How Many Colours of Mahogany are there?

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The term “redwood”, which refers to what is often expensive wood, covers a variety of different types of hard wood, the more well-known ones are mahogany, rosewood, ebony and sandalwood. Mahogany comes in different forms, such as white, red and black mahogany, which can be used in a variety of ways. Red mahogany is often used to make redwood furniture. The burgundy colour and the smooth and straight veins are indicative of a high-quality wood. Due to the expensive nature of this furniture, it was really only something that Hong Kong’s wealthy people could afford at the outset.

The redwood industry was once flourishing, but has now become a sunset industry. These days there is only a handful of these redwood furniture shops left. In the past, these furniture merchants would often source their materials from Macau and Taiwan to provide different wood items. As the sourcing of products came in a variety, the competition was not that keen which fostered a harmonious industry. After the Cultural Revolution in mainland China, a huge amount of antique wooden furniture was brought down to Hong Kong. Many of the items of furniture were damaged. Here furniture artisans would repair the furniture or work out ways to use the broken parts, involving certain skills of the craftsman. When they were piecing together the broken parts, they needed to identify different pieces of wood from the same era or similar colours, so as to minimise the colour difference in the piece of furniture. People who migrated abroad during the 1980s brought their furniture to the shops for fixing before they left, as they worried that no skilled craftsman would be available abroad.