How do I Choose the Best Pine Office Furniture?

Sheri Cyprus

Pine office furniture can be a good choice for businesses on a budget since it's often less expensive than pieces made from other woods. One of the disadvantages of pine though is that, since it's softer than hardwoods such as oak and cherry, it dents and scratches more easily. As pine office furniture is available in distinctively different looks, you should choose the type that best matches your company's style.

Businessman with a briefcase
Businessman with a briefcase

For example, knotty pine office furniture has a very rustic, informal look that just isn't going to fit into a modern skyscraper corporate office done in gleaming chrome, glass and black leather unless it's used very carefully by a skilled designer. For a home office or a business environment with a more casual tone, knotty pine can work well. It's also less likely than other types of pine to show wear because it's already so rustic looking.

For a more formal look on a budget, dark-stained pine desks, bookshelves and computer tables make a good alternative to more expensive hardwoods. The pieces should be protected with a polyurethane coating to make them more resistant to scratches and dents. Pine desks and other pieces are more likely to be found in the discount office furniture section of stores than in the executive furnishings area unless it's already finished dark pinewood. Executive office furniture is often more expensive and lavish in harder woods such as oak and cherry.

Still, pine is an attractive, more informal wood. In general, most pine furniture designed for offices tends to have fairly straight lines. Choosing chairs with more detailed design features, such as tufting on the seat or an overall pattern on the fabric, can be a smart looking accompaniment to liven up plainer pine office furniture. For a unique look, inexpensive unfinished pine office pieces can be purchased and painted or stained to your taste.

For example, painting unfinished pine in the company colors can be a great idea for more creative work spaces. It can create stimulating color and style in a work environment while keeping the budget spent on office furnishings low. You may even want to consider buying used office furniture in pine and refinishing or painting it creatively to brighten up the work environment for the lowest possible cost.

If you're considering custom office furniture in pine, it will be a more expensive option that buying the furnishings ready-made or unfinished. However, since pine is much less expensive than cherry, oak or most other woods, it may still be a cost effective option. Choosing custom pine office furniture will also ensure that the pieces will best fit the size and layout of your workplace.

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Discussion Comments


@Terrificli -- A huge advantage of pine furniture is that it is less expensive than hardwood. That is because pine trees go fast and less money is invested in growing and maintaining a pine forest. Also, it is easier to work with than hardwood because it is so soft and that means the manufacturing process isn't as expensive typically.

Keep in mind that pine is kind of halfway between hardwood furniture and that laminated, plywood stuff that you put together yourself in terms of price. You get real wood instead of plywood, but it is not as durable as hardwood.

As for durability, you can keep pine looking fine as long as you protect it. If you have a desk, then, cover those parts you use. It's not that big a deal.


The problem with pine office furniture (and any furniture made of pine) is that it is a notoriously soft wood. That means you have to be really careful with it or you will get dings, deep scuffs and all sorts of things that can age that furniture prematurely.

Want some advice? Stick with hardwood furniture. That stuff will outlast pine furniture and real hardwood furniture tends to morph into an antique at some point.

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