Designing Better Futon Furniture

Furniture manufacturer often introduce new products and improve on them over time. The futon industry has followed this pattern as well over the years. The construction of a futon frame consists of several primary parts. They include a set of arms, rails, seat rack and back rack sections. Futon manufacturers vary the way they make these parts and the materials they use in the construction of these frames. Of course not all futon frames will be made the same and some manufacturers incorporate unique designs or features into their products that make them stand out. In this article we’ll examine several current popular manufacturers of futon frames that have brought design innovations into the industry, their stories as well as the construction techniques and features that they have developed over the years.

The August Lotz Story:

August Lotz started out in 1897. Located in Wisconsin they got their start making wooden bee keeping equipment. Soon after that they would expand out into making wooden furniture components for several different furniture manufacturers creating a niche for themselves in that industry. In the early 1990′s the company was purchased by Mark Barton and Mark Schlichter. They wanted to create fine solid hardwood furniture, futon furniture to be exact in a time when the futon industry was still quite young. Mark Barton was lead engineer and developed the existing designs used throughout the August Lotz futon frame line today.

His August Lotz futon frame design is unique when compared to other products throughout the market place. The seat and back section slats are designed with an interlocking English dovetail system that joints slat grid sections into the back rack and seat rack sections. While many manufacturers were using simple staples or nails for their slat support systems, Lotz was ahead of its time by incorporating high-end old world construction techniques into each August Lotz futon frame.

August Lotz frames are made from oak and many styles are available in a medium finish or an English oak finish. August Lotz was purchased several years ago by a Wisconsin manufacturer by the name of SourceCut Industries. That same commitment to design and quality of materials has remained the same. Their convertible sofas earned a Consumer’s Digest Best Buy Award for premium futon frames. An award given to fewer than 5% of manufacturers in a given industry. While it’s parent company SourceCut Industries offers domestic manufacturing, August Lotz products are imported with the same specifications and designs that have earned them the title of “best value in the market”.

The LifeStyle Solutions Story:

Founded in 1989 under the name Elite, LifeStyle Solutions entered the market with some very unique designs in futon furniture. They were among the first brands to incorporate Asian inspired materials and designs into several futon frame lines and have made an impact with their front operated and easy to open futons.

LifeStyle Solutions imports their futon line of products from Indonesia which are made to their specifications. It has always been important to LifeStyle Solutions that their products be made from sustainable forests and their pieces are crafted from ITTO certified (International Tropical Timber Organization) plantation grown hardwoods. LifeStyle Solutions has also earned the Sustainable Forest Management Certificate that shows their production materials are legally harvested from well-managed forests as defined by a comprehensive list of regulations.

CEO Sean Pathiratne leads this fast growing furniture company and has built a reputation for creating exceptional quality and value in every LifeStyle Solutions futon frame. Much of the LifeStyle Solutions futon furniture is transitional in design which will allow it to blend in well with both modern and traditional home d├ęcor.

The Night & Day Furniture Story:

Beginning in the late 1990′s, Night & Day Furniture was founded by Mike Gallawa. His simple goal was to create futon frames that could be converted easily from sofa to bed, making sure bolts can be lined up and ensuring that there is less hardware for the end user to have to deal with. Night & Day Furniture solved these issues with several patented features found throughout the Night & Day Furniture line.

Night & Day Furniture products are made from eco-friendly plantation grown rubberwood. Rubberwood is a member of the maple family of woods and offers a dense grain which helps in the kiln drying process. Rubberwood trees are latex producing and at the end of their cycle are cut down and replaced with new seedlings. Made in Malaysia. Night & Day futon frames are made to the highest standards of quality and construction.

Night & Day Furniture futons incorporate several different design features that are said to make assembly easier for the end user. The patented shoe fittings TM operating system incorporates several types of unique hardware applications. The Snapper TM provides snap on assembly and easy front conversion of your seat and back sections. ThumbNut TM is a barrel shaped nut that eliminates movement of the nut during assembly without the need for extra tools. Shoe Fittings TM systems are available Bronze or Gold depending on the features available.

In this article we’ve taken a look at several leading futon furniture manufacturers. August Lotz which was founded in the late 1800′s went from making wooden bee hive equipment to creating wooden frame decks using sliding English dovetail joinery. Mark Barton was lead engineer for Lotz and created most of the concepts and designs used throughout the line today. LifeStyle Solutions was founded originally under the name of Elite and is an import manufacturer who brought transitional designs into the futon industry. LifeStyle Solutions was among the first brands to incorporate Asian inspired designs and finishes throughout their line. Finally Night & Day Furniture founded by Mike Gallawa. Night & Day wanted to take a unique approach to futon design by simplifying the way futons go together. Developing patented hardware and assembly methods allowed them to make a futon frame easier to assemble.

I have always found it interesting how different manufacturers approach the design of furniture. Often many of the design aspects are similar or the same but sometimes manufacturers take a unique approach to design or come up with a radically new concept that makes that piece of furniture so much better than other products in the marketplace. This is the case with these manufacturers who have found ways to take an existing product line and make it even better.

Decorating Your Guest’s Bedroom Using White Bedroom Furniture

The perfect way to brighten a guest bedroom, white bedroom furniture, comes in a great number of furniture layouts. Depending on the guests’ ages, bedrooms featuring white furniture can function as both adult and children’s sleeping areas. Many people may choose to furnish a guests bedroom suitable for both adults and children, while others may tailor the bedroom’s theme to some specific guest occupant. This second option is fantastic for hosting parents, in-laws or if sharing custody of the child, getting the guest bedroom designed for a girl or boy.

Actually, probably the most popular colors for girl’s bedroom furniture is really a basic white bed accented by colorful flowers. Younger girls might even be interested in white bedroom furniture with decorated little princess designs or bed headboards shaped in princess-themed crowns and/or castles. Boys will enjoy white furniture accented having a sports’ theme. White headboards, featuring a variety of painted baseball, basketball and soccer balls, are often coupled with a table dresser featuring sport-themed drawer pulls.

If while using guest bedroom to have an adult child or parent’s guest bedroom, well-liked bedroom furniture collections incorporate using wicker, rattan and/or surefire. With respect to the bedroom’s theme, white bedroom furniture for a Cape Cod or seaside-themed bedroom may consist of wicker or rattan choices, while a Victorian-themed bedroom may demand using white, cast iron beds and solid wood night stands.

While some individuals may shy away from buying all-white furniture models, you will find simple ways people can dress-up plain, white furniture items. One of the least difficult items to focus on is a bed. Because there are a variety of comforter and duvet sets obtainable, selecting a colorful one with white accents, provides the bed a focus while helping tie-in the white headboard to the white-accented comforter.

Another easy furniture fix involves chests, dressers and other bedroom furniture items using handles or drawer pulls. In case your room is decorated, utilizing a particular decorating theme, try to look for hardware that coordinates with your chosen theme. Dresser pulls, chest hardware and other items can have outside hardware changed to subtly strengthen the room’s decorating theme. On top, scarves, runners and cloths can be put about the furniture to safeguard it, as well as aid tie-in the room’s design.

Before obtaining the white bedroom furniture, make sure the room is measured so you will know just how each item will fit, and to make sure you buy the proper size and measurements of furniture items. Guest bedrooms may be gentle and airy, because it is the area for your invited family and friends to relax. Once purchased, decorate to taste and await your guests to arrive.

Alfredo Camargo is an Internet Marketer, Writer and Consultant whose passions include helping people, red wine, coffee, travel, film and tea.

Furniture Hardware

Replacing the old and worn hardware on your furniture can go a long way towards bringing new life to your older pieces and it can save on the expense of buying new furniture. Knobs and pulls come in a variety of shapes and sizes and can be mixed and matched beautifully on one or more pieces in your home to create a common theme. Glass knobs and pulls add a touch of unexpected elegance while ornate brass hardware can accent precious antiques.

When replacing any type of hardware it is important to pay attention to the original knobs, pulls or hinges that were used. Heavier drawers tend to use larger knobs to compensate for additional weight and this should be considered when choosing a replacement. If you are planning to use the original holes for replacement pulls, measure the space between them (the “center to center” mounting distance) and choose a pull that will fit that size. Different pulls may have different center to center spacing so pay attention when reviewing the details for installation.

There are several different materials to choose from when selecting new or replacement hardware for the furniture in your home. Solid brass provides incredible strength and durability while pewter comes in a variety of unique patterns and designs. Cast iron is a wonderful choice for colonial or mission style furniture. Glass knobs are a unique way to introduce color into any piece and are available in a range of choices from bright ruby red to deep cobalt to pink.

LookInTheAttic & Company offers a wide selection of beautiful knobs and pulls for any piece of furniture in your home. Create a common theme by using the same or similar patterns and finishes on different pieces throughout your home. Remember that sometimes the smallest details can make the biggest impact on a design so select a knob or pull that reflects your decorating taste and unique style.

Restoring Period Furniture With Antique Style Hardware

Antique, or period, furniture has a distinct appearance. Yet, few pieces are truly pristine. If you come in possession of such a piece, the slightly dirty patina and dented hardware indicate that some restoration is essential. However, refurbishing antique furniture is not a uniform process, and a few points must be kept in mind.

When it comes to antique furniture, there are two approaches to restoration: modernizing it or retaining the period look. The latter typically requires less work, while the former can have a garish, jarring appearance – an amalgamation of period shapes and modern finishes and hardware. On a basic level, the antique furniture, to keep its period look, needs cleaning, new hardware, and perhaps a new finish. Either way, a less invasive approach is recommended for restoration, as changing the furniture too much can devalue it.

Finding antique-style hardware is a challenge, but finishing presents far more complications. Not all antique finishes are identical, and before you strip it and add a new one, determine if the existing one is shellac, lacquer, or varnish, or a custom, painted finish a craftsman would have specifically created. Dirt, on the other hand, may simply be obscuring the true look of the finish, and cleaning, first, is recommended, particularly with a non oil-based product. If the wood is still uneven after cleaning, a finish may be needed, and like a cleaner, the stain should not be oil based. Why avoid oil-based products? Although the effects may not be immediate, the surface may oxidize years down the line, taking on a mottled appearance.

Hardware is a particularly crucial aspect of antique furniture restoration, and not all handles, knobs, or pulls can be used with all pieces. Save for the precise fit, antique hardware has a distinct appearance, one reflecting the architecture of its day. While modern hardware tends to have a versatile, smooth look and feel, such a style seems anachronistic when placed against the period shapes, contours, and finishes.

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