Walnut is hardwood, and is a strong and durable wood. It retains its shape very well but it also carves easily, and it is often used for the more traditional and classic styles of furniture. English walnut is a common type, and black walnut is also popular in furniture making. Walnut comes in a variety of shades and colors, from light brown to surprisingly dark, depending on which part of the tree the wood comes from. The darker shades come from the middle part of the tree and the lighter varieties from the outside of the trees.
Walnut is often used in furniture that is decorated with inlays and other intricate details, or has detailed woodwork. Headboards for beds, wooden chests with decorative inlays and other pieces with ornamental features often use walnut. Walnut became very popular in furniture making around the beginning of the 17th century and was the main material for wooden furniture for over a century. This period is often referred to as the age of walnut. Oak had previously been used in furniture, but as walnut started to appear, it was soon seen as an easier material for making some decorative features, such as inlays. During this time period, walnut inlays became very popular and replaced the more heavily decorated and carved features familiar from the previous oak furniture.
Genuine walnut is not cheap, and today much of the walnut furniture on the market is made with walnut veneer. If you want to get furniture made of solid walnut and not veneer, the best place to look for it can be the nearest antique store or other furniture specialists. If you are happy with veneer, which is also more affordable than the solid type, you can often find walnut furniture in any furniture store or home store. Good deals can sometimes be made in yard sales and second hand stores, and if the surface of the material shows some wear and tear, you can get it refinished and it will look almost as good as new.
If you take good care of your walnut furniture, it can stay attractive for years to come and keep its beautiful finish for the rest of your life.