Bamboo Wood – The perfect choice for furniture
Posted on Jun 26, 2012
Harmony in the Home Blog
Five Reasons Why Bamboo Wood is the Perfect Choice for Eco-Friendly Contemporary Furniture
When it comes to creating the perfect modern bedroom, dining room or living room, natural materials are the way to go. Soft natural materials such as cotton, silk, and rubber tree-derived latex make great linens and mattresses for platform beds. Bamboo makes great flooring, bedroom furniture and even looks great standing upright in an earthen vase. Not only are natural materials sustainable, they help to create a Zen feel about the modern bedroom. The following 5 reasons will help you decide if bamboo eco-friendly contemporary furniture is right for you.
1. Environmentally Sustainable
Bamboo is an excellent material for eco-friendly furniture products because it grows back very quickly. Bamboo is one of the earth's fastest growing plants, a grass that grows to maturity in 5 years or less. Bamboo is a fully sustainable, environmentally friendly and rapidly growing renewable resource. Bamboo reduces the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide, which is the main contributor to reduce global warming. Bamboo releases about 35% more oxygen than equivalent stands of trees making it one of the best plants on earth to sequester carbon. Healthier for you and healthier for the planet.
There are about 1200 bamboo species throughout the world. Furniture made of mature Moso bamboo that is at least 5 years old ensures that contemporary furniture possesses strength, hardness and stability. Normally, “classic bamboo” is 20% harder than Oak, and “exotic bamboo” is 100% harder than Red Oak. Either choice would be a great option for eco-friendly bamboo furniture. Be sure to check whether the bamboo furniture is 100% bamboo with no added filler, fiberboard or MDF.
3. Caramel Color
Natural bamboo has a very blonde color. Look for bamboo furniture that is made with caramelized bamboo. The bamboo is placed in steam vats so the natural sugars in the bamboo carbonize. This takes the natural blonde color of the bamboo and turns the finish into a dark and warmer, honey-toned caramel color. No chemicals should be used in this process.
4. Classic Bamboo
There is a difference between Classic and Exotic Bamboo, and it's all in the way that it is made. Classic Bamboo is made from mature bamboo canes, which have at least 5 years of growth. The bamboo is cross cut to the required length, the outside bamboo knots are ground off and then the bamboo is put through a splitting and sizing machine. The inside bamboo knots are ground off and outer skin is removed and milled into rectangular strips. Next, the bamboo strips are put into a pressurized steam vessel to achieve the color change-carbonization process - this is where the fun really starts. Before this stage, these bamboo strips are still in a blond color which is the natural color of bamboo. Through this process, the bamboo becomes caramelized. The strips are dried in a kiln several days until the moisture content reaches to 6%-9%. Finally the strips go through a fine planing machine to finalize and smooth out the wood, are sorted to match up the colors, glued together and hydraulic pressed to produce large boards that are ready to be cut into a variety of dimensions, perfect for contemporary furniture.
5. Exotic Bamboo
Exotic Bamboo starts in the same place as the Classic Bamboo, made from mature bamboo canes, which have at least 5 years of growth. The bamboo is cross cut to the required length, the outside bamboo knots are ground off and then the bamboo is put through a splitting and sizing machine. Next, the bamboo strips are put into a pressurized steam vessel to achieve the color change through the carbonization process. Then, the look and feel of the bamboo is taken to the next level: Exotic. The bamboo strips are then put into a large mold and soaked in a mixture of adhesive. The mold is then heated and compressed using a four story hydraulic press machine. The color changes from the Classic Caramel (light) into a deeper, richer caramel color. And because the individual strips have been sliced to reveal the fibers within the bamboo, the final product showcases the inner beauty of the bamboo without compromising its strength or sustainability for eco-friendly furniture.
By choosing eco-friendly, sustainable bamboo contemporary furniture, you are purchasing products made with materials which are sustainably harvested, assembled in a less ecologically harmful manner, and that do not off gas dangerous chemicals and gasses. This is good for you and good for the environment.
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