American Hardwoods
Real American Hardwoods

There it is, a fresh twist on an old classic, and just the inspiration you needed to get your artistic juices flowing. We’re talking about the creative use of American hardwoods. Here’s a look at what Wendy Silverstein and her bevy of design/build pros have come up in New York City and beyond.

INC Architecture & Design (
“In creating a new triplex penthouse out of two existing apartments in a New York City building, INC Architecture & Design emphasized the contrasts between the austerely modern and the sensuously organic.

  • The strongest organic element is found in the spiraling stair that winds its way sinuously through the light-filled triplex.
  • Comprising open treads of bleached maple, striéd-glass panel balustrades, and a pale oak handrail, the stair is cradled in a curving nautilus-like shell of pale-gray plaster that introduces a flowing sculptural form into the largely hard-angled space.
  • Although it’s a substantial architectural element, the elegantly detailed stair is disarmingly light on its feet.”

Wellborn Cabinet, Inc. (
At the 2019 Kitchen & Bath Industry Show, Alabama-based, high-end cabinetry manufacturer Wellborn Cabinet, Inc. presented a “show-stopping industrial-loft-style kitchen installation. The designer played with multiple materials, door styles, and cabinetry stains and colors.

  • The wall cabinetry is Wellborn’s Chelsea door style in maple with the new Suede stain.
  • The island’s cabinetry is the Chelsea style in maple, too, with the new Mink paint finish.
  • The lower base cabinetry is the Antigua door style in maple with the new Shale stain.”

Great Neighborhood Homes (
“In Edina, Minnesota, a new custom house by Great Neighborhood Homes, a regional design-build firm, makes imaginative use of a Dutch door for its front entrance.

  • This type of wood door—horizontally divided so the two halves operate independently—was ubiquitous in the Netherlands during the 17th century.
  • When the Dutch colonized North America, they brought the distinctive style with them.
  • The glazed top half of this painted poplar model provides a perfectly framed view of the leafy surroundings even when closed.”

INC Architecture & Design Photo: Joshua McHugh

Wellborn Cabinet, Inc.

Great Neighborhood Homes Photo: LandMark Photography

Wendy Silverstein, a consultant to the design industry and a former editor at Architectural Digest, Home, Kitchen & Bath Customer Planner, and Home/Style magazine, is a regular content contributor to the American Hardwood Information Center. Visit for more of her work.


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