Local artisans focus on reclaimed wood for handcrafted works
The art of handcrafted woodwork is thriving in Los Angeles, thanks in part to the World Wide Web, which allows artisans to sell their products directly to the public. Here are some Southern California woodworkers whose designs can lend any home a chiseled, natural glow.
The Wooden Palate: Husband-and-wife team Ryan Silverman and Eileen O'Dea — a woodworker and a chef turned woodworker, respectively — create heirloom-quality, handmade cutting boards in Los Angeles. Each requires 150 to 750 wood pieces. The Eileen is a thick rectangle with 2.5-inch legs, which can be purchased separately or as a set with a smaller round board. It’s made for daily use and won’t show most knife marks because of its end-grain construction. Available in black walnut and fumed oak. $650 (rectangle), $350 (round) at TheWoodenPalate.com.
Knotwork LA: Partners Linda Hsiao and Kagan Taylor make wood kitchen utensils — pie servers, serving and tasting spoons, spatulas and spreaders — in their studio in Highland Park. They also teach classes in which students make their own kitchen implements. They’ve recently opened a store at Highland Park’s Arroyo General. $65-$50. Available at KnotWorkLA.com.
Kalon Studios: Founded in 2007 by husband-and-wife design team Johann Pauwen and Michaele Simmering, Los Angeles-based Kalon Studios designs and creates exceptional Minimalist home furniture. Prime examples include their 3 Blocks trio of nesting tables (bamboo, black cherry, black locust, black walnut or maple, $750-$1,650) and their Hut-Hut reinterpretation of the rocking horse (in adult or children’s versions using the same woods, $995-$1,995 for kids, $1,595-$2,995 for adults). Available at KalonStudios.com.
Hammer and Brush: Woodcrafters Adam Dexter and Colt Bowden make reclaimed wood planters in their downtown Los Angeles studio. They use an ancient Japanese technique called yakisugi or shou-sugi-ban, in which wood is charred or burned to color it without pigments or stains. Succulents come with the planters, which have one, two or three holes for plants. $60-$104 for planters in the Flow series, $68-$135 for those in the Chaos series. Available at HammerandBrush.co.
100 X BTR: The studio was formed in 1997 by woodworkers Brendan Sowersby and Will Rollins. Its Tusa pendant lamp is made of plexiglass with reconstituted wood veneer. Sowersby and Rollins craft a wide range of lighting fixtures, furniture and home objects by hand in their downtown Los Angeles shop. $585. Available at 100xbetter.com.
Treeline Woodworks: John Mahroukian, his daughter Annie Mahroukian and their partner, Ad Sachan, create stylish recycled furniture, home goods and wood flooring from their Elysian Park studio. They do custom work too as part of the business they started in 2012, and they also sell recycled lumber. Their simple breakfast tray is made of three interlocking pieces. $55. Available at TreeLineWoodWorks.com.
Croft House: Riley Rea and Alex Segal started Croft House in a West Hollywood garage in 2009. They use reclaimed American wood, much of it from Los Angeles, to create furniture. Each of their pieces is designed in West Hollywood and handcrafted in downtown Los Angeles. Their Mossam media cabinet is custom-made of mixed reclaimed woods with finished birch interiors. $1,995. Available at CroftHouse.com.
JPG Woodworking: Los Angeles designer Kevin Griffin, a bio-medical researcher with a doctorate in genetics and embryology, creates spectacular connected star shapes in various woods such as cherry, purpleheart, lacewood and zebrawood. Pieces are custom-made (in three to six weeks) as a 12-point star, a starburst sculpture, a table lamp or a pendant light. $850-$3,000. Available at JPGWoodworking.com.