In last night's episode of Modern Family, Benjamin Bratt guest stars as Manny's biological father. While he and Manny's stepdad, Jay, played a round of pool, I couldn't help but ogle at the lamp behind Bratt's shoulder. (OK, I was also ogling Benjamin Bratt a little, but can you blame me?) Still, that floor lamp was pretty distracting, with its multiple turned wood curves and sleek black finish.To find out where you can get the lamp, read more
Woodworker Nick Stagg lives in rural Oregon, where he operates Moonraker Turning from his farm-based studio. Using reclaimed wood whenever possible, Nick shapes rough pieces of wood into beautiful, turned wood bowls, vessels, and vases. I recently had the chance to ask Nick about the craft of woodturning, and he explained the ins and outs of the craft. Also, check out his shop to order some of his beautiful turned wood pieces.
CasaSugar: When did you start woodturning?
Nick Stagg: I started woodturning in 2003 after seeing some turned tool handles in someone's shop and I thought that I could do that! I had an old, inferior lathe and poor tools, but was able to make some small oil-filled lamps for family members. Shortly after that I upgraded my lathe and slowly purchased better tools and continued to turn. I joined a woodturning club and checked out all the books and videos I could from the library and spent my spare time trying to improve. As time passed, I've hosted instructors from Engalnd and Australia in my shop to give classes to other turners. I'm now confident enough that I can offer help to beginning turners and, perhaps, make their journey into the woodturning arena less painful than mine!
To hear about how Nick makes his turned wood vessels, read more
The Profile Table ($4,500) from South African studio Gregor Jenkins Design combines the traditional, curvy look of turned wood with the striking edge of industrial steel. It's a sophisticated compromise for a couple with tastes on opposite ends of the classic/contemporary spectrum. I'd love to see it surrounded by classic café bentwood chairs to add some depth and a natural texture. Although this South African stunner is built to outlive me, I'd still have a hard time convincing myself to drop nearly five grand on a table.
I can't believe that I've never noticed the Jonathan Adler Drysdale Chair ($1,595) before; it's so me. Button tufting, check! Turned legs, check! Throw in white wood and pale-blue upholstery and you've swept me off my feet. The regal, oversize back of the chair is oddly, but fittingly, proportioned to its small legs. I also love how the back legs are so simple; it brings attention to the chair's wonderful turned front legs. And, this is a strange analogy, but do the slightly splayed back legs remind you of an athletic wheelchair, or is it just me? Regardless, I'd kill to have this knockout in my living room.
This weekend I stopped by the impressively well-curated FIVEten Studio as part of my monthly traipse through Oakland's Art Murmur open studios night. FIVEten was filled with gorgeous art and design work by the likes of Nolan Niu and Ross Lovegrove, but my favorite pieces were the turned wood furniture crafted by designer Robert Austin Gonzalez.
As you may already know, I'm a big fan of turned wood. I used to love watching my grandfather create turned wood furniture on his lathe when I was little. Robert Austin Gonzalez's turned wood finds have a distinctly contemporary feel, and the chameleon-like combination of clear glass tabletops and reclaimed wood in his tables would make them perfect for a variety of interiors.
To see a gallery of work and to find out more about Robert, just read more
Thanks to AT:NY, I've been turned on to the turned wood trend. You might be thinking that these shapes are a thing of the past—and you're right, they date back to at least 1300 BC. Curvy furniture legs and turned wood home accessories have been experiencing a renaissance in modern furniture shops as of late, though.
The classic wooden shape has been re-imagined with a modern twist, as well as in other materials like glass, cork, and aluminum. There are plenty of alternatives at various price ranges, and you can even DY a shapely legged coffee table if you're up to the challenge. Click the images below to see the good looking furniture pieces and accessories that I've turned up.