© Copyright, GTA Furniture Central 2013-2019. All rights reserved.

For more great

products, visit our

sister sites

Choosing Furniture 101

“The bitterness of poor quality remains long after low pricing is forgotten!”

                                                                         -        Leon M. Cautillo

When choosing home furniture it is important to realize that investing a little more money in high quality products now will save you thousands of dollars in the long term.

In the following paragraphs we will do our best to inform you what to look for to determine the quality level of your purchases.

Dressers, wardrobes, nightstands, end tables, desks, etc. These are all products that should be made in Canada with real Canadian solid wood. There are far too many places today that use pressboard, MDF, particleboard, engineered wood (or whatever other name they wish to use) instead of real wood to make less expensive products. These materials WILL NOT hold wood screws (or in most cases staples) properly, leading to furniture pieces that will become wobbly and eventually collapse, unfortunately in some cases with less than two years of use. Ask anyone who has ever dealt with any water damage how quickly furniture made from these materials becomes totally destroyed by liquids.

There are also many places selling solid wood furniture imported from Brazil, Malaysia, Vietnam, etc. instead of Canada because it's cheaper. You should know that woods from countries with dryer climates will swell in our Canadian climate leading to drawers and doors that won't open or close properly. Woods from moister climates will dry out and are much more likely to crack in our country. There is NEVER a substitute for purchasing Canadian made, quality solid wood furniture if you want it to last and perform properly.

The next time you see furniture pieces put out to the curb on refuse day in your neighbourhood, take notice of the materials they were constructed with. IT WILL NEVER BE SOLID WOOD! People who invest in solid wood furniture keep it for a lifetime, often handing it down to children or grandchildren when they no longer need it.  

Dining tables, dinettes, and dining chairs: OK folks, we can't say it enough. Canadian made, with Canadian wood, is always preferable in home furniture construction for the reasons listed above. There are some decent quality sets constructed with metal table legs and chair legs, and both wood and metal style tables which use glass tops. When choosing metal chairs and table bases, it is important to note how the metal is welded. Will the chairs stand up to the daily routine of pulling the chair in and out from the table, and the weight of heavier guests sitting on them? Will the table base hold the weight of a good quality glass top and all of the items you will place on it? Glass tops should always be a minimum of 8mm. thick and use tempered glass for durability and shatter resistance.

Sofas, sectionals and sofa groupings: When shopping for these items it is important to look deeper than the fabric they are covered with. At first glance many sofas may look like they are good quality, but are constructed with very poor framing, or use substandard hardware for reclining models. What good is saving money on these items, only to have them no longer recline, or be propped up by books when the frame collapses? 

Notice the middle of the frame on this sofa.                                                                       Although the fabric still looks good, the sofa itself is now garbage.

Occasional tables, entertainment centers, bookcases, etc.: Much the same ideas apply to occasional tables as outlined above for dining furniture. Real Canadian solid wood is always preferable, but the use of metal and glass in these designs is fine as long as they are well built, with good quality materials and construction techniques.

We sincerely hope we have given you the basics of what to look for when purchasing home furnishings. If you have any questions please drop by the showroom or contact us by phone or email. We will be happy to answer them for you.