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With my custom furniture, upholstery, and millwork company Upbeat Designs, we take great care in fabricating furniture — our master craftsmen apply their expertise to every custom-ordered item that goes out our doors. Since our furniture is made with such high quality, we want our pieces to last as long as possible, and we advise our clients with the best way possible to care for their pieces. This blog includes four key points to remember when taking care of your wooden furniture that even I instill in my business.

Dusting Really Is Important

If a piece of furniture hasn’t been dusted in a while, you’ll notice a thin, filmy layer has likely formed on the surface. But letting a piece of furniture get dusty can’t hurt it, right? Although dust particles are small, surprisingly they can scratch the fine surfaces of wood. Make sure you dust your furniture frequently — I recommend once per week. It’s also important to remember to dust with a slightly damp cloth so it will catch everything. Dry dusting will get your furniture clean, but it won’t take very long for those particles to settle down again!

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Never Use an All-Purpose Cleaner

Although it’s in the name, all-purpose cleaners really aren’t meant for all purposes, like cleaning wooden furniture. The chemicals found in those cleaners are too harsh to use on the fine wood, unless your furniture has a plastic coating to protect it. Instead, use a wood cleaner that’s specifically made for cleaning your wooden furniture.

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Limit Heat and Light Exposure

Since wood does come from trees, there’s always a certain level of moisture that’s present in the material. It’s extremely important to maintain this moisture level, or else your wooden furniture may become warped or discolored. To protect your furniture, never place anything near heating vents, fireplaces, radiators, or places that get a lot of direct sunlight. Not only will the sunlight dry out your furniture, but it will also cause the beautiful color of the wood to fade.

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Use Coasters

Wooden furniture is meant to have a lot of use out of it, but it’s important to remember that it does need protection from daily wear and tear. Excess moisture and heat from dishware can leave permanent rings and marks on the woods’ finish — leaving your nice, wooden table looking tattered. To prevent these stains, place your glassware on coasters and trivets. Place mats, tablecloths or table covers may can protect your table as well.

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Sim Fern is the founder of Upbeat Designs, a Brooklyn-based provider of custom furniture, upholstery, and millwork services for luxury residential and commercial spaces. Sim has always had a passion for furniture, as he’s been working in the business since he was a teenager. What started out as a side job turned into a career for Sim — he’s now transitioned from small projects for homeowners to a wide range of clientele with Upbeat Designs. You can connect with Sim Fern online.