Woods

Thuya Wood

Thuya wood usually ranges in colour from a golden brown to a medium reddish brown. It has a characteristic three dimensional light and shade patterned appearance, accompanied by a multitude of small dark ‘eye’ formations. READ MORE

Ebony

Ebony is a very dense, dark wood that can vary from a dark brown to a black colour. Its species can be found in and around India, Africa and South East Asia. READ MORE

Veneer

Veneer is a thin slice of wood, often about 1-2mm thick, that is glued onto another piece of solid core wood, for decorative purposes. READ MORE

Walnut and Burr Walnut

The varieties of Walnut wood have been used in furniture making for many centuries. Walnut veneer was highly priced, with the cost reflecting the ‘fanciness’ of the veneer – the more decorative, then the more expensive and desirable. Figured Walnut and Burr Walnut (sometimes referred to as Burl Walnut) were considered as the most attractive varieties of Walnut. READ MORE

Mahogany

Native of the Americas, India and South East Asia, Mahogany is probably one of the largest ‘families’ of hardwood, having many different varieties within its own species.

Mahogany has been used for centuries in ship building, house building, furniture making etc and is the core structure of most 19th century boxes. The denseness, resilience and strength of Mahogany made it the perfect surface to adhere the exotic veneers to. READ MORE

Rosewood

Rosewood is a rich warm reddish brown wood that has a distinct grain with dark brown and black outlining. One variety of Rosewood can vary significantly from another even though it is of the same species. These Rosewoods, native of India, South East Asia and Brazil, were dense and awkward to work with. READ MORE

Kingwood

Often confused with Rosewood, this lighter, more orangey wood from the same species can share a lot of similar aesthetic attributes to Rosewood. It has a defined grain with darker brown and black patterned outlines contrasting against a lighter background. READ MORE

Satinwood

Whilst very few Victorian boxes were ever fully veneered in Satinwood, box makers often used this opulent and expensive wood to decorate or ‘accent’ areas of the box’s interior instead. Satinwood (Ceylon Satinwood) is a native of Southern India and Sri Lanka and has an illuminating, shimmery yellow/ gold appearance. READ MORE

Coromandel

During the reign of Queen Victoria, Coromandel was considered one of the most exotic, luxurious and expensive woods to work with and it was the veneer of choice for some of the finest boxes. READ MORE

Calamander

Calamander wood is a very close relation to Coromandel and is also a native of India and South East Asia. Like Coromandel, it is a dense, close-grained wood, but tends to be more striped and consistent in appearance, being very similar to what we know today as Macassar Ebony. READ MORE