Handmade Furniture vs. Mass Produced Furniture

If you asked, most people would say, if they could afford handmade furniture would be their first choice. Although the revolution in furniture architecture has brought about the use of cutting edge tools and equipments, handmade artifacts still hold a valued place in the furniture market especially as coveted collectibles.

But, with the increase in demand for furniture products in high numbers and low prices, the market has shifted towards machine made products. This not only includes a fast manufacturing process through high end machinery but involves the use of new materials like plastic, wrought iron etc. Also the extravagant bulky patterns have been replaced by clean lines and lightweight designs. Nowadays furniture is designed to fit small apartments or rooms rather than large sprawling spaces. Modern furniture is airy; light has a suitable size and is crafted with an aim to make the piece versatile.

However, there are various other aspects than just the “what” aspects of the transformation. The method of building an artifact has also undergone numerous changes and revamps. Selection of the right kind of lumber for construction of wood fixtures, robust building components and power tools and high profile machinery is a necessity for achieving the distinguished and finished look in contemporary furnishings. Gone are the days when most of the fixtures were handmade and thereby were extremely pricey. Moreover, classical décor items were manufactured with the help of simple tools which could not be adequate for the demands of the market in terms of numbers though the quality was exceedingly exceptional.

The use of superior technology and experienced personnel has made the fabrication of furniture items easier and less time consuming. With the machine doing all the work from cutting the materials to painting the artifacts and giving the final finishing touch, physical labor has become limited to simply supervising the functioning of the machines in order to ensure that it does not damage the material under processing due to any malfunction of the equipments.

Nevertheless, machine produced goods can have irreversible manufacturing defects since it is not always subjected to scrutiny by the human eye at each step. A tiny cut on a beveled glass, a slight difference between the width of the right and left legs of a table or an unnoticeable sharpening at the corner of a dining table where there should have been a curve. These are the kind of simple manufacturing defects which although cannot be fixed are never quite a problem for the buyer.

However, handmade modern furniture is quite pricey and usually thought as a collectible in places like San Jose, where modern furniture is prevalent among the average households, not only due to the manual labor involved but because of the notion that handmade furniture are finer in built and quality in comparison to the machine manufactured ones. Contrastingly, the fact is that industrial produced fixtures have the same finery and quality as that of handmade ones. The quality depends upon the building materials and tools used. High quality materials and innovative technology will definitely produce upgraded products which are durable, sturdy and resistant to daily wear and tear. Besides, mass production helps in meeting the increasing demand in the market and helps to cope with supply shortages.