Designer: Uhuru

I came across the company about a year ago when I was doing a little research for a wood coffee table. My design was incredibly simple; essentially made of two massive 12" x 12" x 3' pieces of wood with several wooden splines to join them, and horizontal legs running under. As with many things I 'invent' these days, it had already been done, and boy was it done right. At this point, the project was put on hold and is currently sitting in my huge list of unrealized hopefuls, with perhaps some design changes to make it more 'mine', but mostly just awaiting my boys to grow up a little as I can imagine I might be a little upset with a gorgeous piece of 12" x 12" heart pine being covered with crayon sketches and sticky jam tarts.

BEAM Coffee Table - Copyright © 2010 Uhuru Design

Uhuru is a design and build furniture company based in the Red Hook District of Brooklyn, NY, where their talented team creates each piece by hand. Founded by Jason Horvath and Bill Hilgendorf, Uhuru attempts to "merge avant-garde design with a commitment to environmental sustainability." Seeing as they quite obviously had a design style that parallels my own, I further explored their wares and, again, fell in love (this does tend to happen with regular frequency).

Here are a few of my favorites...
BEAM Coffee Table
What I Love (W.I.L.)- the old time timber is taken from demolished/renovated buildings and still retains the old nail holes and iron stains, beautiful embedded history.

BEAM Coffee Table - Copyright © 2010 Uhuru Design

W.I.L. - Modern meets antique. Each piece is a little original work of art, the way the real antique look and feel is given through the tarnished silver backing, something that  naturally occurs through the oxidizing of the silver backing. I would like to know how that is done...

Antique MOD Mirror - Copyright © 2010 Uhuru Design

W.I.L - A flitch cut hardwood slab, I mean it's hard to ever get over the natural beauty there, but the way they introduce these X-Stitches, made from recycled plastic by the way, on a very simple steel frame not only showcases the beauty of the wood, but adds a nice contemporary feel.

Stitched Table - Copyright © 2010 Uhuru Design

Stitched Table - Copyright © 2010 Uhuru Design

W.I.L - The stool/end table is made up of little scraps of hardwood from local workshops, very simple, but gorgeous puzzle-like quality.

Stoolin Square - Copyright © 2010 Uhuru Design
Stoolin Square - Copyright © 2010 Uhuru Design

For more information or to check out more of their designs and work go to