higher Manufacturing Standards and Greater Transparency
Think about why American brands choose to manufacture furniture outside of the USA. More often than not, it’s because the materials and processes are cheaper, despite the added shipping expenses. Unfortunately, cheaper costs often mean corners are cut regarding quality control, sourced materials, and working conditions.
USA-Made, Real Wood Furniture is the More Eco-Friendly Choice
A number of different elements factor into a furniture piece’s level of eco-friendliness, from the source of materials to utilized chemicals to the transportation of goods. While we can’t make a blanket statement that all American furniture is more eco-friendly than their multi-national counterparts, we can point out the following:
- Factories and workshops are more likely to employ green practices. While the USA doesn’t take the crown for the most environmentally-friendly country, it does enforce higher standards than those found in common manufacturing hubs. This often means no usage of harmful chemicals directly incorporated into the furniture and less emissions that pollute the environment.
- Shipping American-made furniture utilizes less fuel - When you buy from a credible American company like Countryside Amish Furniture, shipping from the US-based workshop to your home emits fewer greenhouse gasses than if the same piece was brought from overseas. This is especially true for USA-made hardwood furniture, as real wood is naturally heavier than cheaper imitations.
- Responsible harvesting of hardwood. The gravely endangered Amazon Rainforest continues to disappear at alarmingly accelerated rates. The reasons are many, from clearing land for farming to global warming. One of those reasons could very well be the furniture in your own home! Reuters recently reported how there exist hundreds of Brazilian logging companies that illegally harvest and sell the wood to manufacturers. Therefore, you want to shop with American furniture companies that harvest less-endangered North American timber (though keep in mind that, even if a company is based in the USA, its wood source may not be). Popular local hardwoods used in USA-made furniture include oak, cherry, elm, maple, hickory, maple, and cedar. Always inquire when shopping for real wood furniture; illegally harvested lumber makes it way into many manufacturers’ workshops, including Ikea’s.
By purchasing USA-made, solid wood furniture, you help to ensure jobs related to every step of the furniture’s journey, from the logging team to the furniture makers to the support staff to the delivery personnel. In turn, these Americans can continue to spend money on local goods and services.
Supporting Safe Working Conditions
Your support for American workers goes beyond merely sustaining their employment. When you purchase solid wood furniture made in the USA, you can rest assured that you support fair wages and safe work conditions often not present in overseas factories.
Adherence to American Safety Standards for Furniture
Did you know that the U.S. Department of Commerce has detailed safety regulations for American furniture manufacturers detailed in a 36-page document? Its detailed criteria covers every topic imaginable, from limiting formaldehyde in wood furniture to the maximum angle of a rocker for optimally supporting a baby’s neck.
When you order wood furniture from countries that have lax standards, you can’t guarantee the same baseline quality and peace of mind.
Leather That is Healthier for Both You and Workers
Putting wood aside for a moment, USA-made furniture is more likely to have nontoxic leather. Understand that it's a common practice in some countries to treat leathers with harmful chemicals and dyes that can increase the likelihood of cancer among everyone who comes in contact (you can read about it here). Buying American-made furniture doesn’t guarantee chemical-free leather, but it increases the likelihood of foregoing the worse offenders (rest assured that Countryside Amish Furniture uses premium leather of the highest quality free from all harmful chemicals.
Keeping Great American Furniture-Making Traditions Alive
The Amish, a staple of American culture, are widely respected for their furniture-making talents. Using skills passed down from one generation to the next, they hand make each piece using basic equipment and their keen eye for details. The results are beautiful solid wood furniture durable enough to withstand decades of use.
When you buy American wooden furniture, you support skilled artisans that perfected their craft rather than a series of detached machines.
Popular North American Hardwoods for USA-Made Furniture - Oak, Cherry, and More
Solid Oak Wood Furniture
Real oak is a classic amongst made-in-USA furniture, and for good reason. Despite being comparatively more affordable than other American hardwoods, it still is quite hardy and receptive to diverse stains.
Keep in mind, there are multiple species of Oak that generally fall into two categories: red and white. Much like their names suggest, the former has warmer undertones while the latter tends to have a cooler tint. Additionally, white is generally smoother and more durable than its red counterpart, making it slightly more costly.
Solid Cherry Furniture
Smooth, warm cherry wood has become a staple of American solid wood furniture. Its medium density makes it resilient against everyday bumps and dings, yet also easy to carve and shape to yield lovely results. Furniture Makers and shoppers alike appreciate its natural reddish tints that look lovely under clear or subdued finishes. As a bonus, cherry wood shifts in tone overtime to bring out new, attractive dimensions of this Eastern-US wood.
To learn more, check out our guide to cherry wood furniture or peruse our favorite furniture in real cherry wood, all made in the USA. Common picks include:
- Cherry wood bedroom sets and bed frames
- Cherry wood bookcases
- Cherry wood office furniture
- Cherry wood dining tables and chairs
Solid Maple Furniture
One of the hardest wood options for USA-made furniture, solid maple is a popular choice for furniture pieces that receive non-stop use (like your dining room table). Frequently harvested in Northern US regions like New England, it tends to have a subtle, consistent texture that adds to its inherent elegance.
Explore the many possibilities with our selections of furniture in Brown Maple wood.
This is by no means the only North American woods offered by Countryside Amish Furniture. Our USA-made pieces can be customized in plenty of other options, from reclaimed barn wood to hickory to walnut. We encourage you to check out the available options for the specific real wood furniture that interests you or ask our US-based support team.
Examples of Furniture Styles Born in the USA
Much like American culture itself, furniture styles don’t materialize from thin air. They pull inspiration from other countries, world events, and societal shifts. However, the below wood furniture themes have significant American roots that continue to be popular amongst shoppers, today.
Shaker Style Furniture - Born in the NorthEast USA by 1700s Quaker woodworkers, this furniture style emphasizes clean, simple lines that serve the piece’s underpinning purpose rather than decoration. Though Shaker furniture represents one of the older USA-based traditional styles, its beautiful minimalism can fit in seamlessly with a contemporary space.
Mission Style Furniture - Mission furniture shares many similarities with Shaker wooden furniture: they’re both USA-based, value simplicity, and prefer to display the natural grain of classic American hardwoods. However, they have their differences. Mission style originated much later than Shaker furniture, taking hold in the early 1900s as a rebellion against overly ornate pieces or soullessly manufactured furniture. Mission furniture tends to be heavier than lithe shaker designs and uses straighter lines compared to shaker’s curves.
Mid-Century Furniture - The seed of mid-century style was planted in the 1930s and gradually sprouted over the decades, coming into its own in the 1960s and overtaking America’s imagination in the 1980s. Influenced by Nordic and German design, this iconic American furniture embraces unnatural colors and smooth lines that form eye-catching silhouettes. North American hardwood is still a staple of this furniture movement, but it also embraced a broader diversity of textiles.
Farmhouse Furniture - Pinpointing the origins of farmhouse decor is quite tricky for obvious reasons. However, the concept of modern farmhouse as a well-crafted design theme gained in popularity in the 1990s and 2000s thanks to popular American television shows. So how do you buy USA-made furniture to achieve this look? Look for pieces that honor the wood’s natural hue and texture (like a reclaimed dining room set). Generally, colors should be soft; if using bold pops or unnatural materials like metal, do so sparingly as accents.
Examples of American-Made Furniture For Your Living Room
Countryside Amish Furniture offers a broad array of American-made living room pieces, many sold both individually or as part of sets. More importantly, all of our made in the USA furniture utilizes real wood rather than manufactured imitations. The most commonly requested types include:
Browse our many Amish-made, wooden living room furniture sets.
Examples of American-Made Furniture For Your Bedroom
Personally, we think the bedroom is the ideal space for which to invest in solid wood furniture sourced from an American company. Not only will these pieces last years of regular use, but the natural warmth of wood will make the bedroom feel naturally more inviting. American-made bedroom furniture includes:
- Four poster beds
- Sleigh bed frame
- Wooden bed with storage
- Solid wood canopy bed
- Wood armoire
- Amish jewelry armoire
Browse our many real wood bedroom furniture sets.
Examples of American-Made Dining Room Sets Made From Solid Wood
The dining room table is the place at which extended families reconnect, holidays are celebrated, and everyday meals are held. So invest in a dining room furniture set made from solid North American wood! Explore our many US-made pieces including:
- Solid wood dining sets
- Amish-made dining tables
- Amish-made dining chairs
- Amish dining & kitchen chairs
- Solid wood free-standing cabinets
Contact Our US-Based Support Team With Any Questions
Our team is ready to answer all questions you may have about ordering products, our USA-made wooden furniture manufacturing processes, how we source the real wood we utilize, or what makes Amish furniture special. Contact us using the chat feature, call 888-297-455, or email us at email@example.com.