More Extraordinary Wood 03.08.2018
When naturally occurring dark-coloured timbers are becoming harder to find without destroying rainforests, this new find is of particular interest. It is Fumed Oak - not a new concept in itself, but a technique has now been developed to fume the raw material through its entire thickness, rather than having to make the furniture first and then fume the piece itself.
We're making a chest of drawers with this amazing timber now.
Amboyna is the most beautiful of all burrs and, unsurprisingly, the most expensive. We made a collector's chest recently using this timber for the drawer fronts, with spectacular results. The pulls are turned from buffalo horn.
Auction Sale at Duke's of Dorchester
I am delighted to announce that there is to be an auction sale of more than twenty pieces made in my workshop, at the auctioneers Duke's of Dorchester on 19th July.
Over the years, I have somehow accumulated a ‘stock’ of furniture items. Some are pre-owned, some are new. Some are in perfect condition, some are not, and some remain uncompleted. Some were commissioned, others are prototypes, and some were made speculatively or as exhibition or apprentice pieces.
Each piece has its own story, and I am fond of them all for different reasons, however I must make way for new work, and make some space in our store rooms!
There will be a Preview Event at the workshop on Thursday 12th July, 6-9pm, when the items can be viewed prior to the sale.
Click through this post to see a full invitation, and viit www.dukes-auctions.com to view the full catalogue of the sale.
Looking for a Senior Maker 09.03.18
We are looking for a new Senior Maker to join our growing team.
If you are interested, please have a look at the 'Careers' page of this website.
Buying Oak Burrs 17.11.2017
I'm scouring the country at the moment to find beautifully figured and characterful English Oak and Oak Burrs for a project we will be working on next year in a NEW BUILD castle! I found this beauty at a mill in Lincolnshire last week.
Working with Emma Peascod 17.11.2017
I love collaborating with other artists, and here glass artist Emma Peascod is showing me her ideas for artwork for three glass panels. These will form the backdrop in a cabinet we are making to display taxidermified birds on a new superyacht.
Beautiful Quartered Oak 12.10.2017
The Oak we used to make this occasional table, for an Arts and Crafts period house, had the clearest and most spectacular medullary rays I have ever seen. This feature of the timber is a result of it being 'quarter sawn' at the mill.
Finishing a desk 12.10.2017
Senior Craftsman David Nelson has been working on this desk for some months. It's a repeat of a piece I first designed in 2000, which received a Guild Mark from The Furniture Makers' Company.
Here David is fine tuning the fit of the small drawers.
Awards at The Rycotewood Centre Show 20.06.2017
More awards have come the way of the workshop! Congratulations to Lewis, our apprentice, for winning the Bo Korting Award for Apprentice of the Year, and to our new addition Tom Acland for winning The Lazenby Award for excellence in craftsmanship, both achieved at The Rycotewood Centre in Oxford.
Welcome to the team, Tom Acland 20.06.2017
Tom Acland has joined the workshop, initially for work experience, while he completes a three-year degree course in Furniture Design and Craftsmanship at The Rycotewood Centre in Oxford.
Tom will work with us in his college holiday periods, and upon graduating in 2020, we hope he will join us full time as a Trainee, moving on in the fullness of time to become a 'fully fledged' maker.
The Claxton Stevens Prize 2017
Exciting news that the display cabinet that we made for a Chinese terracotta horse (see earlier news item) and which was awarded a Guild Mark from the Furniture Makers' Company, has also now won the 'Claxton Stevens Prize'. This is for the best Guild Mark of the year, and so is the highest honour achievable in bespoke furnituremaking.
I was delighted to receive the prize at The Mansion House last month, presented by Dame Fiona Woolf.
Looking for makers to join us May 2017
The team continues to grow, and we are particularly on the lookout at the moment for skilled and experienced furniture makers to join us.
If you think you would enjoy working with us, do give Richard a call to arrange a visit and a chat.
Teaching at The Rycotewood Furniture Centre 24.04.2017
I recently enjoyed helping second year foundation degree students at The Rycotewood Centre in Oxford with the design development of their current projects.
Their brief is to design and make a piece for storage, and over four sessions it was fascinating to see and discuss the enormous variety of ideas and inspiration that came from this group of students.
I'm very much looking forward to seeing their finished pieces, some of which I am sure will be on show at the summer exhibition.
Guild Mark Award 12.01.2017
We are thrilled to kick off 2017 with the news that a cabinet we have made to display an ancient chinese terracotta horse has been awarded a Guild Mark by The Furniture Makers' Company. This award is only made to pieces that are judged to be of exceptional quality in design, materials and craftsmanship, and is our eighth such award.
The cabinet has also been put forward for the award for the year's best piece - the Claxton-Stevens Prize. We'll cross our fingers.
Special thanks to Alex Roebuck for making such an excellent job of the piece.
Join us 12.2016
We are looking to add to our team in 2017, and have positions available for skilled and experienced Furniture Makers as well as a Project Co-ordinator.
If you're interested, please contact Richard by phone or email for more details.
Dressing Room 14.11.2016
Just completed the installation of this dressing room (‘hers’) and another (‘his’), as well as wardrobes for three other rooms for a local client in their lovely newly-built house.
Amarrah Ebony Veneers 7.11.2016
This week, Lee and Nikki are preparing and laying Amarrah Ebony veneers for a very special set of doors for a dressing room project. The doors will then have an inlay of English Cherry.
I made my first pieces for these clients seventeen years ago!
Scottish Castle Project 31.10.2016
We recently completed all the top level joinery in a magnificently restored Scottish castle. Working with one of the top UK interior designers, over the course of eight months we made furniture and panelling for thirteen rooms, including Dressing Rooms, Study, Wine Store, Dining Room, Powder Room, Bathrooms and Bar. Several of the rooms were inside the turrets, and so we faced the challenge of making the furniture in the workshop in Beaconsfield and installing into the round roomspaces in Scotland.
All delivered and installed on time and on budget, with very happy clients!