A cut above: custom millwork with Pennsylvania Cherry

November 2, 2018
Amanda Zimmerman
A cut above: custom millwork with Pennsylvania Cherry

With its rich red tones and straight grain, Cherry wood is prized by designers and builders alike, but Pennsylvania Cherry holds a particular place of distinction. The choice wood of Shakers, it graces handmade furniture as well as floors, mouldings, paneling and other custom millwork.

Not all Cherry trees are created equal

The largest of all North American Cherry trees, Black Cherry grows throughout the midwestern and eastern states. Far less prone to defect than Choke Cherry, Black Cherry, is touted for its durability and aesthetic appeal. However the source of the lumber plays a significant role in its quality and value, and in the world of Black Cherry wood, Pennsylvania Cherry is the uncontested frontrunner with the finest Cherry on the market hailing from the forests of northern Pennsylvania.

A cut above: custom millwork with Pennsylvania Cherry

Defining features of Pennsylvania Cherry

Cherry wood in general is a popular choice for quality furniture, flooring and other applications. Its smooth and uniform texture takes paint and stains well, and the wood is easy to machine. Cherry wood is durable and bendable, responding well to cutting and carving. It is an easy wood to glue, nail and work with using hand tools, and it has the added bonus of being resistant to decay.

One of the most defining characteristics of Cherry wood is its color; starting out paler when first cut, it darkens to a red hue with time and exposure to light. Pennsylvania Cherry distinguishes itself especially here, as its color matures to a deeper, richer and more lustrous red than other types of Cherry wood.

A cut above: custom millwork with Pennsylvania Cherry

The wood of choice for Shaker furniture

Shakers, a religious offshoot of the Quakers who reached their prime in the mid-19th century, valued hard work and simplicity. Their many skilled carpenters and craftsmen gave rise to a style now named for them, and today Shaker furniture is synonymous with well-made pieces of hand-crafted wooden furniture with clean lines and minimal embellishment.

The straight grain and superb workability of Pennsylvania Cherry has earned its place as the wood of choice for Shaker furniture. Characterized by minimalist design that emphasizes simplicity and the natural beauty of the wood, Shaker tables, chairs, cabinets and other pieces of custom woodworking rely heavily on the versatility and unique quality of Pennsylvania Cherry.

A cut above: custom millwork with Pennsylvania Cherry

The skilled artisans at Eisenhardt Mills are experts in highlighting the natural beauty of Pennsylvania Cherry, working deftly with the choicest pieces of lumber to produce custom millwork that honors the wood’s distinct features and adds depth and elegance to a wide range of premium handcrafted pieces.