This blog is an experiment in furniture design. The aim is to create a space where anyone, regardless of experience or “skill”, can share designs and ideas in an open forum. Some will come to learn, some to teach, all to share, and in sharing all will grow.
Furniture has intrigued and moved me since my youth and helped shape my life in profound ways, ultimately leading me to become a professional designer/maker of fine furniture. Despite my love and, some might say, obsession with furniture, I came to a place where creativity and passion began to wane ever so slightly. To remedy this I decided to embark on a one year journey to create a new original furniture design each day. Though I am only at the beginning, the process has already been amazing. One unexpected outcome has been the response. I have heard from weekend woodworkers and professional furniture makers alike, expressing their desire to create in similar ways. Hearing this was confirmation of a feeling I have had for some time: in all the publications and web sites devoted to the making of furniture there are precious few avenues for sharing and exploring design in all its facets.
Without good design a project is doomed before it even begins. But what is good design and how do you learn it. Many woodworkers, especially “weekend” craftsman, but not limited to the amateur set, feel incapable of designing their own work. How else do you explain the predominance of Arts & Crafts and Shaker furniture in reader galleries and woodworking forums and the most common question heard in the woodworking community: “are there plans for that somewhere?”. Don’t misunderstand, there is nothing wrong with Arts & Crafts or Shaker furniture or building furniture from plans. My concern is that those people are missing the satisfaction and joy of building something with their own hands that originated in their own minds.
What stops people from creating their own furniture? The main reasons I have heard are: I can’t draw and I am not creative. Can you draw a line? How about a circle? Yes? No more excuse there. Are you a human being? Yes? Guess what, you have the unique ability to create what you imagine. You have everything you need already, all you have to do is hone and practice those things and that is where this site comes in. A community of people with slightly different talents, abilities and viewpoints but shared passion, is a powerful thing. I make no claims to know everything, but together we come pretty close. The areas that I struggle with are developed by input, ideas and collaboration with others.
This is my vision for this site but, if the internet age has taught us anything it is this; the more technology enables communication, the more organic the outcome. In other words, the success or failure and, ultimately, the direction of this experiment will be dictated by its participants. I encourage you to participate in whatever way you feel comfortable. I encourage all of you, whether a professional with 30 years under your belt or someone who has never used a hammer, to post a picture of what you are working on or just have rolling around you head. I encourage all of you to look at others designs and encourage and offer constructive input. This is a site for all and, above all, I want everyone to feel comfortable here, knowing they are among friends.
This site is intended as a forum for creative expression and inspiration, not as a free source of new product ideas. The drawings and designs belong solely to their creators and are not to be duplicated or produced without their consent. This project will only work if we can trust each other and we can only trust if we follow the rules.