George’s Difference – Viewing Your Own Handcrafted Furniture
The next time you visit Lancaster, PA we want to give you a tour of our shop where each piece of our solid wood furniture is handcrafted & custom made. Yes, it is true! We love bringing guests on a tour of our wood-working shop. Quite honestly, that is what makes us different from nearly any other furniture shop you can think of.
Of course, it is not just a tour of some automated wood shop. You see our craftsmen at work, literally drilling, planing, and staining with the tools in their hands to produce your perfect handcrafted solid wood furniture. Actually, we invite not only our guests but any customer with any order in progress to schedule a time to visit & watch their furniture crafted by hand right in front of their very eyes. That was how Tom & Karen found us!
See furniture order handcrafted
“My wife and I had been furniture shopping for over a year and decided it was time to buy. While my wife was getting ready, I decided to make one last internet search for Lancaster County furniture stores. I was positive that we had already visited every furniture store so I was not optimistic about finding something new. George’s Furniture appeared on a list of stores we had previously visited, some of them multiple times. They were located near Maytown so I clicked on their website.” -Tom
The beauty of creating custom handmade furniture is that we can support your vision in a way that works for you, instead of just selling you assembly line, machine-made furniture.
Perhaps you need a dining table that is large enough to host all your children & grandchildren for a holiday meal. Maybe you are looking for a bedroom set that can become a family heirloom & add to the beauty of your home. In the professional setting, we even love designing executive desks & conference tables. (Did you know we even designed a conference table for the Pentagon?)
Beginning the handcrafted furniture process
“We were met by Anthony upon our arrival. After explaining what we were looking for, he expertly guided us through all the options. When ordering custom made furniture there are lots of decisions to make. After several hours our order was finalized.” -Tom
Tom and Karen worked with our designers to create the perfect dining set to meet their specific needs and interests. They also scheduled an appointment to see their furniture in process.
As we walked them through the tour, they saw the chairs ready for assembly. The artisan carefully placed glue into the precisely angled holes drilled into the seat for the chair legs. Tom and Karen observed the chair leveling process to make sure the chair would sit level in their home.
“I didn’t realize that so much work goes into making furniture.” — Tom
The finished table waited in the completed area. In the wood shop, they could see the other pieces of their set in progress too. A bench sat ready for assembly. The glued together coffee table wood top was ready for its next step of shaping and edge routing. The stained pantry waited for the final clear water-resistant coat of catalyzed conversion varnish.
Assembly lines vs handcrafted
Several minutes into the tour, Tom asked about the difference between George’s furniture process and other furniture manufacturing.
He referred to the cost and time difference of mass production assembly lines. We know many of our customers & guests wonder the same thing.
To be quite honest, mass production uses automated production lines and large sheets of plywood and particleboard in the construction. Since their focus is often on quantity over quality, they spend little time on matching grain or on preparing the wood well for assembly. We take the extra time of planing, cutting, and gluing the solid wood pieces together. That is what makes our process so different.
The path to quality
Handcrafted custom furniture made at George’s shop displays the careful attention to the wood grain, design, durability, and strength of the construction. Can I walk you through our complete process?
- Each artisan selects properly dried solid wood boards & cuts them to length. They use a jointer in their preparation process to make the boards flat, square & easy to assemble together (You can find out more about how jointers work here.) A thickness planer is also an essential part of this process to prepare the board & ensure that it is the same thickness all the way around the board. (The thickness planer is explained more here.)
- The furniture is ready for assembly after construction of all the individual parts. All those individual parts often include legs, skirts, tops, sides, solid wood drawers (fronts, sides, bottom), raised panel doors, rungs, seats, chair top, tongue-groove backing, etc.
- Next, they stain it and apply a clear coat of finish. The artisan signs and dates their finished piece before an all-over light sanding and final application of water-resistant clear coat of spray-top to bottom, inside and out. We actually asked our previous customers if they can still see the signature on their piece & these are the photos they shared with us.
- The final step in assembly is installing the hardware such as knobs & handles on drawers, adding in the table slides (our extension table is one of our most popular products actually!), and completing the tongue and groove backing.
- Last stop is the storage area where the finished product waits for the completion of the other pieces in the order. For example, maybe you have ordered a full dining table & chairs set like many of our other customers. Maybe you even ordered a bedroom suite of a bed, night stand & chest of drawers. This final waiting area is where we collect all pieces of an order before we deliver the complete set to the customer’s house.
Time to enjoy your gorgeous handcrafted furniture
“Our furniture was recently delivered and we are very happy with all the pieces. They are gorgeous and exactly as we ordered. The entire process from beginning to end was very pleasant and trouble free. We visited the shop and saw several of our pieces while in production. In closing, my wife and I would like to sincerely thank everyone at George’s Furniture.” – Tom & Karen
This is what makes us different from any other furniture shop you have visited. You set the vision & we are happy to share our catalog of creations if you need inspiration. Then you can tour our shop to watch our master woodworkers bring your vision to life. Finally you get to enjoy quality, handcrafted furniture that will last your family for decades.
To help you start this process to high quality, handcrafted furniture, we created this handy checklist to spot high-quality furniture. Download the checklist here so you know what to avoid in your furniture shopping. Then call us when you are ready to design your own custom, handcrafted piece.
It all started when Bob and Rachel visited their friend’s home. They noticed beautiful furniture skillfully placed around the living space. Furniture of this quality is hard to find. However, after years of searching, they finally found it right in their friends home. When questioned where the beautiful furniture came from, their friends ecstatically shared the journey that ended at George’s Furniture, Marietta, PA.
Bob had a remodeling project scheduled. After four years the new addition neared completion. Subsequently, they planned a trip to Lancaster County. A beautiful drive from Vermont to Pennsylvania brought Bob and Rachel to George’s Furniture’s showrooms and the wood working shop. During a wood shop tour, Bob and Rachel saw the craftsmen skillfully creating quality heirlooms. Finally they knew this was the birthplace of their new dining room furniture.
Built your way
They met with Anthony and started the journey of designing their desired dining space. After the order was placed and the waiting began. As an added benefit, Anthony sent several pictures of their furniture progression through the wood shop in the different build stages.
“Anthony did a fantastic job of working with us patiently while we determined what we wanted even to the point of thinking outside the box of choices to design the legs of the hall tree to match the table legs.”
Upon completion, the delivery personnel carefully blanket wrapped the furniture and skillfully placed it in the van for its trip to Vermont. A warm and excited reception greeted Chris and Juanita after a long 8 hour trip in the delivery van. Several neighbors eagerly waited, ready with open arms to transport the table, chairs, table leaf storage, large hutch, buffet, hall tree and 2 non-tip rocking chairs into the house.
“We knew the kind of quality we could expect but when the dining room furniture arrived, we were blown away by the quality of each piece individually and how the whole room of furniture fit together.”
Quality on Display
Rachel’s excitement exploded as she shared their journey discovering George’s Furniture. She looks forward to gathering everyone around the same table in their newly remodeled dining room. Bob and Rachel joined the family of George’s satisfied customer that can’t contain their excitement and love for their furniture. Join the family and create you next new piece of furniture. Come and see where your furniture is built or contact us to started the journey.
Commitment to Quality
From the beginning, George’s Furniture is committed to create quality, hardwood furniture, crafted by a single craftsman and safely delivered to the customer’s home. As a child, I heard George lament over customers requests to cut costs by utilizing a commercial delivery service. As a result, the furniture arrived in poor condition. Nothing matches the quality of furniture delivered and assembled by individuals who understand its design.
A typical delivery includes transportation from George’s Furniture to the customer’s home. The cost per mile includes assistance of George’s delivery driver. The customer will provide at least one individual to help carry furniture into the home. Additional delivery personnel can be requested at an additional cost.
Affordable Safe Delivery by George’s Personnel
George’s Furniture groups deliveries, going to a similar region, together to help customers share delivery costs. While viewing one of George’s 15 passenger vans holding 4-5 separate orders headed for a region, one person commented, “That looks like a tight fitting puzzle.” Yes, each piece is blanket wrapped and packed with care. During difficult corner maneuvers, desks and other large pieces are placed on their sides, protected by thick furniture blankets and escorted to their desired location.
Up Elevators, Over Balconies
Over the past 45 years of delivering furniture, we have encountered challenging situations navigating around unique house layouts. Creativity, persistence and strong skills in spatial relations served us well, resulting in satisfied customers. One challenging occasion, an executive desk was delivered to a customer’s home. Although George’s Furniture is designed to fit through a standard 30” door, this door was narrower. The delivery/craftsman personnel quickly ascertained that the feet could unscrew from the desk and the base placed on its side to maneuver into the office. A few minutes later, the reassembled desk brought delight of another satisfied customer.
A customer living Manhattan purchased two hutches. The flexibility built into George’s Furniture paid off when the elevator servicing the multi-story building was small. George’s design allowed the hutch tops to be disassembled from the bases. Each of the four sections fit snugly into the elevator. After 4 trips up and down the elevator, all parts arrived safely to the apartment. George’s delivery man secured the screws between the Hutch’s top and bottom as the delighted customer viewed the new edition.
Flexible designs inspired
Building flexible designs is a work in progress. During the early 1970’s, George designed a king size poster canopy bed. Upon delivery to her home, it was discovered that the hallways were too small to maneuver the large bed into the bedroom. She was so taken by its design that she stated, “I’ll just keep the bed and build a bedroom around it.” Following this experience, George redesigned the structure, allowing the bed to be a designed in smaller sections without compromising the strength of the bed.
An Ounce of Prevention….Measure
George’s delivery personnel are creative, however they do not know the dimensions of your home. Please measure all hallways, rooms and stairways along the path to the desired destination. I recall stories of a desk or bed entering a house over a outside balcony because the custom piece would not fit through the interior hallways or up the steep narrow stair steps. Pieces can be designed with increased flexibility, but these details should be discussed during the design process. George’s Furniture designers work hard to take all aspects into consideration when working along side our customers, Contact us to begin the design of your next new piece of furniture.
Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Indiana are home to the largest Amish Communities in the United States. The Amish lifestyle consists of plain clothes, horse and buggy, no electricity, one-room schoolhouses, and farming. Over the years they developed a reputation for their quality quilts, furniture, baked goods, and produce. In fact, in 2015, about 8.34 million visitors to Lancaster County directly spent $1.97 billion, creating a total tourism impact of $2.64 billion in the county.
Over time, marketing replaced craftsmanship. While a few Amish craftsmen are still producing quality furniture, many stores market Amish furniture devoid of the quality buyers expect. As the perception of the quality Amish furniture increases, the natural result is an increase in demand. This increase brought new systems and processes which dropped the quality of the product. They compromised when materials such as cheaper stains, protective coatings, glue, or hardware. They left the old process of construction behind while newer methods of cheap assembly take over. These newer methods, which use assembly lines and computerized machines, compromise excellence for the convenience of efficiency. Consequently, the quality of hardwood furniture is lost along with the buyers ability to customize their product.
Furniture experts pinpoint pieces displaying true quality, handmade Amish furniture. The untrained eye, however, sees little or no distinction. While Amish craftsmen are talented, rarely is the resulting piece considered by furniture experts as constructed by a Master Craftsman. Why does this matter? Furniture crafted by a Master Craftsman ultimately become heirlooms.
Heirlooms are pieces constructed to withstand the test of time and passed down to the next generation. Furniture designed, crafted, and assembled by master craftsmen endure the normal wear and tear of daily life. While George’s craftsmen are not Amish furniture makers, we are Master Craftsmen. George’s master craftsmen build each piece to suit the needs of the buyer now and in the future. Forever cherished assets.
At George’s Furniture, one craftsman uniquely crafted each piece – signed and dated. 100% Pennsylvania hardwood construction—no plywood here! Each item is built-to-order, custom made to your specifications. Visit our showrooms and see the furniture manufacturing! Time-tested construction for over 50 years…that’s the George’s difference.
George’s Furniture Featured at Sugarloaf
The Sugarloaf craft show season will be here before you know it and George’s Furniture is thrilled to be part of it again this fall. We meet so many wonderful people and we have so much fun showing off all the wonderful pieces we’ve created. See current show/events schedule.
The Festival brings together over 300 talented artists from across America displaying their creations and attracts over 200,000 total shoppers each year. Shoppers enjoy the unique experience of fine craftsmanship all under one roof and can choose to come for one day or all three. Come meet the artists who are excited to share their passion!
Discover Skilled Artists near you!
- October 12-14, Timonium, MD
- October 19-21, Chantilly, VA
- November 2-4, Oaks, PA
- November 9-11, Edison, NJ
- November 16-18, Gaithersburg, MD
- December 7-9, Chantilly, VA
Check current show/event schedule
Some items you can look forward to seeing from George’s Furniture. This year we’ll be showcasing our NEW LED light. The Cascading Lamp features a levered construction with an LED light illuminating the natural wood grain of the levels below. This design is reminiscent of the beautiful style found at Frank Lloyd Wright’s Falling Waters House. Display a favorite picture, medal, or keepsake on the smaller shelf while enjoying the ambient light and natural beauty. The levered design is also available as a modern wall shelf.
Famous Extension Table
Our world famous extension table will be on display, come experience an extension table that begins as a 4 person table for small gatherings but can later extend over 13 ft with ease and gracefulness to accommodate families and friends. Our table is so easy to open, you simply just grab the end of the table and open the table to your desired length. Seating everyone around one table has never been easier and more comfortable. Stop by our booth to see first hand the natural wood grain beauty and craftsmanship characteristic of George’s furniture.
Can’t attend, come see us in Lancaster, PA
If you can’t make it out to the festival this year, don’t worry! We’re happy to meet you in our showroom and show you these lovely items one-on-one.
Hope to see you out at the Festival!