Exotic Woods vs. Dyes

Posted by Jeremy Walls | | Posted On Thursday, December 29, 2016 at 4:33 AM

While graduate school has caused my time in the workshop to be minimal, I recently found time to make a plant stand that coupled vibrant contrasting wood slats and a modern black pipe base. Some of you may have seen the photo preview of the project uploaded on our Facebook page (find us and like our page if you haven't already - link on the right panel of this page!). Here are some pictures of the finished table. I used twelve wood species in total with a variety of colors, surrounded by a maple frame. I've now been using exotic woods to make colorful tabletops and cutting boards for over five years. My ideology has always been that using exotic woods rather than dyes creates a purer, more honest piece of woodworking. Telling customers about where the different woods originate from and how the pieces are real wood with no artificial coloring adds to the story and quality of the piece. To me it's similar to using solid hardwood versus veneers for a project (maybe that's an extreme comparison, but you get the point). There is a downside to "staying pure" though. Exotic woods are not only more expensive than using dyes, but they also won't hold their color over time as dyes will (so I'm told...). I have definitely been wary of continuing my use of exotic woods rather than dyes, as I've read more and more about how wood ages and colors change, regardless of the impacts of sunlight. However, I have yet to see significant color changes in projects I've made within the past five years (I know, I know...it can take up to, or more than ten years...), so I suppose until the loss of color results in the true decline in aesthetics of one of my pieces, I will continue to use exotic woods for my projects. Anyway, the pictures of the finished table are below. Let me know what you think of the table, and if you have any opinions on using exotic woods versus dyes!

Oh...and we have a new pattern coming soon!








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