Amish furniture is any furniture that is made by the Amish community. One thing about Amish furniture is that it is made primarily using traditional methods.
The Amish are known for creating furniture using solid wood and incorporating beautiful and simple designs. In a world where plastic and wood veneer has taken over, Amish furniture is a welcome breath of fresh air.
Amish furniture promises durability, high quality, craftsmanship, and ease of blending in with other furniture due to their neutral tones.
The Amish people are known for shunning technology, and one might wonder how they manage to produce such impeccable furniture without the use of technology.
The answer is that they are strictly selective on what technology they incorporate in their community and tend to use technology that doesn't harm their community.
Therefore, they tend to use a dash of technology in their woodwork which makes work easier.
Do Amish Furniture Makers use wood substitutes?
For centuries ago, Amish furniture was made with the intent that it would stand the test of time and be passed down from generation to generation.
For this reason, the Amish never use wood substitutes that are cheap and substandard such as MDF. For the Amish, quality and durability should not be compromised when making furniture, and most wood substitutes may be cheap but are neither high quality nor durable.
Most Amish furniture makers tend to source their wood locally, where quality can be guaranteed.
These craftsmen's preferred wood types include cherry, red and white oak, brown maple, and hickory. Also, there is a certain aesthetic that can only be achieved by real wood, which is what most Amish furniture makers go for.
In a nutshell, the Amish only use authentic wood to make their furniture and never use wood substitutes to guarantee the durability of their products.
Do they use power tools?
It is a well-known fact that the Amish tend to avoid using technology such as electricity and telephones during their day-to-day lives.
Like any other furniture maker, the Amish use everyday woodwork tools such as hammers, hand planes, and chisels.
However, they are not limited to hand tools only; they tend to use their version of power tools called pneumatic tools.
These pneumatic tools are compressor-powered, meaning they use compressed air instead of electricity to power them up.
Diesel engines fuel the compressor-powered tools as opposed to electricity. These tools help them with precision and saving time while also maintaining their religious beliefs on the use of technology and its effects on the environment and their community.
It is common place to find pneumatic tools such as buffers and sanders in the tool collection of an Amish furniture maker.
Do they use nails and screws?
The Amish do not use nails and screws for joinery when making furniture. Joinery is an art used to make wooden joints, and in modern furniture, it is mostly done using nails, screws, and adhesive glue.
The Amish have perfected their joinery skills such that they don't use screws and nails mainly because traditional joinery techniques using non-toxic wood glue are more durable and reduce the need for powered tools.
The techniques commonly used by the Amish include rabbets, mortise-and-tenon joinery, and dovetails. Some of these techniques require adhesive for it to be long-lasting hence the use of non-toxic adhesive.
Using traditional joinery techniques delivers seamless furniture that represents the attention to detail of the furniture maker.
Do they mark their furniture?
Humility is one of the cornerstones of Amish beliefs, and anything that would call attention to an individual and cause them to have pride is shunned away; this is the same for Amish furniture.
An Amish furniture maker is not allowed to leave a mark on the furniture they make, so there is no way to know which furniture was made by who.
However, it is quite easy to identify Amish furniture through telltale signs such as traditional wood making styles, type of wood used, and hand-finished solid wood pieces.
Amish furniture cannot be traced back to the crafter since they are not allowed to take credit for their work as this would be a good source of pride.
This is another thing that shows the Amish sense of community in that the whole community should take validation for great furniture art pieces instead of an individual as it is in the rest of the world.
Is Amish furniture considered Sustainable?
The Amish are very environmentally conscious people and this is reflected in their furniture making practices.
The wood used in making the Amish furniture is harvested sustainably with no clear-cutting of large portions of hardwood forests, leading to high levels of erosion. Also, only the mature trees are selectively cut down, and also planting of tree seedlings is done to maintain a healthy supply of hardwood.
Secondly, all Amish furniture is made in America, which reduces the cost and environmental implications of ferrying furniture products across the globe.
The furniture is made from wood and is pretty durable, which means that it takes long to be disposed of, and when it is disposed, it is biodegradable compared to wood substitutes that use resin which is difficult to biodegrade.
The furniture also doesn't take up storage space since most products are made on order, and the products used, such as the adhesive, are non-toxic and environmentally friendly.
Therefore, it is safe to say that Amish furniture is sustainable and environmentally friendly compared to modern furniture.
How much does an Amish chair cost?
As previously stated, Amish furniture guarantees great quality and durability, which is reflected in the cost of Amish furniture.
An Amish chair can cost anywhere from $250 to upwards of $10,000, depending on size, quality, style, and other factors such as labor.
One thing that distinguishes Amish furniture is that it prioritizes quality over quantity, which means that it is made from the highest quality material and is all handmade.
A dining table set can cost anywhere from $1200 to %15,000 also, depending on a variety of factors. When one thinks of acquiring high quality, durable, and sustainable furniture, one should think of Amish furniture since it guarantees all these and much more.
The internet has made it easier for non-Amish people to access Amish furniture, which has somewhat driven the prices since there is increased demand for Amish furniture.
Like what many salespeople say, there is something for everyone, and this is also true when it comes to Amish furniture.
Depending on the budget, there is always something that anyone can get when they want to purchase Amish furniture.
Is Amish furniture made by the Amish?
Most Amish furniture is made by the Amish communities in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Indiana. However, this is not to say that counterfeit Amish furniture is not available in the market today.
The internet and mass production era has made it easy to counterfeit almost anything on the face of the earth, and this is the same when it comes to Amish furniture.
That being said, there are a few markers to look out for to ensure the authenticity of Amish furniture. The choice of wood, techniques used, style of furniture, and technology used on a piece of furniture can tell whether the piece of furniture is authentically Amish or not.
The Amish mostly use hard wood timber without flaws, and they don't use nails and screws for joinery but use ancient joinery techniques.
Also, the Amish furniture has very particular furniture styles, with the mission style being the most popular for its modern and cleaner look.
Finally, the Amish use very limited technology in their furniture making, which is clear in the finished product. These are the four ways that one can tell the authenticity of the Amish furniture.
Why is Amish furniture so expensive?
The high prices associated with Amish furniture can be attributed to various reasons. First, it takes a very great skill level and craftsmanship for an Amish furniture maker to make great quality furniture, and this skill level and craftsmanship takes to learn.
Secondly, the Amish require meticulous attention to detail to be able to produce quality and durable material, which means a lot of time is invested in completing each single furniture piece.
Also, the Amish use hardwood to make their furniture which guarantees durability, and hardwood is very expensive compared to wood alternatives such as MDF.
Amish furniture is not mass produced like other furniture, and this means that each piece is handmade without the use of power tools which translates to a lot of time and effort, which is automatically going to cost more.
Overall, the cost of labor that goes into each furniture piece accounts for the largest percentage of the total cost of each piece of art that is Amish furniture.