Furniture is an integral part of the interior design of any room. Its main function is to provide a place to sit and rest, but it also gives the overall feeling of comfort and warmth to any space. When choosing your furniture, it is important to consider your lifestyle and the way you use the room you are furnishing. For example, if you have young children or pets, it is best to choose stain-resistant fabrics and woods that will stand up to repeated contact.
The most common type of furniture is made of wood. There are many different types of woods, from soft pine to exotic mahogany and teak. Different woods have different characteristics, such as color and grain. For example, some woods have a very fine grain that shows scratches and marks more readily than others. Other factors that influence the choice of wood include its cost, durability and maintenance requirements.
Another consideration when selecting furniture is its style and finish. Upholstery is the process of covering furniture with a fabric, leather or other material. Early upholstery materials included animal hides and leather, while more recent materials include burlap, tweed, felt and velvet. Fastening techniques have evolved from tacks and nails to buttons, grommets and zippers.
Furniture is usually designed in a specific style, ranging from the highly functional to the decorative. In the more practical styles, the form follows function, with minimal embellishment. This approach is used in utilitarian pieces, such as tables, chairs and beds, but it is also the basis for much finer craftsmanship, such as cabinetry and carved woodwork.