Every great room is not just a product of its style, layout or colour, the quality of furniture and its durability can make or break a room. That’s why Canadian-made furniture matters, it’s beautiful and made to last.
Globalization Changed the Canadian Furniture Industry
Up to about twenty-five years ago, fabric covered sofas and chairs were still largely made in
North America. But globalization put pressure on local manufacturers to take furniture-making off-shore in search of cheaper labor and materials. With the drop in quality, consumers have settled for disposable furnishings at a great cost.
Why Canadian-made is superior
Jane Lockhart Platinum with Gresham House.
Canadian-grown hard and softwood is excellent for producing not only goods like tables and bed frames, but it is also amazingly strong for building the interior structure of upholstered pieces. In addition, we have talented, experienced craftsmen and women with in-depth knowledge of furniture building.
Corner block reinforces and strengthens the corners.
Corner Block (courtesy of Christine Julian Interiors).
Dovetail joints resist separation at joints.
Dovetail joinery (courtesy of www.popularmechanics.com)
Hardwood frames for strength, durability.
Hardwood Frame (courtesy of Silva Custom Furniture)
Web and Coil Construction
Web and Coil construction for most supportive suspension system (courtesy of Silva Custom Furniture)
These are very important building techniques to the long term stability of upholstery. All are commonplace among good quality furniture-makers in Canada.
How do you know if a sofa is well-made?
There are several key things to look for in quality furniture.
- A solid hardwood frame. Particle board is not hardwood!
- High-grade foam (which costs a lot more than the cheap stuff). It’s important to the long term shape and ‘spring’ of seat cushions.
- Padding added to the sides of the arms and to the back. This ‘fills it out’ and helps with its look and overall comfort. Cheap sofas don’t have this…it feels like cardboard when you knock the side of the sofa.
- Webbing and springs also make a difference in how long a sofa will last.
The True Cost of Importing
Although that imported piece may seem like it cost less money, it has incurred transportation costs, duty costs, and sometimes more people have been paid than the cost of the actual materials. Low quality also means your furniture may not last long and end up in landfill—a huge cost to us all.
You Have A Larger Selection To Choose From
Contemporary Furnishings, Canadian-made.
When we purchase ‘made in Canada’, not only do we have more choice of sizes and materials, we often get better quality and better-constructed furniture. A piece made here means money is spent on materials and labor directly. Basically, you are getting more “furniture” for the money!
Keep Canadians Earning
Curved Sofa with exposed hardwood by Estate Interiors
Also, furniture made here employs Canadians and keeps our economy running. We may pay more for goods produced here but in the long run, it comes back to us. From workers in the forestry and timber businesses to the retail sector, manufacturing furniture in Canada keeps a lot of people employed.
Darn it, People Like Our Furniture
Curved Channel-backed sofa by Estate Interiors
Canadian designs, styles, and materials are often desired by other nations around the globe. Somehow we seem to think that if it’s made here, it’s just not as good as elsewhere in the world. Although we don’t have a long history like England, France or Italy of furniture design, building, and production, many of the people who work in these fields carry the knowledge of previous generations who have immigrated here.
Not only is Canada a great place to live, but we also make great furniture with great furniture makers! Let’s start to spend our loonies at home!