WoodSkills Issue 02 - Page 90


WS: Which woods do prefer working with and why?

DP: If good Honduras mahogany is available (which it usually is not) – that would be a favorite. What I like about it is that it is very mellow. It allows the design to do the work. In other words it is not relying upon wild contrasts or crazy grain to float the design. Sometimes “wild and crazy” makes for some interesting chaos (which I like to interject) though. The contrast with a mellow wood such as mahogany can be powerful. (a note here – interject wild and crazy at your own risk)

Since good Honduras mahogany is difficult to find these days – I often default to Sapele. Its not quite as mellow but the predictable straight lines of “ribbon” cut can be used to advantage.

WS: Are there any mediums, methods or furniture styles you have not yet explored but hope to in the future?

DP: I am not sure if there are any particular new styles I would like to explore. Occasionally I see work by some other furniture maker that appeals to me - not to copy but to use as a vague general direction.

WS: To date, what has been the most rewarding experience involving your furniture and being a furniture designer + maker?

DP: Probably no one incident – but the ongoing quest for a deeper understanding of design is most rewarding. There is an elusive quality to design work – its often a fleeting image that can be very fragile. Capturing that image and turning it into reality is ultimately satisfying and rewarding.


Darrell Peart Seattle, WA USA

Photo by Darrell Peart