Bumgardner, Matthew S.; Bush, Robert J.; West, Cynthia D.
September 2000
Forest Products Journal;Sep2000, Vol. 50 Issue 9, p51
Academic Journal
This study investigated marketing and product development issues associated with character-marked furniture. Previous research has indicated that inclusion of character-marks, or naturally occurring features of wood considered defects under the standard hardwood lumber grading system, is a potentially effective strategy for improving lumber utilization and lowering overall lumber costs for furniture manufacturers. Yet, use of character-marks in hardwood furniture remains limited. Interview-based case studies were developed to better understand the experiences large furniture manufacturers have had with character-marked products. Factors associated with successful development and marketing of character-marked furniture are investigated with regard to designer influence, interaction with retailers, and product design. Also, common barriers to character-mark acceptance are identified and discussed. This information will help guide third-party efforts aimed toward increasing the use of character-marks in hardwood furniture products, and aid furniture manufacturers considering increased use of character-marks in their product mix.


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