There is a sense of skill attracting skill in the workshop. But it’s more than just honed craft. Angus has attracted a team of genuine and passionate people. There is a sense of mutual respect. They are hard-working, but unhurried. This is work that cannot be rushed. Time is literally in the grain, set at the heart of each piece in circled years. This team are as grounded as the trees that provided the wood they work with.
Our furniture is hand made in our studio-workshop in Aberfeldy, Perthshire, Scotland. This means that at each stage of the process, from selecting timber to the final sanding and oiling, great care and attention are taken to ensure the highest possible levels of beauty, durability and functionality. Wood is a natural material that continues to move and “breathe”. It expands and contracts with changing moisture levels and the rate of movement differs depending on the way the tree has been cut and prepared. We are using traditional craft techniques and jointing techniques developed over centuries to cope with this movement.
Angus Ross has been designing and working with wood for over twenty five years and Senior Maker Steven Gray has worked with us for over fifteen years. Furniture Maker Mike Storey trained at our workshop and was the first person in Scotland to achieve his qualification through an apprenticeship. Furniture Maker Radenko Velinov has worked with us part-time for over five years.
We are constantly developing and experimenting with our craft and our furniture has been showcased at the most prestigious international exhibitions including: V&A London, V&A Dundee, COLLECT Saatchi Gallery London; SOFA Sculptural Objects and Functional Art Chicago; Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show; and Origin and Makers of the Exceptional at Somerset House, London. We have been nominated four years for TRADA UK Wood Awards for the best and most innovative new furniture design.
Take this moment – a piece of steam-hot wood being pressed into a curve. A sliver of time when it can be sensitively coaxed into shape before it cools and sets. This moment has a history reaching through the tree, back through the sapling it once was, through the acorn that fell and spun from the tree that grew before it, back through long-lived generations to the beginning of this steam-bending tradition that stretches years into centuries.
Our workshop specialises in steam-bending which is a truly ancient art and examples have been found in Eygptian tombs and Viking boats. Steam can soften the glue between wood fibres in a few species of tree and several of our native trees. This provides a window of one or two minutes when the wood can be coaxed and pushed and pulled into place. It is exciting, physically demanding and unpredictable. You can see steam-bending in the workshop in our Film.