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Factsheet, 2010

A product semantic study of the influence of the sense of vision on the evalutation of wood

Lindberg, Siv; Roos, Anders; Kihlstedt, Annika


Based on product semantics, this study investigated how visual attributes of wood are perceived and interpreted semantically. The wood species alder, ash, aspen, birch, beech, elm, lime, larch, maple, oak, pine and spruce were used. The subjects rated the samples based on the descriptive words natural, exclusive, environmental (i.e., ecofriendly), rough, inexpensive, dark, reliable, warm, modern, cosy, solid, and light. The most significant differences were between softwoods and hardwoods. Principal component analysis yielded three dimensions based on visual perceptions: exclusive/modern, environmental/natural and light vs. dark. Maple and ash, in addition to other hardwoods, were seen as more exclusive/modern than spruce and pine. Pine, on the other hand, was perceived as the most environmental/ natural wood type. Beech and alder did not score high on any of the three dimensions. The potential use of these results in product design and interior design is discussed.


Wood design; consumer study; perceptions; consumer studies

Published in

Research results (Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Forest Products)
2010, number: 8
Publisher: Institutionen för skogens produkter, Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet

Authors' information

Lindberg, Siv
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Forest Products
Kihlstedt, Annika

UKÄ Subject classification

Forest Science

URI (permanent link to this page)