Updated: May 8, 2019
If you’re thinking about moving away from mass produced furniture, this blog post is for you. To be honest, If you’ve ever thought about buying anything bespoke, you’re going to gain a lil’ somethin somethin’ from being here.
Our planet is full of inspiring people, and the UK is just one small island floating in the blue. The introduction of social media into our lives has meant that not only can we watch hours of footage of dogs riding robot vacuum cleaners, we can also spend our time peeking into the brains of the some of the world’s most creative makers.
That’s what this post is for. Stop looking at robo-dogs for five minutes and take a look at some of the businesses overseas that are absolutely crushing it. You won’t regret it.
Side note: If you click the photos for each maker, it will take you directly to my favourite post from their feed.
Mezworks - South Lake Tahoe, California
- Their attention to detail -
In my opinion, Mezworks have just got it right. When you follow them on instagram you get stunning craftsmanship, beautiful photography, lakes, mountains and dogs. What more do you want to see on your feed every day?
Sometimes in the pursuit of the perfect finished product, we have to think up our own creative solutions for tools and fixings. And Mezworks really do care about the finer details in their work, from how they engineered their unconventional router sled, right down to how they grind off the welds to leave a super sleek ‘unwelded look’. Perfection. The whole team at Mezworks collaborate together and produce high end furniture that's "eye-catching, innovative, functional, and reflections of our personal style." I couldn't have said it better myself.
Instagram - @mezworks
Corey Morgan Woodworks - Emlenton, Pennsylvania
- For Live-Edge furniture that will wow you -
When I see an Instagram post from Corey Morgan, I know it’s from him before I’ve even looked at the Instagram handle. The concept and style of his live-edge pieces are so unique that it makes the Corey Morgan Woodworks brand instantly recognisable. Something I want to bring to Dark Iron.
I could go on and on about his work but I'll let this image do the selling... Just look at that masterpiece.
Instagram - @coreymorganwoodworks
Bourbon Moth - Albany, Oregon
- For his use of reclaimed wood and for the lols -
Jason Hibbs set up Bourbon Moth 4 years ago with no previous woodworking experience. Let that statement wash over you for a minute, and then go and take a look at his Instagram (with it’s 122k following) and be all ‘What? WAIT, what?’ about it.
He uses reclaimed materials, but not your average “I just made a coffee table out of scrap pallets” kind of reclaimed material. He’s transforming reclaimed beams and high quality hardwoods into truly unique home furnishings. I met Jason in person when he was visiting London recently with his friend Corey. He’s a real genuine guy. In fact they both are. Watch Jason's stories for a couple of days and you’ll understand why I laughed so much my cheeks hurt for the whole Uber journey home.
Thanks for the sausage and mash, Jason!
Instagram - @bourbonmoth
P2 Industries - West Fargo, North Dakota
- For lovers of the industrial look -
Little known fact: P2 industries were one of the first accounts I ever followed when I was thinking about saying sayonara to employment and going out into business on my own. A full time welder at the time, I was inspired by their industrial style, and still am to this day. They are kings of the black patina finish. If you’re into interior design with an industrial aesthetic, you need to check these guys out.
Bonus : You'll also see outrageous laser cut designs and people shooting shotguns at table bases to get the perfect "patina". No brainer.
Instagram - @p2ind
Rosewood Co - Charlotte, North Carolina
- For a lifestyle approach -
I wasn’t following Rosewood Co until December last year. I happened to be looking for some dungarees for my girlfriend for Christmas, and of course it would be a woodworker that pops up in my search results wearing the perfect pinstripe pair. (see photo)
I didn’t buy the dungarees (after I begged Janine to tell me where she got them), but I did end up finding a company that I really admire. Janine designs and builds every Rosewood table, alongside her trusty foreman (who just happens to also be her Dad). I love the consistency and simplicity of her brand - beautiful furniture, lifestyle and interior design all wrapped up in one. But also her honesty - she’s not afraid of talking about the real stuff, like failure and stress, and how she frequently craves nachos.
Instagram - @rswd_co
But also in point 5...
A Carpenter’s son - Sunbury, Ohio
As an extension of Rosewood Co, A Carpenter’s Son really needs a mention too. Josh and Janine have a strong brother-sister bond, love collaborating and chasing after their similar goals. Josh makes dining table/ping pong table hybrids. Everything is hand-crafted, even down to the ping pong nets themselves, made out of leather, and a work of art in their own right.
Tables you can eat on, then ping and pong on. Enough said.
I've been following along with his recent pub project and blown away by how he and his team completely transformed the space they were given to work with. A harmonious example of a client's vision being brought to life by a maker's perception and craftsmanship.
Instagram - @a_carpenters_son
RETURNING THE FAVOUR.. are there any makers worldwide that I haven't mentioned who are worthy of a shout out on the next "top 5" blog? Let me know in the comments section and I'll take a look.