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Idigbo Wood in Contemporary Furniture Design: Trends and Applications

Tips & Guides Industry Practices
06 July 2023 min read

Idigbo Wood in Contemporary Furniture Design: Trends and Applications

Wood has been a beloved material for furniture design since time immemorial. 

Its natural beauty, durability, and versatility make it perfect for creating functional and aesthetically pleasing pieces. 

There has been a growing trend towards using exotic woods in contemporary furniture design in recent years. One such wood that has gained popularity among designers and artisans is idigbo wood. 

In this article, we will delve into the remarkable properties of idigbo wood, its applications, and how it has become a staple in modern furniture design.


What is Idigbo Wood?

Idigbo wood, scientifically known as Terminalia ivorensis, is a hardwood native to West Africa. It’s a light yellowish-brown timber with a beautiful grain pattern, often featuring interlocking streaks. 

Idigbo wood is highly sought after for its remarkable strength and durability. It’s also considered a sustainable option as it’s readily available in large quantities.


Characteristics and Properties

1. Grain

Idigbo wood has an attractive interlocked grain pattern, giving it a distinctive appearance. This unique grain is highly appreciated by designers who seek to introduce a touch of uniqueness to their furniture pieces.


2. Colour

Its light yellowish-brown colour makes it an excellent choice for furniture with a warm and inviting aesthetic.


3. Texture

The texture of idigbo wood is moderately coarse, which makes it ideal for creating furniture with a natural and rustic look.


4. Workability

Idigbo wood is relatively easy to work with, as it responds well to both hand and machine tools. It can be smoothly planed, turned, and sanded, allowing artisans to achieve intricate details and a high-quality finish.


5. Durability

Idigbo wood has good resistance to decay, making it a reliable choice for furniture that can withstand the test of time. It also has good resistance to insect attacks, further enhancing its longevity.


Applications in Furniture Design

1. Indoor Furniture

Idigbo wood is commonly used in the construction of various indoor furniture pieces. Its warm colour and unique grain pattern make it ideal for crafting cabinets, tables, chairs, bookshelves, and other interior furniture items. Idigbo can add elegance and charm to any living space, whether used in its natural finish or stained to a darker shade.


2. Doors and Windows

Idigbo wood's durability and resistance to moisture make it a popular choice for doors and window frames. Its ability to withstand varying weather conditions and its aesthetic appeal makes it an excellent option for residential and commercial applications.


3. Flooring

Idigbo's exceptional strength and stability make it suitable for wooden flooring. Its warm colour and distinctive grain pattern can bring natural beauty to any interior space.


4. Exterior Applications

While not as naturally durable as other hardwoods, idigbo wood can still be used in exterior designs such as cladding, garden furniture, and decking. Proper treatment and maintenance can significantly extend its lifespan in outdoor settings.


Modern Adaptations of Idigbo Wood in Furniture Design

In response to evolving consumer tastes and growing environmental consciousness, furniture designers are finding creative ways to integrate idigbo wood into their designs. 

Below are some of the innovative approaches that are being embraced.


1. Mixed Material Design

Integrating idigbo wood with other materials such as glass, metal, or even other types of wood is a trend gaining traction in contemporary furniture design. Combining these different materials can highlight the unique characteristics of idigbo and make the piece stand out. 

For instance, a dining table with an idigbo wood top and sleek metal legs can blend the rustic charm of wood with the modern aesthetics of metal.


2. Minimalist Design

Given the complexity and richness of idigbo's grain, many contemporary designers use it in minimalist designs. This approach allows the grain and colour of the wood to take centre stage, making a statement without the need for intricate details or ornamentation.


3. Eco-Chic Design

With sustainability a significant concern, furniture made from eco-friendly materials like idigbo wood is increasingly popular. The 'eco-chic' trend encapsulates beautiful, high-quality pieces with a low environmental impact. Designers can use idigbo wood to create stunning, responsible furniture that caters to the eco-conscious consumer.


Idigbo Wood in Commercial Spaces

Not just limited to residential spaces, idigbo has also found its way into commercial interiors. Businesses increasingly know their impact on customer perception and employee productivity.


1. Workspaces

Idigbo wood is being used in modern office designs to create a warm and inviting environment. Its distinctive grain and colour add a touch of nature that can help reduce stress and increase productivity. From executive desks to meeting tables and bookcases, idigbo wood offers durability and beauty in equal measures.


2. Retail Spaces

Idigbo can create a welcoming and high-end feel in retail spaces. Whether used in display shelves, counters, or as part of the store's overall architectural design, idigbo wood can enhance the customer experience by creating an atmosphere of warmth and luxury.


3. Hospitality Industry

Hotels and restaurants also embrace idigbo for its aesthetic appeal and durability. The wood’s versatility and charm make it a preferred choice in the hospitality sector, from stylish bar counters to plush hotel suites.


Sustainability and Environmental Considerations

Woodshop Direct is committed to sourcing wood ethically and promoting sustainable practices. Idigbo wood, as a relatively fast-growing species, is considered sustainable. It’s widely available and can be responsibly harvested or sourced from well-managed plantations. 

By choosing idigbo wood, furniture designers and consumers can support sustainable forestry practices and contribute to the preservation of forests.


Idigbo Wood Hardwood at Woodshop Direct

Idigbo wood's unique grain pattern, warm colour, durability, and workability make it a favourite among contemporary furniture designers. Its versatility in indoor and outdoor applications and its sustainable sourcing further add to its appeal. 

Whether used in the construction of indoor furniture, doors, windows, flooring, or exterior applications, idigbo wood offers a perfect blend of aesthetics and durability.

As a leading supplier of premium wood, Woodshop Direct provides a wide range of idigbo wood products to suit all your furniture design needs. Browse our website or contact our knowledgeable team to discover how idigbo wood can elevate your furniture designs and create timeless pieces that will be cherished for generations.