Classification and Characteristics of Furniture

2.1 Characteristics of Furniture

Furniture is objects of applied arts intended for mobile and permanent furnishing of residential interiors. Among other things, it serves for storage, work, eating, sitting, lying down, sleeping and relaxing. Furniture can be used individually, in suites or sets.

A furniture suite (Fig. 2.1) is a collection of articles, often of different features, but with a similar purpose, having identical or very similar aesthetic form. They are made through the implementation of a specifically determined design work, in which goal might be, for example, furniture for the dining room: in a flat, residence or hotel. A characteristic feature of a suite is that individual pieces of furniture can be combined according to different, but logical rules. The following criteria for completing suites are most frequently adopted: type of material, wood species, type of surface finish, place of use of the furniture, and the historical period in which the furniture was made or what period it refers to stylistically. A lounge suite can consist of two or three armchairs, two double sofas or two corner reclining sofas. A suite is also three armchairs, pouffe and reclining double sofa. Another suite can be a corner reclining sofa and an armchair with a container. A suite for storage can consist of a clothes cupboard, a library bookcase, a bar and glass case, as well as a dresser, chest of drawers, glass case and cabinet. A suite for the dining room can include a dresser, cabinet, dining table, chairs and side table. A kitchen suite usually consists of upper and lower cabinets or built-in cabinets, but may be supplemented with a table and chairs, buffet or bar. A suite of office furniture can consist of a series of filing cabinets, shelves for files, cabinets with sliding shutters, work tables with chairs and dividing walls. A suite of study furniture can include a desk, side table, armchair, wardrobe, library bookcase and table with chairs.

A furniture set (Fig. 2.2) can contain both individual furniture pieces and fur­niture suites. Furniture constituting a set, unlike furniture included in suites, may have a different purposes and different aesthetic and structural forms.

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015 47

J. Smardzewski, Furniture Design,

DOI 10.1007/978-3-319-19533-9_2

Classification and Characteristics of Furniture
Classification and Characteristics of Furniture

However, they can be grouped together in sufficiently harmonious collections. A characteristic feature of a set is that the individual furniture pieces or suites were created independently of each other and were not the product of a coherent idea of one designer or team of designers.