Shopping for furniture in Nigeria can be an exciting experience as the country offers a wide range of furniture styles, designs, and materials. If we talk about the local market, Nigeria has a long tradition of woodworking, and there are many skilled artisans and manufacturers in the country who produce high-quality furniture.
Many Nigerian furniture manufacturers use locally sourced materials like teak, mahogany, and iroko wood to create unique designs that reflect the country’s culture and heritage. These materials are known for their durability and strength, making them ideal for furniture production.
In addition, most Nigerian furniture makers use traditional techniques like hand-carving and joinery to create beautiful, intricate, functional, and aesthetically pleasing designs.
While there may be variations in quality among different furniture makers, there are certainly many talented and skilled artisans in the country who can produce furniture of exceptional quality.
In recent years, many luxury brands have also entered Nigeria’s furniture market, allowing the locals to purchase high-end luxury furniture from some of the world’s best brands.
Italian furniture, for example, is known for its exceptional quality and brands like Cattelan Italia, Naos and Gamma Arredamenti are now within the reach of Nigerians.
Of course, such high-end brands’ furniture prices are comparatively much higher, but when you compare the quality and durability of the products, they are definitely worth the price.
If you’re based in Nigeria and are looking to upgrade your home or workplace with new furniture, here are some tips to help you make the right purchase:
Determine your needs
Before you start shopping, determine what type of furniture you need and the style you prefer. Consider factors like the size of your space and the intended purpose of the furniture.
Consider your budget
It’s important to be clear about your budget and have at least a rough estimate of how much you’re willing to spend on each product. Always allocate the greatest portion of the budget to the most important item(s) in the room, especially if that furniture impacts your health. This could be, for example, the bed and the mattress in the bedroom, the sofa in the living room or the office chair in a home office.
Do your research before visiting the stores
Conduct some research to familiarise yourself with popular furniture styles, materials, and showrooms. This will help you better understand the market and make informed shopping decisions.
It’s important to look at online reviews for any showroom/brand you shortlist, as this usually gives you a good idea of their customer service. When you browse online, also do a comparative analysis of the prices.
Identifying good quality furniture
If you’re buying multiple furniture items or spending a significant amount, we usually recommend visiting the store rather than shopping online. Here are the key things to consider when you look at the products in the showroom:
- Materials: High-quality furniture is typically made from durable and robust materials like solid wood, metal, or high-grade plywood. Look for furniture made of hardwoods like oak, walnut, or teak, which are known for their longevity and resistance to wear and tear. Avoid materials like particleboard, MDF, or low-quality plywood, which may not be as durable.
- Construction: The way a piece of furniture is constructed plays a significant role in its overall quality. Look for features like:
- Joints: Dovetail, mortise-and-tenon, or tongue-and-groove joints are indicators of quality craftsmanship, as they provide a secure connection between parts without relying solely on nails or screws.
- Reinforcement: High-quality furniture often has reinforced corners, using blocks, dowels, or metal braces for added strength and stability.
- Alignment: Drawers and doors should open and close smoothly, with even gaps and proper alignment.
- Finish: A high-quality finish is essential for protecting the furniture and enhancing its appearance. Inspect the piece for a smooth, even finish without any bubbles, cracks, or rough patches. Also, pay attention to the colour consistency and any visible brushstrokes.
If the furniture is upholstered, consider the following factors:
- The fabric should be durable, resistant to fading, and easy to clean. Look for natural materials like cotton, linen, or wool or high-quality synthetics like polyester or nylon.
- Examine the stitching on the upholstery for even, straight seams and no loose threads or fraying.
- Quality furniture should have ample padding to provide comfort and maintain its shape over time. Press on the cushions and feel for consistent density and thickness.
Inspect the hardware, such as handles, knobs, and hinges, for quality and durability. High-quality hardware should be made from sturdy materials like brass, stainless steel, or zinc alloy and feel heavy to the touch.
Weight and stability: Good-quality furniture should feel durable and well-balanced. Test the stability of tables and chairs by gently rocking them back and forth to ensure there is no wobbling or unevenness.
Things to ask
Be sure to inquire about delivery and installation services, as well as any associated costs. Some retailers may offer these services for free or at a discounted rate.
It’s also essential to understand the warranty terms and after-sales support offered by the retailer or manufacturer. This information will be helpful if you need to address any issues with your furniture in the future.
Summing up, when shopping for furniture in Nigeria, it’s important to do your research, ask for recommendations, and inspect the furniture carefully to ensure that it meets your standards.