The UK has a long history of skilled carpentry and knowledge of traditional hand-crafting techniques has been handed down through the generations. British-made furniture is still regarded as premium and a worthwhile investment in a world that is rapidly changing. Concern for the environment, Brexit, the pandemic and now war in Ukraine and world energy prices have changed, and are continuing to change, our purchasing habits.
Consumers are becoming savvier and more aware of environmental issues, with the consequence that the throwaway culture of previous decades is going out of fashion. Indigenous timbers such as elm, oak, ash, sycamore, beech, cherry and chestnut along with other materials can be sourced locally to create beautiful furniture without the need to ship pieces for thousands of miles, creating a high carbon footprint. Furniture made locally and built to last is an appealing proposition and a selling point in a crowded marketplace.
Pride in the local economy and local jobs is another important factor for the future of the furniture industry in the UK post-Brexit. There is also a knowledge that UK companies operate within the legal framework covering employment, safe working conditions and product compliance standards. British companies by law have to pay at least the minimum wage and cannot use child labour nor engage in modern slavery.
The global pandemic highlighted existing environmental concerns as people stayed at home and changed their shopping habits, shining a spotlight on the possibility of a much greener world. Lead times on locally produced furniture are of course much shorter and less susceptible to hiccups in the supply chain. Delivery dates are therefore more reliable and less energy has to be expended delivering the finished piece to its ultimate destination.
World Energy Prices
Following on from the pandemic came a huge increase in world energy prices, a situation that has been exacerbated by the war in Ukraine. World energy supply chains have been thrown into chaos, rendering the shipping of goods thousands of miles around the globe to be an even less attractive proposition than before. This affects both the import of raw materials and the transportation of finished goods, ticking another box in favour of producing furniture for the UK market, in the UK.
We at Furniture4YourHome have been hand-making furniture in our own workshops since 1990. We believe that our knowledge of the local market not only enables us to create the type of furniture that British customers want to buy, it also helps us to maintain high standards of customer service from ordering through to delivery.