The Cold, Hard Truth of Canadian Winters

Posted by Ty Irwin — 17 February, 2020

One of our most frequently asked questions is whether our furniture will split or crack in this dry, Alberta climate. The short answer is that our furniture is protected by a Lifetime Guarantee, and you need not worry. However, we know that the best way to offer a Lifetime Guarantee on furniture is to make furniture that doesn’t need one in the first place! So, our builders take a variety of steps to ensure that your furniture stays intact for generations.


It all starts with the wood: Each piece of wood used is kiln-dried to 7-10% moisture in the slow, traditional manner, which virtually eliminates splitting, warping, and cracking. Additionally, all wood is harvested from within 500 miles of where the craftsmen live and work, which not only lets us qualify as a member of the Sustainable Furnishings Council, but also gives the wood a head start on acclimatizing, as compared to exotic woods from tropical, high moisture climates.


And then the stabilizer: Each piece with an end-grain edge (chair seats, most importantly) is treated with a wood stabilizer known as Nelsonite, which seals off the wood from taking in or expelling excess moisture. This product is so important, that when a craftsman stopped using it, Quality Control noticed instantly, and kindly requested that he resume its use. Wood is a living, breathing material, so expansion and contraction are to be expected, but this step mitigates extreme changes.


Extra precautions: In addition to the devout application of wood stabilizer, each piece is finished with a two-part, post-catalyzed conversion varnish. This finish is outstanding in its ability to withstand regular household abuse, and is impervious to water, alcohol, and nail polish remover. Not only is the finish tough as nails, it’s low VOC and exceeds California code 93120 for off gassing (with a sticker to prove it).


Inside and out: At Simply Amish, they know you’ll like what you see, but it’s also important that you like what you don’t see. Whether it be the undersides of tables, the bottoms of chairs, or inside drawer boxes, we finish inside and out. Not only does it keep you snag free, but it keeps your furniture looking and feeling the way it did when you first picked it up. Tables don’t warp, chair seats don’t curl or wave, and drawer boxes stay square.

We know Alberta winters, and we know the damage they can cause to those who are unprepared. Let it be our promise that with a Lifetime Guarantee as solid as ours, we are most certainly prepared, whether it be an Albertan winter, or an Antarctic one.