the wood is as advertised, very pretty. However, mine was really beat up. in fact it had been dropped so hard that there we rocks imbedded in the wood at points. the wood is hard enough that this would take some big-time impact. so much to for the velvet chariot! lots of edges really chewed up. i worked around most of it and my project is coming along, but I would have to think hard about the shipping issues if I were to do this again.