Wood is a naturally beautiful product that is used in many applications, ranging from general construction to furniture making, cabinetry, flooring, and more.
Woodworking involves selecting the most stunning types of wood and crafting them into beautiful and strong products. ‘Stunning’ is the key term here. Though all types of wood are beautiful, only some are absolutely stunning or gorgeous and deserve to be called ‘exotic.”
Exotic wood is also the term used for timber species that are rarer than others.
Exotic wood species are commonly used for making premium furniture, art, craft, and decorative items. They are usually rare and more expensive than regular wood. In this article, you’ll learn about the most famous types of exotic or rare woods in the world.
Features of Exotic Woods
Wondering what makes wood exotic?
The uniqueness of exotic woods lies in their rare & attractive colour combinations, higher durability, classic appearance, and rare availability. These wood types are generally easy to maintain and are more expensive than regular wood.
One of the core characteristics of exotic woods is that they are naturally attractive and aesthetically pleasing. This is also the reason why they are a popular choice for making exotic wood products.
Durability is another feature of exotic woods. These woods can be extremely durable in terms of resistance to moisture and insects. They can easily last up to 100 or more years if cared for properly. That said, exotic woods require little maintenance as they do not warp or wear & tear easily.
Exploring Different Types of Exotic Woods
1. African Padauk
African padauk (scientific name: Pterocarpus soyauxii) is an exotic hardwood found in the tropical forests of Africa. It is known for its exciting reddish-orange colour and unique grain patterns which make it a popular wood among wood crafters & artists.
The natural colour of padauk gets darker with age to give it a richer, deeper look, which is favoured by woodworkers.
Padauk is also famous as one of the strongest and most durable woods. It is quite durable in terms of resistance to decay, which helps ensure it can survive even in harsh conditions and has a long life.
African padauk is easy to work with and is commonly used for furniture, musical instruments, carving, cabinetry, flooring, and decorative items.
Mahogany is a glamorous and extremely popular exotic wood known for its exceptional physical properties and appearance. Its rich reddish-brown colour and unique grain patterns make mahogany stand out as a stunning choice for a range of applications including premium furniture, musical instruments, and decorative articles.
It is a tropical hardwood that brags durability in terms of good resistance to decay and damage. It is also a very stable wood which doesn’t easily warp or shrink. Woodworkers love mahogany for its ease of cutting, carving, turning, and finishing. Due to all these features, mahogany is one of the most popular and expensive woods out there.
3. Black Locust
Black Locust is a phenomenal exotic wood known for its strength and durability. With a spectacular golden-brown colour and uniquely beautiful grain patterns, it can fit any project or requirement.
Black Locust is highly resistant to decay, insects, and moisture, which makes it an ideal choice for outdoor applications like outdoor furniture and decking. As a highly stable hardwood, it is resistant to warping. Black Locust is also environmentally friendly and can last very long with little maintenance, making it a popular choice for projects where beauty and reliability are major requirements.
Canary is another popular exotic wood types that is famous for its vibrant colours and incredible properties. Its colour ranges from pale yellow to reddish-brown and the wood is known for its unique eye-catching grain pattern, which can be strikingly varied, including waves, stripes, and mottled patterns.
Canary wood is also famous as a wood that is very durable and naturally resistant to decay, which means it can also be used for exterior applications, including furniture, flooring, and decking and also to make premium decorative items. Canary wood is also easy to work with and can be easily cut, shaped, and finished.
5. Desert Ironwood
Desert Ironwood is one of the most famous exotic woods prized for its exceptional strength and hardness. The hardwood is native to the southwestern United States and Mexico. It features a gorgeous dark brown to reddish-brown hue and has rich black streaks all over its surface.
Desert Ironwood is a very hard and durable wood, which is resistant to wear and can be used for making tool handles, furniture, and crafting projects. It is a beautiful wood that maintains its appearance for a long time thanks to its natural oils.
Jarrah is a fascinating exotic wood that is found in Australia. Favoured for its rich reddish-brown colour and gorgeous & unique grain patterns, this wood is also exceptionally hard and durable. Jarrah is resistant to rot, termites, and moisture and can be seamlessly used in outdoor applications like furniture, decking and fencing.
Jarrah is also a fire-resistant wood that is commonly used for making fireproof buildings & items. With its attractive looks and incredible strength, Jarrah is also a great choice for flooring, furniture, and interior trim.
7. Chakte Viga
Chakte Viga is an impressive exotic wood that is native to Central America. Its remarkable colour hue ranging from lively orange to reddish-brown impresses wherever the wood is used. The wood has a fine texture and straight grain, which makes it easy to work with.
This hardwood has amazing durability and is also resistant to decay and weathering, which makes it ideal for both indoor and outdoor applications. The wood cuts and finishes smoothly. Woodworkers love this wood for its vibrant looks and use it for everything from furniture making to cabinetry and decorative accents.
Bamboo is a wood that is made from a type of grass. It is known for its variety and sustainability. It is light-coloured and has distinctive nodes and can be used for projects where natural classiness is required such as furniture, flooring, and construction.
Bamboo is also favoured as a renewable wood resource that grows rapidly and can be harvested with minimal water and pesticides. It is eco-friendly, strong, durable, and flexible, which makes it suitable for practically every woodworking project.
Mopane wood, which comes from the southern regions of Africa, is known for its outstanding durability and unusual grain pattern. This hardwood is reddish-brown, very dense and hard.
It is also famous for its excellent resistance to decay and termites and is also resistant to fire. Mopane wood is commonly used for flooring, crafting, decking, and furniture. Its hard & durable structure ensures the longevity of wood items made from it.
Ebony is native to tropical Africa and is also found in some parts of Asia. It is a type of black wood and has been a popular choice for furniture and musical instruments for many centuries. The hardwood colour is jet black and its fine texture makes it easy to work with machines. The wood is extremely heavy and dense. It has a natural lustre which adds to its beauty.
As one of the hardest woods in the world, Ebony is favoured for making strong and long-lasting objects like furniture. It is a water-resistant wood and suitable for outdoor applications as well.
11. Burmese Blackwood
Burmese Blackwood, which is native to Southeast Asia, is particularly known for its mesmerising beauty and unique grain patterns. Considered one of the most prized exotic woods, it is commonly used for making high-quality furniture.
Burmese Blackwood is also known for its unique & beautiful grain pattern. It is a popular wood for musical instruments and carving.
Katalox, an exotic wood found in Central and South America, is known for its stunning colour blends of deep purples and dark browns. This hardwood is also famous for its remarkable strength and durability. This dense and strong wood is a common choice for flooring, furniture, cabinetry, and fine woodworking.
It is naturally resistant to decay and insects, which makes it a good choice for outdoor use. Katalox is considered exotic for its distinct beauty and amazing robustness that can give a touch of elegance to any space.
Bocote is a hardwood that comes from Central and South America. It’s a beautiful-looking, strong and durable wood that is particularly famous for its distinct grain pattern. It is commonly used for making high-end furniture and other heavy-duty applications.
If you are looking for a wood that can make your project stand out, this is a good choice. It is strong and hard but also very easy to work with. However, you should also know that Bocote is one of the rare and expensive hardwoods, though you can find and buy it online easily.
Where to Buy Exotic Timber Online?
White Knight Consulting Ltd. is your one-stop destination to buy different exotic wood types at the best price online. With more than 20 years of experience in the timber industry, we are trusted by wood merchants and woodworkers all over the globe for a steady supply of premium-quality wood with guaranteed on-time delivery.
You can now buy many exotic wood species directly from the White Knight Consulting website or call us to place your order.