This holiday season, when so much in the world seems unsettled and uncertain, Real American Hardwood™ gifts seem especially appropriate. The natural beauty, durability, timelessness, and familiarity of oak, walnut, maple, and other beloved species may never have been more welcome than they are right now. Here are six handcrafted items that embody wood’s reassuringly unchanging qualities perfectly.
De Jong & Co., a Los Angeles–based producer of handcrafted furniture and home goods, was founded in 2014 by members of one family. That close-knit relationship seems reflected in this classic step stool’s solid practicality and pleasingly sturdy proportions. Shown here in natural walnut with a hand-rubbed oil and wax finish, it’s also available in oak and maple.
Merton Step Stool | dejongandco.com
Shari Raymond, a mom, founded Milton & Goose in 2017 to provide kids with American made heirloom-quality toys designed to last generations. Crafted from sustainable birch and maple by Amish artisans in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, this robust play kitchen has a non-toxic finish that means it’s as safe as it’s gorgeous. Measuring 31 inches wide, 13 inches deep, and 36 inches tall with a 22-inch-high countertop, it’s suitable for children over three years old.
Essential Play Kitchen + Hood | miltonandgoose.com
Wms & Co., an online shop specializing in desk accessories, was founded in 2014 by husband-and-wife JP and Allison Williams to complement their branding firm Design MW. Among the items offered are these “gathering pedestals”— display trays handcrafted by a Texas woodworker with a subtly carved rough-hewn surface that reflects light beautifully and prevents items from rolling off. Made of ash or ebonized walnut, they’re available in three sizes.
Gathering Pedestals | wmscoshop.com
Wren & Cooper was established in 2005 by Mariah Wren and Mark Cooper in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, where they design and produce contemporary hardwood furniture by hand using traditional joinery methods. This striking mirror is a fine example of their distinctive modern style. Made from thick solid maple with deep flutes hand cut into both sides of the frame, it’s available in lacquer finishes or bleached with a soap finish.
Fluted Mirror | wrenandcooper.com
Furniture maker Cedric Martin credits his Mennonite heritage for instilling in him a “reverence for tradition and subdued understated details.” In 2013 he launched Pacma Handmade, a furniture studio located in the foothills of the Catskill Mountains in Upstate New York, where he produces made-to-order pieces in woods native to the region like the white oak Ciphered Phoebe Cabinet, which features remarkable bas-relief detailing.
Ciphered Phoebe Cabinet | pacamahandmade.com
Justin Nelson founded Fernweh Woodworking in 2015 in Bend, Oregon, where a small team produces a limited collection of carefully designed handcrafted furniture. Inspired by classic Scandinavian design, the Sling Chair comprises a sleekly sculptural walnut frame supporting a hand-stitched leather seat—a true statement piece that will only get better with time. Also available in white or charcoal ash.
Sling Chair Mod 2 | fernwehwoodworking.com
Written by Wendy Silverstein
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