Friday Favorites 12/23/2011

December 23, 2011

Kyle Hoepner, Editor-in-Chief
Has Oliver Bouchier entered a second childhood? At first glance it might seem so. He’s been observed recently scouring the shop floor at high-end builder Payne Bouchier for scrap plywood to make hobby horses.

But there is more technological savvy at work here than meets the eye. Asked about his charming sideline, Bouchier responds with an intricate explanation of his equines’ intricate construction, including the following, definitely non-juvenile, sentence: “The design is an anatomically correct image of a horse manipulated through the programs Rhino and Grasshopper, re-imagined into three-quarter-inch slices six inches wide and of indeterminate length, with jigsaw male and female ends, which fit longitudinally together and are glued widthwise to create a hollow, staggered master form that is then carved into shape.†He concludes: “The idea, eventually, is to make the horse fit together without screws, nails or glue as a three-dimensional jigsaw puzzle.â€

Although the horses are not yet available as production items, Bouchier hints that he wouldn’t dismiss custom orders out of hand. In a year when Christmas and Chanukah coincide, this just might be your last-minute chance to commission the holiday present that will outshine them all…

Photo courtesy of Oliver Bouchier

Paula M. Bodah, Senior Editor
For those of us who appreciate the traditional but gravitate toward a more contemporary look in our homes, these new chairs from Warren Chair Works strike a beautiful balance. The High Back chairs are, like all the furniture from the Rhode Island company, handcrafted from American hardwoods using the same joinery techniques that craftsmen used to make Windsor chairs back in the 1700s. I like the way these incorporate contrasting woods–cherry or walnut (shown here) with maple spindles and tiger maple stretchers–for a bit of extra interest. They’re meant to surround a dining table, but a single one tucked in a living room corner would make a pretty and graceful occasional chair.

Photo courtesy of Warren Chair Works

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