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July 2004
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September 2004

register your bungalow

am-bungalow-coverAmerican Bungalow magazine offers a registry for your bungalow. The registry is a privately funded archive of period homes, established to protect and preserve America's historic houses and neighborhoods, encourage the bungalow way of life, and save a few bungalows in the process. To register, fill out the form, print and fax or mail to American Bungalow. Please note, this registry does not restrict or imply any kind of regulation on your home or on future homeowners.

Ravenstone Tiles

pinecone-tileRavenstone Tiles is a small art tile company located in the victorian seaport of Port Townsend, Washington. Owner and artist Laura Reutter began making and designing ceramic tiles in 1998. Taking inspiration from early art pottery companies such as Moravian, Rookwood, Newcomb and Grueby, her designs depict nature, with elements of Art Nouveau as well as Arts & Crafts aesthetic.

see more examples of Ravenstone work in our ceramics photo album

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San Francisco open studios

Vince-Meyer-TablesMany communities throughout the Bay Area hold an "open studio" weekend (or week, or, in the case of this month-long 29th annual event in San Francisco, month!), where a large number of artists - sometimes hundreds - open their workspaces to visitors. This is a great way to discover new artists and designers, and to find wonderful work at low prices. This year's event in San Francisco will take place from 11 am to 6 pm every Saturday and Sunday throughout the month of October at more than 800 studios across the city; each weekend a new neighborhood of studios will open its doors to visitors, culminating with the huge number of open studios at the now-decommissioned Hunters' Point Naval Shipyard.

pictured: Vince Meyer's Japanese-influenced tables

catalog & mail-order hardware

2004catalogThere are a number of fantastic paper resources out there for anyone renovating their craftsman home. One of the most complete resources is the Van Dykes Restorers free catalog, which sells everything from Victorian gingerbread to oak and brass registers and every kind of stripping and finishing product known to humankind. They also carry kits for building a wide variety of furniture items.

At the top of the list as far as quality goes is Rejuvenation Hardware, which sells all sorts of fixtures and hardware (especially lighting!) out of their shop in Portland. They also do a thriving mail-order business.

The folks of the Craftsman Homes Connection, who seem to do most of their business online now, have a very attractive and jam-packed catalog, with an emphasis on decorative hardware and accessories. 21st-Century Arts & Crafts

cherylwilliamsBuilding on the Arts & Craft movement of an earlier time, is a treasure trove of current artists working in metalwork, ceramics, printmaking, painting, fiber, glass, wood, lighting, furniture and tableware.

The Arts & Crafts masters of yesteryear would have enthusiastically approved of The Guild's Philosophy: In a nutshell, we believe that when you live with art that you love, and it's made by a gifted artist with skill and care, it adds something rich and sweet to your life, every day.

Continue reading " 21st-Century Arts & Crafts" »

John Murphy Jr., illustrator

oakland-paintingJohn Murphy Jr. is a graphic artist whose illustration work is strongly reminiscent of the magazine illustration of the 1920s and '30s. He was trained at UMass & has worked as a painter, illustrator and graphic artist for a wide variety of clients (including Style 1900 magazine) in addition to his regular day-job as art director for Balboni Associates in Springfield, MA. Prints of many of his paintings are available for sale on his website.

Omega Too

medici5Omega Too sells "everything you need to make your house look old." I've bought a number of items from them, including lighting (they have an immense stock of period shades, specifically very small glass pieces in the nouveau and A&C styles) and a bunch of nickel-finish bath fixtures and our medicine cabinet. I've been saving up for one of their gorgeous front doors, complete with stained-glass panels by the tremendously-talented Ted Ellison. Omega's sister company, Ohmega Salvage, is the premier architectural salvage shop in the Bay Area. Everything from stained glass and doors to furniture to decorative wood- and stonework can be found in their voluminous inventory. You can easily spend a half day between the two Ohmega salvage yards and Ohmega Too's shop, just down the street.

Argus Books & Graphics

ARGUS2Bill Ewald's Argus Books & Graphics carries the largest stock of antique & otherwise rare books and ephemera related to the Arts & Crafts movement that I have ever seen. I've bought a few things from him, including a few excellent type specimen books, but after browsing much of his stock that he brought to the SF A&C show this past weekend, I can't wait to see a bit more of it. Bill's shop in Sacramento closed a few years ago and now he is selling primarily via mail order and at shows and fairs. It would be difficult to find a kinder & more helpful person with the knowledge of the field that Bill has; if you are looking for something in particular, please write him an email.

21st-Century Arts & Crafts

21acWhen the philosopher-designers of the Arts & Crafts movement pushed design, usability and simplicity to the forefront, they tossed out the traditional standards of Victorian taste: outrageous cost and over-decoration. They felt that the best design [was] one which should become commonplace ... whether it was a piece of furniture or a spoon. And that great design should be within the reach of the common man.

Hewn and Hammered will be searching out the Arts & Crafts designers of this decade ... craftspeople who reach back to nature for their inspiration and who are on their way to becoming the Stickleys, Gruebys and Roycrofters of their generation.

So, stay tuned in to Hewn & Hammered for our showcase of Arts & Crafts of the 21st Century. We'll begin our tour with this unique 21st Century Arts & Crafts retreat in Scotland...

please visit House In Progress!

Treadway & Toomey auctions

metal-vaseAuctions have come a long way in the last few years. Treadway & Toomey, one of the largest of the antiques auction houses to specialize in American Arts & Crafts, has one of their largest auctions of the year coming up on September 12 at their gallery in Oak Park. The online portion of the auction is presented using technology from and will occur live on Ebay. Over 1000 lots of furniture, artwork and other decorative items will be sold, and you can preview the lots online. As at any Treadway & Toomey auction, there are some really gorgeous items up for sale.

Arts & Crafts San Francisco

drawringThis weekend marks the largest A&C event on the west coast, the 11th annual San Francisco Arts & Crafts show / fair at the Design Center. A number of lectures are included in the $8 ticket price, including Dard Hunter III speaking on his grandfather's work; book signings by Jane Powell (Bungalow Kitchens, Bungalow Bathrooms, Linoleum), Dianne Ayres (Arts and Crafts Period Textiles) and Ann Wallace (Arts and Crafts Textiles); and Del Martin of Jax Rugs speaking on A&C rugs and textiles. A special exhibit on Bernard Maybeck will also be set up at the Concourse.

From the huge exhibitor list, it looks like it will be a pretty good event - I'll be there!

More open houses

openhouseIn response to this earlier post, John Morse has done a small bit of research and put together a short list of Arts & Crafts homes that are open for public viewing:

Albert Kahn's 1908 Cranbrook House, on the campus of what is arguably one of the best art schools in North America, just outside of detroit; William Morris' home and now a museum to all things Arts & Crafts, the Red House of Bexleyheath, which recently became a National Trust property; Glensheen, an amazingly ornate mixture of late Victorian and A&C rooms and furnishings, now administered by the University of Minnesota at Duluth; the Frank Lloyd Wright home and studio in Oak Park, Illinois and Wright's Robie House in Chicago; another Wright property, the Pope-Leighey house of 1940, in Alexandria, Virginia; and Craftsman Farms in Parsippany, New Jersey, the historic home and workshop of Gustav Stickley, which is now owned by the township of Parsippany-Troy Hills.

Got any more? Tell us in the comment section, below.


armoire-clothesSomeone recently gave me a subscription to Natural Home magazine, which focuses most of its editorial attention on supposedly "green" building techniques and furniture/accessories made using various renewable resources. Eco-Furniture, a subsidiary of The Green Culture, caught my eye with an ad showing an attractive Craftsman armoire. They claim to use mostly "Certified" renewable woods, Poly-Wood (an amalgam made mostly from recycled plastics and wood byproducts) and other materials and no toxic-outgassing adhesives, and that none of their manufacturing and assembly processes produce environmentally-damaging materials.

Their craftsman collections, made of (I'm assuming farmed) mahogany and oak, look sturdy and are priced affordably. [ bed / buffet / dining table ]

Sunil from Eco-Furniture tells us that they will give a $25 discount if you mention that you saw them here on Hewn and Hammered.

Craftsmen and Letterers

namasteMartin O'Brien and John Stevens create, together, some of the most stunning carved lettering I've ever seen. I don't know how many of you go crazy over this sort of thing, but typography and lettering have always been huge interests of mine since I was quite young and their work really resonates with me. Martin O'Brien writes that John, his "partner-in-crime," does all the design and layout work and that without him Martin wouldn't be able to carve his way "out of a wet paper bag," which is humble but I am sure not wholly true.

Martin is also a well-known cabinetmaker, and even in this field their collaboration has had an effect. From pieces that expertly combine the art of the letterer and the craft of the wood- and stoneworker, to Martin's own wonderfully detailed furniture design, building, repair and conservation work (much of which expresses both classical and modern Craftsman style), their work is a real treat. I hope to see much more work from this remarkable partnership.

Mass-market (i.e. cheap) Arts & Crafts furniture

barrel-chairFolks have asked that we put some emphasis on affordable Craftsman furniture. There are a lot of budget-priced items available from the big box and web-catalog retailers, which is an easy way to add A&C touches to your home. Most of it is not handmade or even hand-finished; this is mass production, the polar opposite of the craftsman ethos. But hey, it looks pretty!

Continue reading "Mass-market (i.e. cheap) Arts & Crafts furniture" »