Modern 3D modelling software reduces the need for a large number of prototypes, means fewer product-development cycles and lower costs (time/cost), as well as improving the quality of furniture designs. However, the mechanical testing of final products is still required in order to confirm the simulation results. In this study the theoretical behaviors of different plywood seating shells (using the SolidWorks(A (R)) FEM simulation software) were compared with the real results obtained using tests to measure the deformation of the backrest. The deviations of the actual deformation from the simulation were significant for the different shells and increased with loading above the elastic deformation limit of the material. It was concluded that the SolidWorks(A (R)) simulation software could be effectively used in the calculation of the component displacements, strains, and stresses of seat designs subject to internal and external loads.