In a project, everyone should pull their weight and in the carpenters’ case… in lumber. Jokes aside, a carpenters’ handicraft is truly a work of art that can make or break a place. Little detailing has more effect on us than we would like to admit and I’m sure no one likes to be disappointed in their own home. Here are some major things to look out for, pulled from our worst experiences, for your best lesson.

Laminate joinings


This black line in laminates is so very different from “the silver lining in every cloud”. Due to the back of most laminate pieces being dark brown, it leaves behind a black trail when pieces are conjoint. Another cause is gaps in the laminate joining that accumulates dirt and dust. It probably is the worst nightmare for all perfectionists, even more so if the gaps are uneven. Trust us, laminates aren’t as easy to paste on as stickers. Therefore, check for and rectify those gaps, asap.

Usage of ABS trimming

ABS trimming (or ‘Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene’, if you prefer the long, super-complicated version), is a way of concealing the seams or joint lines between the edges of two surfaces. Commonly, it’s used to hide away the flaws of laminate joining in the abovementioned point, to create a smoother ‘flow transition’ between exteriors. Other than for the aesthetics, ABS trimming also acts like a “captain”, keeping your laminate joinings “in line”. It prevents splits and peeling of your laminates and increases longevity of your carpentry.

Type of wood used

Where “Wood” you use these pieces of wood? That should be your main consideration when checking for wood your carpenter is proposing. Whilst Chipboard is definitely cheaper, it lacks the ability to withstand heavy weights and isn’t as moisture resistant as its popular competitor, plywood. We at i.Poise Design always recommend plywood due to its rigidity from cross-graining and ability to take in screws, nails and even paint with ease.

A smooth finish

Always always always check the finish! We can never stress this enough. The finish is one of the easiest ways to identify excellent carpentry works in Singapore. Beautiful, painstakingly crafted pieces have an unmistakable smoothness and sheen that can never be falsified.  High quality woodwork should be scratch and dent resistant, and you can test this by running your fingernail across the wood surface. Another detail that should be noted is the sanding down of drill holes, check for them and simply ask your carpenter to do you a small favor. The pesky wooden splinters will never catch you that way.



Putting aesthetics aside, the main purpose of every house is of course, for you to live and work in. Form and function have to come hand in hand for a truly wholesome and pleasant experience. Upon completion of your carpentry, check out the fixtures, tracks and most importantly, cabinet closings. Go wild, (within a reasonable range), play a game of open and close with your cabinet doors. They should be able to do so without strange noises and be able to withstand slams with no qualms.

While personally liaising with carpenters and contractors is possible, there are way more details and things to look out for than the major signs we have mentioned. Should you have more enquires and troubles, our friendly team is more than happy to help.  Drop our design team a call today at our main line, +65 63451730 or via our  contact us page, alternatively you may also speak to our studio directors directly at +65 97386690 (Alicia)/+65 81234411 (Eugene) today! Feel free to check out more of our articles here.