• Finishing
  • Custom Wood Finishing

    We may need a color sample if trying to match previously sold furniture since exposure of all wood finishes to Ultra Violet light will cause darkening, fading and / or discoloration. Wood finishes will also vary according to natural wood grain patterns. All natural characteristics of wood, including mineral streaks, cannot be totally avoided. These natural characteristics are not considered a flaw or a defect and cannot be returnable as such. Every effort is made, especially on natural or light finishes to select around these natural blemishes however, it is not 100% assured.


    COF (Customer’s Own Finish)

    Please allow a minimum of 10 days plus the time it takes to ship the stain sample back for approval. We require a customer provided sample at least 6” x 6” preferably on the same wood species being considered. We will then professionally match the sample using our own quality materials and assign the Category type for upcharge pricing and mixing charge. Once the finish sample is approved, the backside of the sample must be signed, photo-copied and faxed back to our office. We retain a duplicate sample with the required formula so that we may begin production once we receive signed or written approval. Some finishes can be very complex and may require additional time for trial and error to create a satisfactory match. Rates for custom finishes vary because finishes can range from very basic (simple wiping stain) to a multi-stepped process. A quote will be provided with sample.


    Category 1 Finish +5% upcharge
    1 Step Wiping Stain

    Category 2 Finish +10% upcharge
    Washcoat / Wiping Stain

    Category 3 Finish +20% upcharge
    Washcoat / Wiping Stain / Shading / Spatter

    Category 4 Finish +25% upcharge
    Washcoat / Wiping Stain / Shading and/or Watermarks, Cowtailing,
    Crayon Distress, Dry Brush, Spatter, Padding


    Costing Finish Upgrade

    Upcharge pricing is based upon the base cost of each item. Finish upcharges do not apply to upgrades. All approved custom finished products are non-returnable.


    Lead time / Strike-Off of Sample

    Please allow 3 weeks for color match. We will send a “strike-off” of the sample to you via UPS for approval. If acceptable, you can sign off on back of sample and fax back approval to us.


    Note: Natural finishes require a signed Natural Stain Waiver, available for download at www.darafeev.com/naturalstain.


  • Informational
  • Product Care Guide

    Caring for Wood Furniture

    All Darafeev products have been finished with the finest materials on the market. Along with using compliant toners, stains and other essential finishing products manufactured to the highest EPA standards along with the final finish coat which is a post catalyzed varnish, very little care is required in maintaining a Darafeev finished product.

    Heat, Humidity and Hardwoods

    It’s a fact that up to half the weight of freshly sawn wood is water. Furniture is crafted from wood that is carefully dried retaining just enough moisture for the furniture to properly acclimate to the relative humidity in your home. The wood in furniture “breathes”, taking on and releasing moisture. This results in shrinking and expanding components, and either extreme may cause splits and/or joint failure.

    Like your own skin, solid hardwood furniture’s natural response to extremely dry air is to lose moisture and shrink a bit. The halves of an extension table may part slightly and a few tiny openings may appear on a solid wood surface. This will correct itself as the relative humidity in the home rises, and the wood absorbs enough moisture to expand slightly. On the other hand, if you don’t have an air conditioner or humidifier, your home’s relative humidity may get too high. Parts of your wood furniture may absorb excess moisture from the air and expand. Under normal environmental fluctuation this will correct itself as your home’s relative humidity decreases. The furniture’s quality and sturdiness are not affected by these natural changes.

    Ensure Your Solid Hardwood Furniture’s Longevity

    • For your comfort, as well as to protect your furniture, use a humidifier or heater in the winter and an air conditioner in the summer to keep relative humidity at 25-35 percent.
    • Avoid placing furniture directly in front of radiators, heat runs, or fireplaces
    • Don’t expose hardwood furniture to continuous direct sunlight.

    With just a little TLC, genuine hardwood furniture will last a lifetime – taking good care of your solid hardwood furniture ensures its longevity. Just clean with a soft damp cloth!


  • Informational
  • Upholstery Leather

    DARAFEEV uses only fine Top Grain Leather when leather upgrade is specified. Bonded leather is available as a standard grade option, with no upcharge. Bonded leather is a low cost approach to achieving the look of leather, though it is not on par with the quality or durability of top grain leather.


    Genuine Top Grain Leather 

    The top grain is the smoothest, supplest, most natural, and best kind of furniture leather your money can buy. Each hide is as individual and unique as a fingerprint. Real, top-grain is comprised of about 12-14% water. For this reason, top-grain leather acclimates quickly to your body temperature. Leather is a natural product and thus breathes like one. Top-grain comes in two different grades: aniline and semi-aniline. Aniline is the most natural and has no protective coatings or treatments that alter its natural feel. Because of this, it’s the softest but also susceptible to stains, while semi-aniline may be coated with a protective topcoat. Many people who have experienced “sweating” on leather and are therefore turned off by the idea of leather furniture are referring to a leather product like bonded leather or vinyl.


    Bonded Leather

    “Bonded leather” a cheaper line of attack in selling the look and feel of leather for a “great deal.” Unfortunately, bonded leather is hardly leather at all—by definition, it has to be only 17% leather. So leather is to bonded leather what chicken is to chicken McNuggets (or pressboard to wood, or dryer lint to fabric): In other words, it is heavily processed. Bonded leather is made from scraps of leather that are ground up in a machine into even smaller pieces that are laid out in a long, thin layer and then adhered together with a thicker layer of polyurethane (plastic). While bonded leather, being merely a “leather product,” is used all too often in misleading customers, as retailers may try to pass it off as the real thing in order to inflate the perceived value of their product. In reality, a person sitting on bonded leather is not sitting on leather at all, only plastic. And unlike real top-grain leather, the ground-up hide and plastic will never acclimate to your body temperature or get better with age. Darafeev offers bonded leather as a standard grade upholstery option, with no upcharge. This is an inexpensive alternative to genuine leather and allows for the leather aesthetic, though the quality will not match that of top grain leather upgrade. It is not recommended for heavy use as it will wear over time.


    Bicast Leather

    Bicast leather (also known as bi-cast, bycast, or PU leather) is what most people consider the next step up. Before a hide is put into production, it is cut horizontally into layers. These layers consist of the top grain (the top layer that maintains the actual surface of the cow’s hide where the pores and hair follicles used to be) and then every split below that. Bicast leather is a layer of split which was too thin or flawed for normal use and that, like bonded leather, is completely sealed on top with a layer of polyurethane. Like bonded leather, no actual point of contact is possible between the natural leather and your skin and, therefore, bicast doesn’t demonstrate any of the same wear or comfort attributes of top-grain. Bicast and bonded leather have plastic surfaces essentially. Darafeev does not use bicast leather.


    Split Leather

    As mentioned before, a split is merely the lower layers of a hide underneath the top-grain. A split is still 100% real leather but does not have all of the characteristics of top-grain due to processing differences. When a split is made, it is initially light-colored and fuzzy or suede-like on both the top and bottom of the hide so that it won’t look like top grain. On leather furniture, the traditional top-grain leather look is shiny, has natural variations in color (as a hide is a natural product with variations in thickness and quality and, therefore, withstands dyes differently), has a smooth and soft hand (or feel), and natural “pebbling” (the unique bumps that vary depending on from which part of the cow the hide was taken). Because a split has none of these qualities, the split must be processed through various means to simulate the appearance and feel of top-grain leather. Although the result is still 100% leather, some softness is always lost through the processing procedures and natural variations in color and pebbling are no long evident as these hides are run through a uniform screen. Darafeev does not use split leather.


    Leather Matching

    Leather-matching is the practice of placing real, top-grain, 100% leather everywhere you touch on a piece of furniture (e.g. the seat, back cushions, and arms), but then filling the side panels, back panels, and the backs of the cushions with a non-leather. Darafeev does not use leather matching techniques.


    Leather and Natural Patina

    Think about it… Leather is like skin, and it will age. Top-grain leather will change colors differently than splits, splits differently than bicast leather, bicast differently than bonded, and bonded differently than vinyl. For the true leather-lover, the patina is one of the most charming qualities of the material. This is where the importance of steering clear of leather-match is evident. Because your furniture may be in your home for a long time, what started out as a subtle variation in color from the back and sides to front will eventually become an obvious mismatch.