commissions

To commission furniture allows me to tailor a piece perfectly to your requirements.  In this process you can give precise details on design and finish or simply give me a design framework within which to work. It may be that you have a particular space that dictates size or style, ideas on design and construction that you would like incorporated. Even particular requirements on how one interacts with and uses the piece, be it a chair, desk or cabinet will be considered.  I will advise throughout this process, so do not be afraid to ask.

Process

Following the initial discussions, I will provide draft drawings and specifications for your approval.  Once a brief, delivery schedule and price is agreed upon, a small deposit is required upon which the order is made live and further detail revisions may be made. Then it’s into the workshop where the wood and materials are selected and the making can begin.

From the initial meeting to the final delivery, I take great care to keep the customer informed and educated on each step in the process. I happy to work with you to meet your needs and would love to sit down over a cup of tea and chat about how we can make your piece of furniture.


Leaf Chair

Material: Sycamore (Acer pseudoplatanus), pear (Pyrus communis) details & Danish cord

160 hours in the making.  I have always liked organic forms inspired by the growth of trees and plants.  The starting point were the compound curve surfaces of the weaved seat and back, based on a classic leaf shape.  Each half curves up and out from a central spine, which itself is curved across a plane.  The edges start from and finish to a point.

A trip to the Sagrada Familia really fired this.  Anyone who has stood under those internal columns and seen how Gaudi drew from the form of organic growth will understand. Truly amazing.  I had been wanting to attempt a design that took a little of this feeling of form, a flow that is spontaneous yet logical.  Chairs are fun to make but stressful to design, as it difficult to balance a lightness of form with the necessary structural integrity.

I used some beautiful sycamore, nearly bone white throughout.  Sycamore is an underrated wood.  It is strong like oak and has a silky texture that a little wax brings to a finish that you just want to touch. It is also common, grows fairly quickly and is not really of interest to an industry that is fixated on oak, indifferent to the provenance or quality. Despite the implied plainness, sycamore has masses of character.  I have finished the cord with a garnet shellec to give a little contrast & colour from the sycamore.  It is combination that works well.

I think this design requires a fine grained wood.  I like the idea of pear perhaps, but it’s costly and can be less forgiving, lacking as it does much cross-grain strength.  I have fantasised about finding a long forgotten billet of Cuban or Jamaican mahogany as I think the beautiful rich red would work well.  Maybe one day!  We could discuss this design in a scorched and scrubbed finish too.  The coarseness of oak or ash would then be of merit, as the scorching would balance the grain with uniform colour so as not to overwhelm the design.  I have some English walnut (juglans regia) in stock, waiting for special projects.  That classic rich mocha brown wood with blonde cord or a pale seagrass or rush weave seat and back could really work beautifully.  Very fine cherry could be pleasing too.

The style is modern but the construction is classical.  The back posts and seat rail join to a common block that forms the squat rear legs via 70mm deep mortice and tenon joints.  The back posts are laminated to get the required curvature.  The tenons are wedged where the joints will experience a pulling force along the axis. The front leg-arm when being picked up, the leverage generated as one lowers into and rises from the seat using the arms and the front seat rail will all experience this type of force.  They will withstand for generations.

£ Price on application

Like what you see? Contact me to chat more about this piece or your own special design


Cherry Side Table

Material: Cherry (prunus avium), Sycamore, Oak & Purpleheart

This piece uses the very last of Cherry taken from Caerlyon in the Usk valley over 20 years ago

Working with British grown timber can be heartbreaking.  So often a piece of wild and beautiful grain will be spoiled by some rot, ingrown bark or the weevils and beetle grubs.  But, once past this, the conditions tend to produce wood that has more colour, figure and character than from the more consistent Continental climes and soils.

The cherry used for this piece was taken from a small hedge in Caerlyon in the Usk valley around 1996.  Used over the years for various projects this represents the last of it. The boards used for the top were sequential cuts of the log but each had flaws so a piece from each was used in order to get the leaf to an acceptable size whilst keeping the beautiful arc of the grain, which displays a little ripple, some birdseye and dramatic green streak figure.

The legs start from round at the base to an acute angle at the top, a subtle detail that helps lift the piece.

A curved drawer front with quartersawn oak drawer sides and ripple sycamore drawer base.  Purpleheart slips add a little flourish when the drawer is opened.

£ Price on application

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Double Bed

Material: American white Ash (main bed) & Ash (headboard)

Size: Double Bed

click on the images to bring up larger sizes

This was a bespoke double bed for a client who wanted a bed that would last for decades. From the initial sketches and sizing, I worked with the client to make sure they understood the materials used, why they were chosen, and where the wood was sourced.

The really satisfying part of this project was finding an extraordinary rippled ash plank from a tree in Sheffield (where the client lived) which made the distinct headboard you can see in the images above. It was finished using a spoke shave working down from the live edge, following the natural curve of the ash plank to dictate the final form.

The client had a desire to reduce the amount of non wood fittings within the bed so I created Sapele wedges and through tenon joints, allowing a complete knock-down with only a mallet and screwdriver: vital for getting up Sheffield’s winding attic stairs.

Price: From £950.00 (according to design specs)

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Dining Room Table

Material: European Oak and Swiss Pear

click on the images to get a closer look

A dining table is one of the key pieces for anyone’s home. This commissioned dining table was made from quarter sawn European Oak with two strips of Swiss Pear added to create contrast and a uniqueness for the client. The colour and texture of these two woods is fantastic – in the images above you can see the grain detail of each wood on the dining table – and it is easy to see why everybody wants to touch the table when they enter the room. This design is now available as a standard piece, but the option is there for you to modify it to your preference.

£ Price on application

Like what you see? Contact me to chat more about this piece or your own special design