- story by MaterialDistrict
Marquetry patterns are composed of different materials, usually natural products such as wood veneer, straw, leather, mother-of-pearl and semi-precious stones, but also precious and nonprecious metals and glass. An endless palette of colours and textures is available, and everything that nature or technology have to offer can be incorporated into the final product.
Marquetry, also known as intarsia, can be applied in many variations, and is individual and timeless. From modern to traditional, geometric to Art Deco, arabesque or abstract, neoclassical to antique – marquetry runs the gamut of virtually all styles. Today, marquetry is a combination of cutting-edge technology, patience and unsurpassed craftsmanship. The basic elements are defined with computer techniques, and then processed with great precision using a laser cutter. Intermediate treatment with traditional techniques is sometimes required. Shading in hot sand is an example of this, as is applying accent lines.
Every segment, no matter how small, must be inserted into the basic pattern in the exact right place and manner. Pieces are removed from the basic element and replaced with contrasting or complementary parts. Structure, direction of grain and colour nuances are the most important variables in this context. Once a marquetry element is complete, it is applied to the background surface. This surface can be anything from furniture or wall and ceiling elements to figures on floors and doors or even loose decorative elements. Using different pressing techniques, the images are applied to the surface and, when required, can be finished with varnish and sanding treatments until the desired end result is achieved.