Just because a dresser is inexpensive does not mean it is poor quality, and vise versa. In order to get the highest quality furniture at the best price, make sure to do plenty of research to become well informed customer. When shopping for a dresser, either new or antique, there are certain characteristics that define high quality.
Here are a few things to look for when shopping for a dresser in order to get the highest quality.
When selecting a wood, make sure that the wood is kiln dried. This means that all of the moisture has been removed from the wood in order to make it as strong as possible. There should not be any MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard) used anywhere.
Go With the Grain
Make sure the wood grain matches on similar pieces of the dresser. The grain should all be going in the same direction and symmetrical pieces of the dresser should have a symmetrical wood grain.
The wood stain should not have any drips or inconsistencies.
Make sure the construction of the dresser uses dovetails, dowels, glue&screws, or other sturdy construction techniques. There should not be any butt joints or staples used.
Push and Pull
Try pushing and tugging on the dresser. It should not give easily, twist, or squeak at all.