Years ago there was only one species that dominated the rustic category: Knotty Pine. However, rustic as a design is trending and a number of species are now used to provide the rich qualities that go along with the style.

For example, in addition to the traditional western species of Alder, Idaho White Pine and Western Red Cedar, eastern species such as Maple, Cherry, Red Oak, Hickory and Walnut are being specified for rustic flair.

Rustic has also shifted the mindset of those who supply and produce panels. Veneer suppliers have always strived to provide the cleanest veneers possible. It was a challenge to teach them that in the case of rustic, we wanted as much character as possible. That’s a complete 180-degree shift in philosophy.

Here’s more on the rustic trend:

Definition: Rustic is a veneer arrangement that maximizes character in its appearance. For example, heartsap contrast and knots make that veneer more desirable in some cases. Most of the time rustic veneers are planked matched but occasionally we do find some rustic whole piece veneers.

Cherry, Walnut, and Red Oak are plain sliced and planked matched.

Uses: Rustic veneers are used almost exclusively in kitchen cabinets. The other use case is with store fixtures. The Rocky Mountain region uses the most rustic material; however, rustic is becoming more widespread in other U.S. areas and Canada.

Advantages: Rustic is a good value for the cost. Usually, it’s less expensive than A-grade material.

Did you know? European Steamed Beech has some rustic configurations. Beech is more color consistent across the face than North American species. In addition, Hickory has a sharp contrast between heartwood and sapwood, and this calico appearance is a most desirable appearance for rustic.

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