Wood has always been a precious material in Tibet. The Tibetan plateau was dry, cold and not very suitable for tree growth. Furniture from Tibet has always been quite rare. Except for the wealthy, Tibetans used very little furniture in their homes, and the population of Tibet has always been so small that not much was ever made. Most of it was probably always found in the monasteries, and of course most of these monasteries were destroyed by the Chinese during the Cultural Revolution along with huge amounts of furniture.
Made primarily from pine and other Himalayan soft woods, it is noted more for its sometimes lavishly painted surface and/or carved decoration than for its joinery.