Buying furniture in Indonesia

Once the long search for a home or apartment has been successfully completed, your next challenge is to furnish your new home. You may have shipped your entire household of furnishings from home or your last posting or you may be coming to Indonesia with a small air freight shipment or even with just a few suitcases.

Your home in Indonesia may be much larger than in your home country. You may be expected to entertain for business purposes and therefore may require additional furniture pieces.

If you are in need of furniture to furnish your new home, you are in luck. A wide variety of locally produced as well as imported furniture is available in Indonesia. From tropical favorites like bamboo, rattan, teak and other hard woods, to antiques, to knock-down bargain furniture, you’ll undoubtedly find what you require within your price range.

Teak wood Furniture

Indonesia has for many years supplied teak wood to some of the premier furniture manufacturers in the world. Now, much of this beautiful furniture is actually made in Indonesia! When choosing teak furniture, be sure to ask if the furniture was made with plantation grown teak wood to ensure that the teakwood was not sourced from a no virgin rainforest. Enjoy beautiful teakwood patio furniture, teakwood dining furniture and more !


Many expats enjoy the versatility of rattan furniture. With colorful tropical prints covering the cushions, rattan furniture is great for the patio as well as the living room. The lightweight nature of rattan makes it very easy to move around.

One thing to look out for are the infestations of small bugs in the rattan. If you find sawdust near your rattan furniture, you will probably need to take it out into the yard and give it a good overall spraying with bug spray. Ask the manufacturer what they do to the rattan to guard against insect infestations and what guarantees they offer that their furniture is bug free.

A full range of quality is available, so ask other expats what shops they recommend for quality rattan furniture. A manufacturer’s claim of ‘export quality’ doesn’t necessarily mean that they actually do export the products, just that they think that it is good enough to export.

Bamboo furniture

A bit heavier, but very sturdy, is furniture made from bamboo, mostly preferred for patio furniture. A long-term expat resident of Bali has been cultivating bamboo and researching many new bamboo products. We have her, and many other designers, to thank for the proliferation of different styles of bamboo furniture and other furnishings.

Upholstered furniture

Good quality upholstered furniture is also available. A comfortable sofa is probably one of the hardest things to find in Indonesia, as the motto goes … the harder the better. seems to be the norm. Fortunately, there are some manufacturers who know that most expats are taller than most Indonesians, so the sofa is built at the proper height and width.

If you’re looking for a sofa that matches your ideas of comfort, a wide variety of styles are available. Good manufacturers of sofas will offer you a choice of cushion firmness – from those that you can comfortably sink down into to ones that are extra firm with little give. Upholstering can be done with local batik or ikat (woven cloth) or imported fabric. Needless to say, the imported fabric is more expensive, an average price is about $50/meter.

Sofa beds can be found, though they don’t utilize the heavy metal framework of a typical sofa bed from the west. Instead they use thick foam padding which folds out of the sofa onto the floor.

Antique furniture

True antiques are hard to come by and the authenticity is difficult to prove. However, there are a lot of antique reproductions, sold off  Jepara,  in Central Java that are often just as beautiful as the real thing. ‘New’ furniture is often left out in the rain and sun to ‘age’ the piece.

Popular too in recent years, is the furniture that is made from antique wood. Old furniture is taken apart and the old wood is used to make ‘new’ furniture. One advantage of making furniture out of old wood is that it is much less likely to crack or be infested.

Custom-built wood furniture

It is possible to utilize the skills of master craftsmen to create pieces of furniture to fit your specific desires or needs. Finely detailed carving, beautiful woods and veneers with manufacturing to your precise specifications will ensure a piece of furniture that you can treasure for years to come. Reproductions can even be made from pictures. You can inset copper batik stamps into furniture or have specific motifs carved into furniture according to your design at The Cap Man.

Tropical hard woods are used to construct quality furniture in Indonesia. Teak, mahogany, ebony, even tigerwood burl and rosewood, and many other tropical woods are made into beautiful furnishings. Much of the teak is now plantation grown.

Be sure that your precise requirements, including measurements, are clearly communicated to the craftsman. Request a drawing, when possible, from the craftsman so that you can be more certain that you’re going to get exactly what you’ve asked for.

Of course, not all carpenters are master craftsmen, so it’s best to have good recommendations for the craftsmen before you hire them. Ask for references from other expats that they have done work for recently. Every tukang kayu (carpenter) will tell you that he can make furniture, but that does not mean that his standards of quality will match yours.

The biggest danger with the construction of new furniture, is that the wood has not been adequately kiln dried. In these cases, you will soon find your beautiful new piece of furniture with a split right through the wood. Find a furniture manufacturer that will assure you that the wood has been property kiln dried. Laying a log in the sun for weeks is not adequate to the task.

It may be difficult to obtain a guarantee against split wood from a furniture manufacturer. Be sure to get in writing whatever guarantee they offer for the furniture. Ask other expats who they recommend.

The furniture may be in good condition during your stay in Indonesia, but a crack may appear soon after your return to your home country where the humidity is much lower. Guarantees won’t do you much good when you’re on the other side of the world.

Check the completed furniture at the workshop, before it is delivered to your house. It’s much easier to refuse delivery at the workshop, until your specifications are met, than to be faced with the delivery men trying to carry your new sofa in your front door.

Other furniture

Wrought iron furniture is also available, in a variety of styles.

European designer furniture and even La-Z-Boys are available, but at a very high price tag. Most expats opt for locally produced furniture.

Knock-down furniture is available and provides an inexpensive alternative to solid wood furniture. Made of pressed wood and wood veneers, the styles are simple and practical. It’s especially practical for children’s rooms.

Leather furniture is also available, some of export quality.

Closets and wardrobes

One distinctive feature of Indonesian homes is their lack of built-in storage space. If your new home features bare walls throughout, you will probably want to have a wall unit or other cupboards constructed for each bedroom as well as an entertainment unit made for the living room or dining room area. Some homes that are leased to expatriates already have these lemari in many rooms. When you tour prospective homes, ask if the furniture stays, or if the landlord can make closets for each bedroom.

Bedroom furniture

Mattresses with springs are called ‘spring beds’ in Indonesia. They feature an all-in-one mattress with coil springs underneath the mattress. Separate mattress and box springs aren’t available. One caution about mattresses – they are not necessarily made to standard international measurements. If you decide to buy a bed in Indonesia, but bring your sheets from home, you may find that the sheets don’t fit. In that case, it’s better to bring flat sheets so that fitted sheets can easily be sewn up from them to fit your new beds.

Also, most spring beds in Indonesian will not accommodate very tall people. If a family member is over 6 feet (2 meters) that person may feel more comfortable in a bed brought from home that will accommodate their length.

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What are teak wood

What are teak wood grades and why they are important

Teak grade is a common way of determining teak wood’s quality and therefore pricing. Teak furniture usually indicates the grade of the wood used to make it. The grades that teak wood may have are A, B or C where A has the highest quality and price while C is the lowest quality and pricing.

Teak wood graded A is wood is taken from the heart of the trunk where teak oil is more concentrated. Also A grade teak has more silica and rubber making it more resistant to water and insects.

Coming from the heart of the teak log also means that you wont find knots on the wood. This means that the wood’s texture is more uniform and resistant. Color is also deeper boasting a gorgeous golden brown difficult to find. A grade teak wood is about ten times more expensive than than C or B grade teak. Less than 20 percent of a teak tree is considered A grade teak.

Teak wood graded B is also great. Its quality is not as high as A grade teak but its still fine for furniture. B grade teak wood is taken from the outer part of the heart of the tree. It still has a good concentration of natural oil. The color is a bit lighter than the one you find in A grade teak wood. The touch is not as smooth and is less shiny than A grade.

C grade teak is taken from the outer part of the teak log. It is the lowest quality teak that you will find, also the cheaper. Many cheap Teak furniture is made from this type of wood. Knots and flaws are common. The grain is not so tight making this grade of teak a bit less resistant than B and A grade teak. C grade teak is still a great wood. It is waterproof and very resistant to insects but the overall wood quality is a bit lower.

Teak wood is always a great choice, however, whenever possible you should consider buying the highest grade you can afford to ensure you are getting the best in quality.

You Can Buy Various High Quality Teak Garden Furniture Products from Suar Wood Furniture and Antique, Classic furniture


Choosing hardwood teak floors


If you are planning to give your floors a major facelift, and you are considering to replace them with hardwood floors, we strongly suggest you to considere engineered teak floors instead of the regular teak floorings offered in the market.

While engineered teak floors are a bit more expensive when you buy, they are way more cheaper on the long term, as they reduce installation costs as the process is long way faster, and engineered teak floors also require less maintenance than ordinary hardwood teak floors.

The main difference between standard teak floors and the engineered ones is that they come finished from the factory, making the whole installation proces fast, and require less labor. Being finished at the factory also means that all required treatments have been applied in a professional way. The overall look and feel of both engineered and standard teak floors is just the same.

When you take into consideration that all the blocks of standard teak hardwood floors need to be treated, sanded and finished you will understand that the whole process can easily take several days depending on the area you want to cover. Sometimes you need to apply some products to achieve the right look that you are looking for, and from time to time, you will also need the help of highly trained professionals. Engineered teak floors simplify the installation process to the point that almost anyone with little experience can install the floor.

People is usually confused and think that engineered teak floors are of inferior quality because they usually think of laminated floors. Laminated teak floors aren’t made of hardwood, but a composition of melamine infused paper and some teak wood chips, if you think again, laminated is very different to hardwood.

Hardwood teak flooring is made of real teak wood, and repeating what we said earlier, engineered and standard are just the same but only one has been previously sanded and finished for your convenience.

Something that I almost forgot to tell you is that standard teak floors also require aditional supplies, for example aditives that will help the floors to maintain it’s original look and resist daily wear and tear. However if you are on the group that enjoys the “Do It Yourself” standard teak floors are the way to go.

Take your time to consult prices and then do the math. Standard teak floors are cheaper, but will require a lotof work to get prepared, and obviously a more specialized installation wich will elevate your initial costs. On the other hand, engineered teak floors are a bit more expensive when you buy the pieces, but they require less effort and knowledge to be installed, this means less time, and less money spend on the installation.

We hope that this post helps you understand the difference between this two types of floors so that you can make an informed decision when buying hardwood floors.

You Can Buy Various High Quality Teak Garden Furniture Products from Suar Wood Furniture and Antique, Classic furniture


Clean and Maintain Your Outdoor Furniture

Regular cleaning and maintenance keep outdoor furniture looking its best. As outdoor furniture and outdoor accessories are available in a variety of materials, each may require a different method for its care.

General Cleaning and Maintenance Tips

  • Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and try to keep the instructions where you can easily access them for reference.
  • Most outdoor furniture can be cleaned with mild soap and water.
  • An application of car wax can be used to protect frames.

Wicker Furniture

Most wicker furniture can be cleaned using a hose or pressure washer. Remove the cushions before you spray off dirt and spills.

  • For very dirty wicker, use a sponge, mild soap and cold water to wash. Let it dry completely before applying a paste wax to the frame to help keep it shiny and water-resistant.
  • It is easier to care for weather resistant wicker, so look around before you buy. Store cushions indoors and use a cover for the frames when it is not being used.

Wood Furniture

Wood furniture usually requires exterior grade varnish to protect it from the elements.

  • Outdoor wood furniture that has been coated with an exterior-grade varnish can be cleaned using soapy water. Follow it by completely rinsing it out with clean water.
  • Except for teak and cedar all other wood furniture should be stored indoors during winter.

Resin or Plastic Furniture

Plastic furniture is the easiest to maintain.

  • Spray off dirt with clean water and allow to air dry.
  • Scuff marks can be removed with a gentle abrasive.
  • Remove mildew with a mixture of one cup bleach, two cups detergent and one gallon of water.

Aluminum, Wrought Iron and Steel Furniture

Metal furniture is easy to maintain, but care should be taken that it does not begin to rust.

  • Clean with water and mild soap.
  • Many modern metal frames are rust-resistant or rust-free. If your metal furniture is not, paste wax or naval jelly can be used to protect from corroding or rusting.
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