Bleached oak, walnut, ebony—marine blue? Designers are branching out when it comes to wood finishing, experimenting with new techniques and an array of colors.
See the unexpected shades adding bold personality to timber finishes and furnishings in our round up below.
A project born from a desire to blend contrasting aesthetic sensibilities in art and design, Juntos creates furniture and objects made to bring people together. Every design is developed in collaboration with highly-skilled craftspeople using premium, natural materials sourced as locally as possible. Their first collection, Coming Home, offers a range of pieces made in Lewiston, Maine using hard maple sustainably sourced from the North East of the United States.
The pieces in the collection are available in three unique stains made exclusively for Juntos: Lichen, a soft green; Tide, a dark blue; and Tinto, a deep aubergine.
INDO- is an award-winning interdisciplinary design studio based in Providence, Rhode Island, that was founded in 2017 by Urvi Sharma and Manan Narang, partners in work and now life—the pair recently got married!—after the duo met while studying at RISD. The New Delhi-natives create modern furniture pieces that reference traditional dying and weaving techniques, blending tradition into contemporary objects.
The studio’s Pilar Collection was inspired by the bold colors and rich, earthy glazes of handmade ceramics and architectural mosaics. The designers sought to create a similar feeling of warmth and depth through this collection.
“Re-contextualizing the process of dipping and layering glazes on ceramics alongside the tactility of its fluted wooden surface, the Pilar Collection invites you to come closer, discovering moments of color and intensity particular to each flute as they create a constant dialogue of light and shadow,” the designers share, “It is a nod to simple, functional, contemporary design with a beauty inherent in the handmade.”
Timbur is a digital fabrication company that uses advanced robotic and CNC manufacturing methods to create uncommon and distinctive projects while exploring the intersection of design, materiality, and robotics as a source for re-imagining the natural world.
The Stack Collection, ddigitally fabricated stack-laminated contemporary furniture for both residential and hospitality settings. The collection offers a unique perspective on the conception and production of contemporary furniture: Stack products are made in the USA using FSC certified plywood and are designed to minimize material waste.
“We finish all of our Stack laminated pieces with custom tinted waterborne acrylics. It takes just the right touch to build up the color while allowing the beauty of the layers to read through.”
Designed and handmade in Los Angeles, California, by self-taught woodworker Todd Hewitt, The Last Ditch collection relies on the simplicity of form, the nature of function, and a subtle elegance for the details.
The studio’s Iris Coffee Table uses craft as a foundation for the minimal yet bold piece. Rounded edges smooth the blocky form, removing all rigid lines, and the bleached ash finish makes this solid object appear soft and almost weightless.
Aronson Woodworks is an Iowa-based woodworking shop specializing in furniture as works of art made for everyday living. Their handcrafted pieces are finished with a one-of-a-kind, proprietary 8-step finishing technique called CLAIZE™.
Named for founder Clay Aronson, the process infuses custom color in both the field and the grain of the wood, resulting in unique effect that can range from dramatic to subtle depending on the colors used and the inherent character of the wood itself. Transforming the way the world sees wood grain, Aronson’s CLAIZE™ create works of art that can stand up to the everyday wear and tear of life.
“Each piece that is finished with CLAIZE™ is intended to last for generations,” the shop explains, “Each step of our process ensures that the wood is well-protected and adheres to our measure of quality and luxury.”
Studio Sløyd is a design studio based in Oslo, Norway working across the design landscape, from conceptual one-off pieces to more contemporary designs. Their approach to design is inspired by the educational sløyd, which translates as crafts, handicraft, or handiwork and refers primarily to woodwork, that is taught in Scandinavian primary schools, focusing on exploration and respecting the material.
The designers debuted their latest collection, Roggbif, this spring in Milan.
“Rather than starting with a shape or form, we turned our usual process on its head for this project, experimenting our way to a new material,” the designers share, “The innovative use of color, along with overlapping shapes and joints, highlight the inherent qualities of the birch from which they are constructed. Made from through-colored wood, these pieces will survive years and years of wear and tear—a more sustainable alternative to the industry standard of coloring wood with a vulnerable top layer. The multicolored design reflects the name: ‘Roggbif’ is the Norwegian acronym for the colors of the rainbow.”