Mennonite furniture as the name suggests, is furniture made by the Mennonites, people of the Mennonite faith. People also refer to this type of wood furniture as Amish furniture. The second thing to note about this type of furniture is that they are solid wood. In general, solid wood furniture simply means that all the visible parts are made from hard or softwood. Common woods the Mennonites use are cherry, maple, oak and hickory.
Part of the appeal of this type of furniture is the simplicity of the pieces. People tend to love the reminder of a bygone time when people preferred a simpler life. Another reason to buy them is that no two pieces will ever be exactly the same even if they have the same basic design. The grain of the wood for instance, will be different, giving the finish a different look and feel.
Good Reasons to Buy Mennonite Furniture
Apart from the fact that these pieces feature appealing designs, there are many other good reasons why Mennonite furniture is a good buy. Some of these are:
- Quality wooden furniture is durable and will last for years. If properly cared for they can even last generations.
- Some of the pieces are highly valuable
- The finish tends to be very attractive
- They are generally handmade furniture built by master cabinetmakers who pride themselves on creating the best pieces possible
- They are easy to care for and scratches or nicks can generally be repaired by getting the piece polished
How to Buy Mennonite Furniture
As with buying any other type of wood furniture, there are certain standard things to check before buying any piece of Mennonite furniture. These include the following:
- Look for wood grain patterns at the seams or ends where pieces meet. Solid wood furniture normally has these grains visible. Veneer or other manmade material such as particle board normally has the ends covered with finishing material.
- Check the item for any signs of warping or twisting
- Check if the joints are loose or show signs of slackening when the piece is lifted or shifted slightly
- Look at the undersides of the pieces to see if it there is any damage or if the finish is poorly done
- Run your hands over the surface of the furniture to make sure there are no dents or other signs of damage. Of course, knots in the wood are not often viewed as faults, but rather part of the allure and what makes that piece of furniture different.
Caring for Mennonite Furniture
It is important to care for your solid wood furniture, to preserve not only its look and value, but also its durability. A damp cloth should be used to wipe the surfaces of the solid wood furniture. Either water or vinegar can be used to dampen the rag. If dusting is all that is necessary, then a dry rag can be used. Never use furniture polish on solid wood furniture as the liquid will remove the furniture’s finish over time. This can lead to damage or the development of unsightly stains.
Mennonite adds class to any setting, and the right piece can make any room look special. The different color stains and varnishes used to give wood furniture a finished look means that you will always be able to find the right piece for any room. The versatility of wood furniture makes interior decorating easy. They can suit a modern setting, and the right pieces can transform a room into an 18th century masterpiece. In spite of the many options available, before making a purchase, make sure that the store has a return policy.