A wood common to the Amazon Basin, this prized wood is rich in figure
and color. The inky black lines do not always flow with the growth rings, giving the
appearance that the lines are printed on an orange wood. Brazilian Rosewood is becoming
more difficult to obtain, especially in larger pieces, making it a very rare and magnificent
Gaboon Ebony is from the western region of central Africa. It is the
most thought of ebony wood with its solid black color and almost no noticeable figure or
grain. This fine wood is very dense and heavy, and is used for the black keys on expensive
Macassar Ebony comes from the country of Sri Lanka. It is similar
to Gaboon Ebony, however Macassar has a far more exotic appearance with its narrow stripes of
black and a rich reddish brown color. These characteristics give this wood a grandiose
personality and a beautiful look.
Mahogany is the most commonly used of furniture
grade woods. The most genuine wood is found in Central America, South America, and the West
Indies. Mahogany has a plethora of figure types that include tiger strip fiddleback, mottles,
and quilted. It can also have a variety of colors that range from pale orange to dark reddish
Sri Lanka produces the best satin wood in the world. Its rich lustrous
gold color catches and reflects the light. The "Bee's Wing" figure is the most sought after.
Because of the wood's density and small pores, it finishes very well.
This reddish-brown wood comes from equatorial Africa. Solely used, is "pommelle". This figure
looks like a sheet covered in blisters. Because of this it is frequently used as a substitute
for quilted figured mahogany.
A classic burl found throughout most of
Europe, it varies in color from a light tan to medium brown. The figure can range from a
swirl to tight small rings, similar to rain falling on a pond.
Primavera grows throughout southern Central America. It's very similar to mahogany because of its grain
pattern and texture. Although it is not found in the mahogany family, it is sometimes
referred to as "White Mahogany".
White Ash grows throughout the northcentral / northeastern United States. It is hard and
durable, yet easily bends and has a similar appearance to oak. Most people are familiar with
its use for baseball bats. The curly figure is somewhat unusual in this species.
Growing in the Pacific Northwest, Madrona Burl is a hard, heavy, tight grained wood, with a
warm brown color. It is also harvested for blocks for making pipes.
Maple grows abundantly throughout North America but mostly in the cooler northern climates.
It is hard with a tight grain that finishes very smooth. When first milled it has a light
cream color that ages to a rich gold. The most sought after figures are curly or tigerstripe,
quilted, birdseye and burl.