Custom Furniture vs Mass-produced furniture

Custom Furniture vs Mass-Produced Furniture

Which is right for you?

The biggest reason to choose custom furniture over mass-produced furniture is of course quality, but you probably already guessed that. The biggest thing holding you back is probably the time and/or effort that it takes to get custom furniture that fits your family's needs. 

dining room with oval table, and white chairs all around
custom herringbone buffet furniture
Beautiful polished walnut dining room table called "The sharp"

Let's weigh the pros and cons!

1. Price

While it’s true that most mass-produced furniture is cheaper, that isn’t always the case. Expensive name-brand furniture like that of West Elm or Crate & Barrel, for instance, can have a very comparable price tag to custom furniture while using less quality materials. Yes, you read that right. A high price tag does not guarantee quality.

When you buy from Ikea, Walmart or Target you’re pretty much guaranteed a cheap piece. If it’s all you can afford, it’s an understandable purchase, but make sure you read some reviews! On the whole, if you are only focused on price, mass-produced wins.

2. Longevity

If you would like your furniture to last you through college, and you don’t care about it after that, then trusty Ikea does the trick. If you want something to last you 5-15 years, then a step-up to a more trusted mass-produced furniture company is fine!

On the other hand, If you are looking for a dining room table that you can pass on to your kids when they’ve grown and have kids of their own; you need to go for custom furniture from a trusted woodworker.

3. Style

If you are looking for something that is currently on trend, mass-produced will have that on their front page. However, if you are wanting a timeless piece, go with high quality materials and expert craftsmanship. If you really love a current trend (I personally love mid-century modern) custom woodworkers can always make that too. High quality furniture doesn’t go out of style. 😉

4. Ease

What’s the easiest, most convenient option? If you aren’t picky and don’t get overwhelmed by the sheer volume of options, a table from Amazon Prime will do the trick. Just one problem… Even though the convenience seems at first glance to be the best it could possibly be, you usually pay for that by spending 6 hours in assembly (and maybe a little squabbling with your building partner). You’ll also need to go through the same process again sooner when your furniture breaks or gets worn down. So while it’s true that it may be easier and faster on the front end, it ends up biting you in the you-know-what down the line.

5. Buying with Purpose

When you buy from a carpenter or local woodworkers, you are helping the little guy instead of a multi-million (or multi-billion) dollar corporation. You’re giving back to your local community, and buying a piece with a story. You’re buying furniture that was built with passion, pride, talent, and real hands; not a machine. Not to mention all the stories that piece of furniture will get to carry with it as you get to pass it on, instead of putting it on the curb in 10 years.

6. Personal Taste

Obviously if you want something built to your taste you’ve got to go custom. You can search a hundred searches and find an overpriced piece that is almost exactly what you want, or you can talk with an experienced craftsman and design perfectly, exactly what’s best for your style and lifestyle.

7. Quality

Buying custom furniture can seem too bougie for a lot of people, but the truth is, the old adage is true, “You get what you pay for”. Yes, it’s cliché. Yes, it’s also true.

The winner? Custom furniture.

In conclusion, if you can afford it, investing in quality custom furniture is always the best option. I would love to have the honor of building your custom dining table, or other project. If you’re still not sure if going with a craftsman is the route for you, get yourself a free quote and then make up your mind. 

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