As with anything we consider buying, a bit of background knowledge goes a long way, here we will look at if reclaimed wood furniture is cheaper than furniture produced from new wood.
The answer to this is no - but also yes!! There are several factors that you should take into account when considering what to purchase.
Reclaimed wood is wood that is being reused after the end of its first life as part of a building, ship, barn or factory etc. As the structure is demolished any reusable timbers are collected and sold on to craftsmen and salvage yards. One of the main benefits here is saving perfectly good useable wood rather than it just being disposed of in landfill.
The wood used to craft reclaimed furniture, whether that's a reclaimed wood coffee table or rustic bed made from reclaimed timber will have been assessed by the craftsmen before they use it to ensure it is completely fit for its new purpose. So there is a bit of a process it has to go through before it actually starts to be reused. Having said that the same is true of new wood, the trees are felled, transported, debarked and cut into planks to get them to the ready to start working with, but this uses more energy and resources and will have more of an environmental impact.
Reclaimed wood is generally stronger and more durable than new wood as it is already decades old and has passed the test of time - it will most likely also be more climate resistant than new wood. The trees that were originally cut down, decades ago, were likely to be mature trees - rather than new trees grown as quickly as possible for mass furniture production.
Reclaimed wood is more aesthetic - craftsmen working with reclaimed planks will know how to make the most of any features the wood may have and celebrate them! Little dents, cracks and knots are what you want to see in your industrial dining table - these add character, history and uniqueness to your furniture. Rustic furniture, in particular, made from reclaimed wood is absolutely stunning.
Another thing to factor in is the fact that reclaimed wood can be repaired more easily - so a reclaimed wood table in a family home is a great choice. Furniture technicians are be able to repair and make good any damage to a reclaimed wood dining table than a new one.
In summary, there are many pros to purchasing reclaimed furniture which do justify the slightly higher price tag. So although the initial outlay may seem a little more - you will have a product that has many more benefits in the long run
- Using reclaimed wood helps the environment
- The furniture has more character
- Reclaimed wood is more easily repairable
- Most furniture is handmade and finished giving it an individual touch
- Reclaimed wood furniture is more likely to last longer than some new wood furniture