An important evolution in cutting was produced by the hacksaw, whose blade mounted on a rigid structure allowed greater precision, minimizing cracks due to cutting. After cutting the veneers were separated with a thin knife, each inlay was chosen in one layer, then the various different colored inlays obtained from the cut were assembled to form the geometric shapes or designs that they wanted to create.
The wood was then shaded by placing it in hot sand or blackening it with a hot iron, thus assuming shadows that gave the veneer depth and movement.
At the end of the sixteenth century, with the evolution of inlay and the search for new colors, they began to dye wood. Vasari attributes the origins of this technique to Giovanni of Verona, other historians to the Canozzi brothers of Lendinara around 1642.
The colorful inlays greatly in vogue in the 1700s were created mainly by the great French cabinetmakers; according to others, in Italy Giuseppe Maggiolini used as many as eighty-six different types of wood.
Since inlay and marquetry often represented figurative scenes, naturalistic motifs and architectural views in realistic ways, it was necessary to know the rules of perspective. Antique inlaid furniture was comparable to framed paintings during the period, with designs produced by famous painters which were very detailed and precise.
The construction of inlaid antique furniture varied in popularity, depending on the historical period. In Empire periods, Charles X and Luigi Filippo furniture, although rich in very important veneers, had little or no inlay.
Nowadays, with this ancient technique it is possible to restore or make copies of antique furniture of the great cabinetmakers, such as Boulle or Maggiolini.
Now furniture is created that recalls certain historical periods, and inlays (often geometric) are created for modern and contemporary furniture, even though modern culture favors "fake" ecological materials such as colored laminates derived from plastic.