How To Tell If A Dresser Is Good Quality Furniture

how to tell if dresser is high quality furniture good piece

When spending your money on something as expensive as a dresser, it’s important to ensure that what you’re receiving is good quality. It would be horrible to buy a dresser you absolutely love, only to find issues with it when you get it home or, even worse, have it break on you in under a year. 

How do you make sure the dresser you’re buying is good quality, though? So many furniture pieces look the same, it can be hard to sort out the well-made ones from the bad ones. To identify a high-quality dresser, you need to know a little bit about how dressers are constructed (or should be constructed). 

If you’re on the hunt for a great dresser, take some time to inspect the things that aren’t easily spotted with a quick glance like the material, hardware, and construction. Here is a list of some elements to check for that indicate how well your dresser was made. 

5 Ways To Know If A Dresser Is High Quality

1. The Wood 

Ideally, your dresser should be solid wood and kiln-dried. What does this mean? Kiln-dried wood has had all the moisture removed. This makes the wood extremely strong and durable, and less likely to deteriorate over time. There should not be any fiberboard on or inside the dresser, as this is a strong indicator that it was made cheaply. Fiberboard is thinner and more fragile than other woods, so it most likely will not last the test of time like a solid wood dresser will. 

Additionally, check the grain of the wood on all sides of the dresser. It should look similar and be going in the same direction. Some luxurious woods include teak, maple, mahogany, and cherry. Oak is typically moderately priced, with pine being the cheaper option, while still retaining good quality. 

2. The Hardware 

Basic, cheaper handles will be extremely simple and common styles. These are usually mass- produced and purchased from a manufacturer. More ornate, detailed handles are a sign of great quality. 

Ensure that the joints of the dresser are sturdy, and well fastened. Dovetail joints are ideal, as they are stronger than dowels and glue. Metal or wood drawer glides are also a sign of good quality. Keep your eyes peeled for center-rail support. This small touch helps extend the longevity of your dresser by supporting the drawers, allowing them to keep their shape longer. 

3. The Drawers 

What type of drawers does your dresser have, and how many? The most basic dressers usually have three same-sized horizontal drawers. If your dresser has more than three drawers or graduating drawers (meaning thinner drawers at the top and bigger at the bottom), your dresser might be one of the more high-quality dressers

What are the drawers made of? Solid wood drawers that are sanded and have clean, finished edges are much nicer than raw drawers. Unfinished drawers can cause snags or splinters in the clothing you store in them and don't look as sophisticated. 

4. Construction 

How well has your dresser been constructed? If you lean or pull on it, does it wobble and creak? This is a sign of a cheaply made dresser. Your dresser should be sturdy and level. 

Do the drawers slide easily and smoothly? Do they close evenly and sit level? You should not have to tug or shift the drawers to open and close them. Difficult drawers show that the dresser was not well made, and most likely will not withstand daily use for long. 

5. The Finish 

Check every side and corner of the dresser to make sure that the finish is even and was applied properly on the furnishing. There should not be any areas of patchy stain or drip marks from the clear coat. 


If your dresser has passed all these tests, congratulations! You’ve found a well-made, high-quality dresser. If not, it’s time to continue your search for better home furniture.

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