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Wonder Wood Veneer

The production of the first wood veneer dates back to the early 1800s in North America. The French Sanson Vallette and Gardean started producing veneers in 1870 and the Italian firm Cremona followed in 1901 with the first horizontal wood veneer machine.

Veneers are thin wood sheets cut from round timber. Strips are joined by paper, string or glue. Glued to a substrate (MDF, particleboard, multilaminar or honeycomb), veneers are suitable for the mass production of lighter, more stable and less expensive furniture than solid wood products.

Veneers also allow for the use of a wider range of wood species in a more extensive way and contribute to reducing the consumption of solid wood, especially tropical species and higher-value wood like briar, pommele and frisé.

The firm Tabu, which today employs over 150 workers on an area of 70,000 square metres and exports to over 60 countries, was originally based on an idea of the founder Achille Tagliabue: replace the traditional method of staining the finished piece of furniture to achieve the desired effect, with the application of a slice of wood veneer of uniform colour, in other words, colouring the whole surface before applying it.

Since then the entrepreneurial abilities of the Tagliabue family – now in the third generation – and their in-depth knowledge of the raw material have been combined with original forms and colours, with innovation in materials and production techniques and enhanced by direct collaboration with customers and architects.

This is accompanied by a strong awareness of the needs of man and the environment. The journey began in 2003 when Tabu was awarded FSC© certification (the mark for wood products originating in eco-sustainable forests) and continued in 2009 with the launch of Ecozero®, the new Tabu line of environmentally friendly multilaminar wood veneer, which had led to another important goal: from the second half of 2010 the whole production of multilaminar wood flooring will use glues free from formaldehyde emissions.

For Tabu sustainability is a question of choice of raw materials (wood certified 100% by FSC, atoxic glues, water-based dyes), of woodworking techniques and day-to-day operations, such as the purifying plant for waste water, the gas-fired heating plant and the regeneration of wood waste to create other products or to produce heat. The new catalogues are produced in recycled or FSC© certified paper.

Natural and painted wood veneers offer designers and manufacturers unlimited possibilities in terms of creativity and industrial applications.

Both the mechanical and aesthetic performances are good, thanks to high dimensional stability, colour uniformity and grain consistency. Decorative patterns and textures can meet all the requirements of today's interior decoration.

Among Tabu's more recent realizations on an international scale are the Armani Hotel in Dubai, the Park Hyatt in Shanghai (see below) and the MGM City Center in Las Vegas, which uses the new multilaminar wood veneer line suitable for all interior decoration. As a certified sustainable and non-toxic material, Ecozero® meets the LEED standards (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) for environmental sustainable construction.


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