March 7, 2023
The Hidden Price To Pay For Low-Cost FurnitureFounding father and renowned penny-pincher Ben knew what was up 250 years ago when he said: “The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.” Interior designer Tiffany Cassidy updates that axiom for anyone buying furniture in the 21st Century like so: “The thing about fast furniture is you get what you get and you don’t get upset.” Caveat emptor — let the buyer beware — was coined for products exactly like fast furniture. There is a hidden price to pay for lower-cost flash, especially when we’re talking about items you live with, interact with and rely on every day.
March 7, 2023
The Truth About Fast Furniture: Next stop, the dump
America is throwing away furniture at a disturbing clip. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, 12 million tons, 450% more per year than in 1960, now finds its way into landfills.
The problem accelerated with the arrival of Covid. That event seemed to trigger consumers’ willingness to make larger purchases online, leading to a rapid rise in “fast furniture” — relatively inexpensive, trendy, made from substandard materials and designed to catch your eye, last for a year or two and then fall apart so you must buy again. It has given a whole new meaning to “one nightstand.”
June 30, 2022
We’ve Never Made The Same Product Twice
Nature is not in the business of consistency. There are no Formica® forests. Every hardwood tree that grows in the Appalachian mountains develops its own graining and tone depending on elevation, severity of the winters, rainfall and competition for sunlight. Once that tree makes it to the lumberyard, it’s up to our buyers to determine if it is Gat Creek-worthy.
“There are specific standards for grading lumber,” said Gat Caperton. “The National Hardwood Lumber Association has spent a century making them as confusing and complicated as possible. While we consider the standards, what we rely on is the old-fashioned eye test. Does it look like it will make a pretty piece of furniture or not.”
June 30, 2022
Experience Finish Samples In The Comfort Of Your Own Home
As you shop Gat Creek for your home you will want all the information you can gather with material and finish undoubtedly at the top of your list.
Whether your interest is in one of our ash, cherry, maple or walnut finishes, you will want to review wood finish samples in your home to evaluate the grain feel and color value. These 6” x 3” real wood samples are the closest possible representations of the materials and finish we use to build our furniture. Paint finish samples are much easier to make and less expensive to sample but just as valuable. These extra large paint chips are generously sized at 5.5” x 3.5”.
June 30, 2022
Timeless Design - What It Means For Our Customers
Want a dresser shaped like a milk carton? With hardware that looks like it came off a barn door? If you’re in the market for something wildly faddish you can find it. Just not at Gat Creek.
“Our design emphasis has been on the beauty of the wood rather than some carving or adornments," Gat Caperton said. "The things we tend to love the most are traditional in overall form but made more contemporary by simplifying.”
In the language of interior designers, Gat Creek’s look is “timeless,” said Katy Anderson, whose boutique design firm serves clients in Washington DC, Maryland and Virginia. She specializes in creating elegant, functional spaces that are practical and highly fashionable.
February 18, 2022
Sustainably Made-To-Order Products Are More Fashionable And Less WastefulFor furniture companies manufacturing overseas, maximizing profits means using cheap labor and lesser quality materials, guessing consumer tastes well into the future, shipping many container loads, warehousing the stock and waiting for buyers. Inevitably, the goods that go unsold end up in the landfill to make room for the next wave of shipping containers. That model was always a no-go for Gat Creek. “A sustainable manufacturing model is what we have long been about, building to order and still being competitive with international businesses,” Gat Caperton said. “Our customer wants to pay for beautiful wood, finish and craftsmanship. So that’s what we invest in and get rid of everything else.”
February 17, 2022
Gat Creek Is Expanding Factory To Build More FurnitureGat Creek is expanding our facility by 40,000 square feet to build more furniture faster and meet demand. And the work has already begun. A self-confessed manufacturing geek, Gat’s philosophy on expansions is that if you are going to add on space, add on as much as you can. The expansion will ultimately double the factory’s capacity.
July 12, 2021
Hardwood Lumber Supplies Are Plentiful And Not to Be Confused with Softwoods
Perhaps you’ve been to the lumber store recently to pick up some 2x4s or fence pickets for a repair job. There’s a good chance you experienced a mild cardiac event when you saw the prices.
“Softwoods like two by fours are up three or four times. For us, we have a short-term bump in pricing of thirty to forty percent,” said Gat Caperton. And in hardwoods, the supply side is robust.
July 12, 2021
Hard-To-Find Double Beds Are Sized Just Right For Some Bedrooms
The double bed (also called a full) may live in the shadow of the extremely popular queen-sized, but it remains the right choice for some. This is why you’ll find a double option available with every Gat Creek bed.
“I would only recommend a double for an adult who had a space issue,” said interior designer and owner of Design Associates in Wrightsville Beach, NC, Maggie Aardema. “For the amount of space difference, a queen is more comfortable and there are more bedding options for a queen bed.”