The antique country furniture we build is of our own design,
but the elements are borrowed from a wide variety of sources.
Our favorite furniture, and what we most often emulate, is best
described as Pioneer-style.
In the mid 80's an article in the Seattle Times' Pacific
Northwest Magazine described a collection of early Seattle
furniture on display at Seattle's Museum of History &
Industry. The photos and text inspired Gary to create pieces
that reflect the pioneers' desire to furnish their new rustic
homes with a type of furniture they had to leave behind or
toss from their wagons.
The absence of sawn lumber in the early settlements meant that
boards were split off trees and worked with simple hand tools.
Some pieces incorporated parts from wooden boxes and crates.
Soon saw mills were erected and rough sawn boards of native
softwoods (cedar, fir, and alder) were smoothed and worked into
naive renderings of familiar home furnishings.
In February 2005 a day was spent with the curator of Seattle's
Museum of History & Industry. Their collection of early
was measured and photographed in the museum's Seattle warehouse
where it is being stored off-site. One grows to appreciate the
ingenuity of these early settlers and the simple beauty they
created without access to machinery.
We are now at work on several replicas from this collection.
(We were recently given a table saw once owned by Robert
Moran and used in the construction of his Rosario mansion, here
on on Orcas in the early 1900's. It remains in excellent working
condition and we have been using it in some of this latest work.
Yes, Gary is a hopeless romantic!)