Distressed look: veneer trends for 2018

17-Aug-2018

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Distressed and rustic is the current trend for veneers. © Initiative Furnier + Natur/Röhr GmbH

Initiative Furnier + Natur (IFN) has examined the latest trends in real-wood veneers. Especially popular according to the experts are brushed, rough-cut, sandblasted, planewave and chopped looks – and with individual designs to the customer’s specification being very much on-trend.

Real-wood surfaces can tell a story. Furniture or floorings made from natural wood are enhanced by its patina. But old wood is often time-consuming to process and hence rarely available. Initiative Furnier + Natur has noticed that it is increasingly common to distress veneers for this reason.The thinly sliced, natural surface material is now available in a wide variety of different looks. The selection of individual surfaces currently ranges from knotty oak to dark walnut and the varying colour of Balkan oak through to spruce, Swiss pine and larch, both with and without knots.

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End-grain veneer is all the rage in 2018. © Initiative Furnier + Natur/Schorn + Groh

With today’s veneers, there are no limits to the personal desires and preferences of the user, installer or moderniser. The natural surfaces are suitable for all imaginable applications in furniture making, flooring and interior construction. “At the moment, so-called end-grain or cross-grain veneer is all the rage. It has an extraordinary appearance because the annual growth rings of the tree can be easily made out,” explains Ursula Geismann, Executive Officer of Initiative Furnier + Natur (IFN).

Classic, smooth veneers are also used in automotive manufacturing. Here, too, a wide range of looks are possible. New industrial processes are increasing the spectrum even further by incorporating features such as metal intarsias into wood surfaces. Previously this would have only been possible with labour-intensive handwork. A new level of design freedom can be achieved with 3D printing, which can produce organically shaped veneer elements, among many other possibilities. “Anything you like goes. The immense spectrum of veneer looks makes it hard to decide today,” says Ursula Geismann.

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