Kacey Swivel Chair Caitlin Side Table
Spring 2022 - Vol. One Issue Four
whats inside 7 Brierfield Farmhouse 9 What’s Modern Now 10 The Power of Home 11 Southern Hospitality 12 Q & A 15 Behind The Curtain 16 From Factory to Workroom 20 Looking Forward
Josephine Wing Chair
MADE FOR YOU™
The Made For You magazine is published by Hickory Chair, manufacturer of fine personalized wood and upholstered furniture. From classic to modern, each piece is made by hand and to order. Over 90% of Hickory Chair’s products are made to order in America. Alex Shuford III CEO - Rock House Farm President - Hickory Chair Laura Holland Editor-In-Chief The staff of Made For You, based in Hickory, North Carolina, welcomes your feedback. Comments and queries can be referred to: Send traditional mail to: Made For You Attn: Laura Holland PO Box 2147 Hickory, NC 28602 Electronic mail should be directed to: email@example.com
Click here for a free copy Please note that submissions for future publication, including photographs and articles, should be clearly identified with contact information and full project details.
hickorychair.com Produced in USA © 2022 ON THE COVER: The Kacey Swivel Chair and Caitlin Side Table from the new Positano Collection by David Phoenix®.
issue four contributors MARGOT SHAW is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Flower Magazine. Now in its 14th year, the magazine has grown to include features on homes, gardens, entertaining, and lifestyle. Margot is a sought-after speaker at antique & garden shows, museums, botanical gardens, interior design centers, and more. She is the author of Living Floral: Entertaining and Decorating with Flowers, published by Rizzoli. MARY EVELYN MCKEE is a Birmingham, Alabama-based designer that has design and artistry in her genes. Painting classes with her grandmother taught her how to really see, and her artist father spurred her talents. Her mother, an accomplished pianist, taught tempo and movement to Mozart and Bach. From her richly artistic upbringing, she studied Art History, focusing on decorative arts and architecture at Hollins College. Her approach is personal, pragmatic, and artistic. Her style is elegant, but not fussy. Mary Evelyn began her design enterprise in 1986. Its success led to opening her retail interiors shop, offering her signature palette of sunny neutrals and her eye for great design. DAVID HILLEGAS, a Birmingham, Alabama-based photographer, is known for environmental and ethereal landscapes mostly inspired by his travels. David brings stillness to the din of every day life. He creates unique compositions with an unconventional perspective where each frame tells its own story. CHARLIE FLYNN is the owner of Francis King, Ltd and the Hickory Chair Minneapolis Showroom. For the past xx years, Charlie has volunteered his time and resources to supporting Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative by not only helping those in need find shelter but more importantly a home and the stability it provides. DAN GREGORY for the past four years has served as teh Strategic Collunications Manager for Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative. Dan holds a Master of Arts in Religion, and has more than 10 years of experience professionally telling stories as a young adult minister, pastor, jurisdictional leader, and nonprofit community engagement and communications specialist. DAVID PHOENIX is an award-winning designer known for his elegant style and luxurious, comfortable interiors. The client-driven firm has delivered personal, sophisticated, and thoughtful homes to celebrities, royalty, and financiers for nearly three decades. David is newly based in Palm Beach, FL, after years in California, where he was named by the Hollywood reporter as one of the top 25 interior designers in Los Angeles. David’s work is consistently recognized in various publications, including multiple covers of architectural digest and stories in Traditional Home, Veranda, Luxe, and more. In addition to his ongoing partnership with Hickory Chair, David has a growing stable of product collaborations, including textiles with Kravet and art with Soicher Marin. SKIP RUMLEY is a Greensboro, NC based designer in his 9th year with Hickory Chair as the VP Creative Director. In this role, Skip is responsible for leading product innovation, merchandising the product assortment and creating collaborative collections with company design partners. Skip has forged a 20-year career engaged with some of the most prestigious luxury brands in the furniture industry where he has designed interiors for showrooms as well as designing lighting, accessories and furniture. In October 2020, the company introduced a new collection EVERETT™ by Skip Rumley. LAURA HOLLAND has proudly been a part of the Hickory Chair family for over 36 years. Throughout her storied career working in various areas of the company, she has become known for her passion and determination. As VP Marketing, she is responsible for all marketing initiatives of the company and serves on the Board of Directors of The Common Thread of The Cure Foundation. 2
greetings from the chair One of my favorite children’s books is “The Little Engine That Could” by Watty Piper. The little engine was faced with insurmountable odds but due to its determination, it overcame the steep grade and safely crossed the mountain with its precious cargo. I cannot begin to count the times Hickory Chair has found itself in this position beginning with its first day of operation. While we mark our beginning in 1911, the original company actually began in 1901. We did not adopt Hickory Chair as our name until we moved to Hickory from Elkin. The two brothers that started the company were lured from New York to North Carolina start up a chair factory as the Industrial Revolution was ramping up creating jobs with the industrization of the South. In addition to the challenges of starting up a company in 1901, the brothers realized that Elkin was known for textiles but not furniture. The local workforce was not skilled in woodworking. Hickory had a long history of woodworking with the Piedmont Wagon Factory and was becoming a mecca for furniture making with the demise of the wagon industry. The move to Hickory in 1911 made it possible for the company to not only survive but thrive in the 110 years that have now passed. Through the decades our resilient employees have banded together to overcome unsurmountable odds many times. The Great Depression, multiple wars, not one but two pandemics, recessions, ownership changes and shortages of materials and craftsmen have each challenged our company. We would not have survived these difficult times without the grit and determination of our people and your faith that Hickory Chair has the ability to overcome, evolve and become better than before. We are pleased that Made For You™ magazine is now in its fourth edition. Your feedback and submissions have allowed us to provide content that not only resonates, but hopefully inspires. We appreciate Margot Shaw, Editor-in-Chief of Flower, for not only creating a feature for our magazine, but also entrusting us to make furniture for her home. We received submissions from designers across the country and are pleased to share the talents of Mary Evelyn McKee and David Phoenix in this fourth issue. We thank Skip Rumley, VP Creative Director of Hickory Chair for his engaging Q&A with David Phoenix. We are pleased to share the valuable effort being made by BEACON® and Charlie Flynn, owner of Francis King, Ltd and the Hickory Chair Minneapolis Showroom to not only provide shelter but a home for those in need. We invite you to submit your projects and good works for consideration for a future issue. We hope that you enjoy this new issue of Made For You™. Each issue is created with love and appreciation of our artisans and craftspeople and for you. It is our honor to make a one-of-a-kind home furnishings made for you. All my best, Editor-in-Chief
MADE FOR YOU™
BRIERFIELD FARMHOUSE ~ a hidden retreat ~ P h o t o g ra p h y b y Da v i d Hi l l e g a s Pro d u c t i o n a n d S t y l i n g b y A m a n d a S m i t h Fo w l e r Wr i t t e n B y Ma rg o t S h a w F l o ra l De s i g n b y S u z a n n e G ra ve s o f Wi l d l o w e r De s i g n s
It’s a rich, evocative word—one that carries as many different connotations as there are people. But for me right now, it represents the farmhouse/show house, “Brierfield”, that my husband, Gates, and I dreamed of for quite some time before finally making it a reality. The home sits on land that was pieced together over the decades, as parcels became available. He chose the site for our house with the confidence and relish of one whose family has long inhabited the land and one who has been envisioning the project for many years. For the first time in my not-so-young life, I was confronted with a completely blank canvas of a house. I tend to do better with a few parameters, so as I conferred with our Birmingham, Alabama-based designer, Mary Evelyn McKee, she encouraged me to think of the homes I have lived in and/or spent time in— the ones that I truly loved. Houses of my heart, if you will. Immediately my imagination was flooded with snapshots of my greatgrandparents’ home on a hillside outside of Birmingham. It was a rambling fieldstone house without airs, but it did boast a pavilion with a carousel giraffe, along with many mysterious nooks and crannies, a sleeping porch, and even a cattle barn in the back. It was magical.
“As preserving original elements in each room of the house was important to our client,
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place. It also tends to be low-maintenance, which was equally important to us. When we reached the stage of planning the interiors, Mary Evelyn and I shifted into high gear. As this was not only going to be a home but also a showhouse and future feature in Flower Magazine, not to mention the fact that it was planned and executed during the pandemic, we were facing a complex set of challenges. While I wanted the house to be comfortable and personal, we also had to factor in how it would photograph. Then, there were the implications of Covid, including increased demand for residential building and furnishing materials. Once our crackerjack sales and marketing team at Flower Magazine had selected (with input from Mary Evelyn and me) the brands we
I had found my inspiration and shared it with Gates, to a glowing response. He too remembered the house, having grown up just across the two-lane highway from it. In fact, he had fond memories of horseback riding across the lawn and teasing my young girl cousins who lived just down the road. We agreed that it was important to find an architect who understood the vernacular. Pete Pritchard, who also grew up nearby, was the perfect choice to interpret my memory while also hearing and including Gates’ more rustic aesthetic. Our next need was a landscape architect who would love and appreciate the property and work to maintain the informal feel of the farm. We tapped Ben Page from Nashville because of his quiet, thoughtful design and plant choices. Ben’s work is always in sync with the environment and the history of the
“A special refere which felt like b farmhouse, and 6
envisioned for Brierfield, and top-tier candiBy Donour Easterling and Nina Nash Long dates all said “yes”, we began the process choosPhotography by Emilyof Followill ing the perfect pieces for this special project. These items had to speak not only to the rusticity of the farm but also to the sophistication of our sponsors and, if I do say so myself, us. No “swamp art”, no faux wood, no cowboy wallpaper, no lumberjack blankets. The look needed to be more “country life” in rural Alabama—comfortable furniture with handsome wood finishes and profiles, an earthy palette, and lots of places to perch and read, visit, or just soak in the dreamy bucolic vistas. Throughout this exciting selection process, my dining room table in town became command central, strewn with memo samples, mood boards, plans, and countless cups of coffee and Diet Coke® cans. After making a few brief initial visits to showrooms that were open,
ence for me was my great grandparents’ house being in the country — and it was a fieldstone d I loved it.” - Margot Shaw
“The farm is a character in the script of Margot and Gates’ life and this house is one more chapter in that story.” - Mary Evelyn McKee Mary Evelyn and I traveled virtually using our laptops to view and select furniture, fabric, appliances, and lighting. We then chose artwork and rugs in person. I dare say we set a record. Once we had met our ordering deadlines, Mary Evelyn laughingly commented that we should start a reality show called “Speed Decorating”. Aside from the challenges of procurement during the pandemic, there was the high demand placed on local workrooms, as well as on our sponsors. Thankfully, Mary Evelyn’s long and successful associations with American furniture companies, including Hickory Chair, and with local upholsterers and drapers were rewarded. EVERYTHING was beautifully fabricated and ready on time. Sourcing building materials was equally tricky, MADE FOR YOU™
but thankfully our contractor is a man of ingenuity. When unable to find any heart pine, he heard of an 1840’s textile mill being raised in Valley, Alabama, and immediately put a hold on all the wood. He then drove his own truck to pick it up. Because of his efforts, we now have beautiful heart pine doors and floors.
Freya Dining Table
“Its a place we plan for generations to experience the beauty of the land, the wildlife, and a snug, special home to take it all in.” - Margot Shaw Candler Twin Bed
Plant procurement also proved a tad problematic. With so many of us staying at home over the last year-and-a-half, gardens have been the beneficiaries of closer attention and more leisure time to plan and implement our ideas. Demand for some of our first choices was high, so the ability to strategically substitute became an important skill. If there’s anything we’ve learned and/or honed during these difficult times, it’s the ability to pivot. For Brierfield specifically, that meant finding suitable alternatives to our few first picks that were unavailable—whether fabric, furniture, light fixtures, fieldstone, or plant material. And while I thought I was attached to those unattainable first choices, as I’ve lived in the house, I’ve come to realize that I like the results of our “pivots” even better than the original selections. This dream becoming a reality—a new home of the heart and future ancestral farmhouse doubling as a show house— has been the absolute best and most enriching experience I can imagine, even in the season of Corona. And the dedication and work ethic of all those involved in this project have humbled me and made me even more grateful. I f y o u e v e r fi n d y o u r s elf i n Cen tral Alabama, come see us at Brierfield. I’d love to show you around.
Isabella Bedside Table
what’s modern now
The kitchen has always been considered the heart of the home and now the hub. Kitchens today are open to the family room allowing friends and family to congregate. They have become a true living space where the entire family can gather while cooking, working or simply relaxing.
Axis Counter Stool
Ray Booth® Collection Photography by David Hillegas
THE POWER OF HOME W H I L E S H E LT E R I S C R U C I A L F O R S U R V I VA L , H O M E I S E S S E N T I A L F O R L I V I N G
eacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative has a vision that ‘all people have a home’. They are a collaborative of congregations in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area who together build affordable and supportive housing, shelter families, and organize to impact housing policy. Beacon is a unique organization – an experienced nonprofit housing developer leveraging the power of congregations to create the public will needed to build and sustain affordable housing. Their focus is on households who make less than $30,000 a year, and those who are experiencing homelessness. With a small staff and wonderful volunteers from the Twin Cities, Beacon is not only providing shelter, but also home which is essential for living.
had left my job at Baker to open a showroom at International Market Square. That showroom, Francis King would provide exclusive highend furnishings to some of the most beautiful and prestigious homes in our area. The juxtaposition of my professional world and the one I knew was being experienced by many here in the Twin Cities began to present itself more and more. Again, Linda pointed the way that I might begin to bridge the gap between the world I worked in and the one I wanted to live in by reaching out to the shelter program, who by then had merged with what is now Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative. Not knowing much about the nonprofit world, and just wanting to serve, I began by clearing snow and ice from the city sidewalks surrounding the shelter’s day center in north Minneapolis and cutting the lawn of a Beacon-owned affordable housing unit in south Minneapolis. That was 13 years ago. After a few seasons of this work, I was asked to participate in the fund-raising effort for our shelter program, from there I was asked to join the shelter leadership committee and then, well you get the idea. When I began this journey, I was uncomfortable not being an expert on the subject of homelessness but was committed to the notion of always welcoming the challenge and saying yes whenever I could. Owning a furniture showroom has put me across the table from many seasoned negotiators and I never sweat when meeting with them, however, every time I am negotiating with public officials and people of influence in our community for those without a voice and in need of a stable home, I can feel the sweat running down my back. This assures me I am doing the right thing.
Why is Beacon important to you Charlie?
Charlie Flynn, owner of Francis King, Ltd and the Hickory Chair Minneapolis showrooms, is currently serving as Beacon's Board Chair, along with thousands of passionate volunteers, they are making a huge impact on homelessness throughout the state of Minnesota.
I believe that all people have a right to a quality affordable home and that everyone benefits when we all have a home. I also believe that our society can afford to meet this need. To that end Beacon works tirelessly to build deeply affordable housing, shelter families that are experiencing homelessness and advocate for policy change at the
How did you get involved with Beacon Charlie?
My wife, Linda, has always been the leader in our family when it comes to service. About twenty-five years ago, shortly after we moved to Minnesota, Linda mentioned she had heard about an organization our church was starting to partner with. They offered shelter for families experiencing homelessness though a model where the organization provides a Day Center where families can base their daily routines from, and then a network of churches, synagogues and mosques provide evening accommodations, meals and fellowship on a rotating basis. Soon after this conversation we began preparing meals for the families whenever our church “hosted”. This brought our family closer to the realities of homelessness and offered a platform for many discussions around our own kitchen table. Fast forward 10 years, our family was growing, and I 10
Great River Landing, supportive housing for men who have recently exited incarceration and experienced homelessness.
66 West, supportive housing for youth who have experienced homelessness, located in the suburban community of Edina State and local levels. The staff at Beacon are some of the most knowledgeable and passionate professionals I have ever met. Having spent my entire career in the for-profit world where growth and profit rule the day, it is inspiring for me to witness motivators and goals that are quite different. Guided by our faith and strategy, Beacon volunteers and staff work relentlessly towards a mission that meets the needs of the community every day. Since we must become a larger organization to have the impact that is needed to ensure that all people have a home, growth is still important, but our financial focus is about compliance, being good stewards of the budget and maximizing the effectiveness of every dollar rather than profit. Being a faith inspired / volunteer led organization Beacon has put me in touch with a passionate and affirming volunteer base that lets their actions speak their faith rather than their words. Many people that I meet at Beacon have said that their faith has led them to this work, as I look at my experience, I realize that this work has actually brought me back to my faith.
66 West apartment home Currently Beacon has authored a campaign we are calling “Bring It Home, Minnesota”, https://www.beaconinterfaith.org/bringithome. This effort calls upon elected officials in Minnesota to make sure every Minnesota family can pay their rent. Currently only 25% of those eligible for rental assistance actually receive it – only one in four! By providing rent subsidies we can offer a simple, bold, cost-effective solution that will bring housing stability once and for all. That’s the kind of world I want to live in, and I’m excited to be part of an organization that’s working to make it happen. About Beacon | beaconinterfaith.org
Southern Hospitality A favorite American tradition is spending time with people you love with delicious things to eat. Whether it is a congregational meal, a party, a company lunch, a family reunion or picnic, the common thread is good food that has been prepared by hand. It’s roots trace back to the first Thanksgiving, family gatherings and community fundraisers. While eating is a basic need for survival, most people enjoy the warm, social activity that surrounds a delicious meal that is shared with people you love. After a covered dish meal to honor a retiring craftsperson, a group of employees wanted to create a cookbook filled with their favorite recipes. Over 1,000 delicious recipes were submitted as “In Good Taste - A Collection of Recipes from Our Hickory Chair Family”, was published. This recipe is was shared by Dusty Rice, a employee of over 24 years. It is a true taste of Southern Hospitality from us to you. To register to win a free copy of the cookbook, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chicken & Dumplings 8 cups chicken broth 1 cup milk 2 cups self-rising flour pinch of salt 4 T. cooking oil pinch of pepper 1 chicken (boneless and skinless or whole chicken) Stew the chicken and set aside to cool. Pour the broth into a stock pot and set aside. In a bowl add the flour, oil and milk. Mix well. Boil the brother, take a spoonful of dough and put it into the boiling broth until all the dough is in the pot. Turn the heat down on low and put a lid on the pot. Cook 15 minutes with the lid on. Do not stir. Add the chicken, salt and pepper to taste. Once the chicken is heated, the dish is ready to serve.
Q+A Tak i n g R i sk s a n d Bo ld l y Em b r a c i n g C h a n ge DAVID PHOENIX David Phoenix Interior Design
SKIP RUMLEY VP Creative Director
For David, the past two years have been a time for pause and reflection, rebirth and restoration. He and Skip share an candid discussion about making bold choices personally and professionally that have inspired him. With a cross-country move and exciting new collaborations, David has certainly made dramatic use of this time. His new Positano Collection for Hickory Chair and his new Scholar Series for Soicher Marin were both conceived and launched during this time. Skip: Tell us why in the midst of the pandemic, you decided to move from Los Angeles to Palm Beach? David: After spending a lot of time in Palm Beach in 2019 while participating in the Kips Bay Showcase House, a cause close to my heart, we started getting work in Palm Beach. I thought to myself I could live there! When the pandemic hit I evaluated where I wanted to be at this stage of my life. Palm Beach was the answer after much soul searching. I have many fond memories and friends on the West Coast. I am fortunate enough to work on both coasts.
Caitlin Side Table
Zitelli Cocktail Table
Zitelli Side Table
Kacey Swivel Chair
Skip: You are now part of the Palm Beach design community. How would you describe the difference between the design community in Los Angeles versus Palm Beach? David: The design community is bustling in both cities. While both communities are filled with incredible architecture that spans from classic to modern and from Tuscan to Mediterranean, it is the light and climate of southeastern Florida that has had the biggest influence on my work. It impacts not only how people want to live, but the color palette as well.
Owings Writing Table
Skip: Has your move caused you to approach projects differently? Do you interact with your clients differently or find your aesthetic is evolving? How much of this change, if any, is due to the pandemic? David: My approach has remained the same, but I find I am gravitating to lighter, open-grained finishes. We lean toward less formal forms and to fresh, sophisticated, and modern forms. I think this is a reflection of the pandemic. We are all spending more time at home. It is our sanctuary and should be a place where we can relax and escape.
Sydney Side Table Birkdale Bench
Skip: What is your favorite thing about living in Palm Beach? David: Every morning as I walk to work, my route takes me by the beach. I have this moment to soak in the morning light on the water. It centers me and I am ready for the day. I have never been happier. I love seeing the ocean every morning when I wake up.
Skip: Any lessons learned from the pandemic that is changing how you approach your business? David: Yes, I think we have all learned some important lessons. We have all had to learn to balance shortages of labor and supplies, longer lead times and how we communicate with our clients. We must all respect the time it takes to acquire and complete a project now. You should not rush to just find something to fill a space. The best things in life are worth waiting for.
Eden Roc Dining Table Salmore Chair
Skip: Has this move changed you personally? David: I have learned that taking risks pays off. I did move cross country. I did start a new practice. I love it here in Palm Beach. I am happier and busier than ever. I would do it again in a minute.. and it has dropped my blood pressure!
Skip: Since moving to Palm Beach you have launched a new furniture collection with Hickory Chair and a new art collection with Soicher Marin. What was your inspiration for these new collections? David: My new Positano furniture collection for Hickory Chair was inspired by one of my favorite places. While I have lived by the sea most of my life, the time I spent in Positano on the Amalfi Coast has always been special. The hills are dotted with villas, cafes on the cliffs, and how the whole town seems to pause to watch the sunset together – it’s chic and magical. The new collection reflects this unique spirit and style; fresh, sophisticated, and modern. My new product with Soicher Marin, the Scholar Series, is actually a series of seven sophisticated collections pairing my love of art and design. The series reflects my fascination with classical European design and architecture as well as turn-of-the-century and modern art. The series was inspired by travel and studies. Like my interior design projects, I wanted both of these new collections to be rooted in tradition but viewed through a contemporary lens.
Skip: What is next for you? David: I am focused on my clients right now. I love being creative and my clients are keeping me very busy. I would love to continue to expand on my product collections in the future. But most of all, I am overwhelmed with gratitude that I am so very happy and able to do what I do.
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Upholstered in HC83 Colours Tee Pee by Carroll Leather 14
Behind the Curtain
A behind the scenes series of tips for purchasing and living with fine furniture.
One of the most loved and yet least understood upholstery coverings is leather. It
has a sensuous lure about it. With its buttery softness, distinctive beauty and unique comfort, leather seating provides a luxurious experience. When it is cared for with the right methods, it will age gracefully and will last a lifetime. Like any skin that does not receive the proper care, leather can lose its vitality and will show its age over time. Leather is a broad term. It is the most durable natural upholstery material but there are many types of leather made for furniture today. Leather is either waxed, painted or dyed. Some have a protective top coat. With modern advances in the tanning process, leather will remain supple and will keep its shape over time. The finish and dye used today are permanent. Unlike vintage leather, the finish will not crack or peel. Knowing this information about what type of leather is vitally important to protect your investment. Ask your designer or sales person about the leather that was chosen for your new furniture. What type is it? Does the manufacturer provide any care or cleaning instructions? If this information is not available, most leather can be cared for with these simple steps. - Dampen a white soft cloth with distilled water. Wring out any excess water. - Water from your tap could contain chlorine, minerals or rust that could stain. - Never use a colored cloth as the dye in the cloth could transfer to the leather. - Gently wipe your leather furniture with a damp white cloth each time you dust as it does not just build up on your wood furniture. - The absorbed moisture from the damp white cloth is good for the leather and will help keep it supple. - If more than distilled water is needed, only use a non-alkaline soap and then wipe it again with a clean, damp white cloth. - Vacuum under the seat cushions regularly. You might even find some change! - Follow this routine every two weeks. Leather does have some natural enemies - body oils, dust, dander from your pet, light and direct heat. Wiping the surface with a damp white cloth regularly will help body oils from building up on the surface and will prevent the dust from scratching the surface. Always use a blanket for where your pet chooses to relax. Not only will they create a wear pattern, their dander and body oils will build up quickly. Exposure to direct sunlight or household lighting can cause fading. Do use blinds, curtains and periodically move your furniture so that fading is minimized. If furniture is placed near a heat source, it can cause the leather to dry out and crack. Use a air flow diverter to redirect the air coming through the vent. It is important to know that products that are sold in most stores for leather will ruin your furniture. Never use shoe polish on furniture. New methods in manufacturing have made many types of leather more resilient. We recommend contacting leather manufacturers such as Carroll Leather® for more in-depth care and cleaning instructions. Their experts will be able to guide you on how to care for your leather furniture. www.clgco.com As Benjamin Franklin famously stated over two hundred years ago, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure". This certainly applies to living happily ever after with leather. MADE FOR YOU™
Photography by Carlson Productions
From FACTORY to
Workroom TURNING THEIR WORKROOM INTO MY WORKROOM
Mary Evelyn McKee was destined to become an
interior designer. Raised in Birmingham, Alabama, she spent her childhood learning to see beauty around her as she enjoyed painting classes with her grandmother. Her father, also an artist, helped fuel this passion as Mary Evelyn developed her own artistic eye. Her mother, an accomplished pianist, taught her children the importance of tempo and movement to Mozart and Bach. Spending time at the family's business, she spent her teenage years fully immersed in the design department learning about fine fabrics, furniture, drapery, rugs and accessories. With a wonderful foundation and deep appreciation for the arts, Mary Evelyn attended Hollins College where she studied art history, decorative arts and architecture. Returning to Birmingham, her talents led her MADE FOR YOU™
to develope a style has allowed her to not only create residential and commercial projects, but also specialize in renovation and historic restoration. It is the ability to make something current in respect of the architecture and lifestyle and not just make it modern that is a signature of her work. She shares, "I seek to portray a sense of place reflecting harmony, balance and beauty." With the client's taste and lifestyle established, she engages with each contractor from the architect to the landscape designer. Perhaps it is a bit of Southern sensibility and hospitality, but her clients appreciate this holistic approach that allows her to design spaces to connect the indoors and outdoors. Recently, Mary Evelyn completed a two-year project for a long-time friend, Margot Shaw, Editor-In-Chief of Flower. This labor of love began as these kindred spirits began their journey of selecting pieces from the chosen companies that would be featured in her show house. For Mary Evelyn and Margot, they were thrilled that Hickory Chair was selected as they not only appreciated the quality and product assortment but also that the furniture was American made from fine materials sourced around the world. The Hickory, North Carolina facility was not merely a factory, but a workroom that not only offered nearly endless options but also invited special construction to allow the majority of its products to be made to designer specification. Understanding Margot's taste and hopes for her new Brierfield home, Mary Evelyn began the journey of not only recommending pieces but also thoughtfully visualizing how they could be personalized by the company's craftspeople for Margot. The Silhouettes Upholstery collection with its nearly endless options provided luxurious English-arm lounge chairs with dressmaker skirts for Margot and a companion leather lounge chair for Gates along with a Made to Measure cocktail ottoman for the family room. Gates only request was a really comfortable leather lounge chair by the fireplace. For the study, a narrow track-arm sleep sofa with a dressmaker skirt was the perfect solution for overnight guests. She selected a Made to Measure Console to be made to a specific size and then be finished in a custom version of Venetian Blue. The standard gold highlights were removed as the 'bling' was not appropriate for the aesthetic of the home. Long before pneumatic staples guns were invented, textiles were attached to a frame with tacks. Mary Evelyn found flat-head tacks and requested that they be used in lieu of traditional spaced nail head trim on a pair of Candler twin beds in the guest bedroom. Employing the talents of the artists at Hickory Chair, a pair of side tables were chosen as nightstands for the master bedroom. The artisans hand-painted the 'squiggle' pattern on the top and shelves and the frame was painted in optional Weathered Black paint. "My favorite pieces are the Spool Chair and Ottoman. I have always loved these pieces but not the casters. I asked the workroom to make them with the turnings to the floor. Matched with the Galbraith & Paul® fabric, they are perfect for the room, the aesthetic and for Margot," shared Mary Evelyn. She continues, "Every piece came in perfectly. Each special construction was executed flawlessly. I knew I could trust Hickory Chair." 18
“I seek to portray a sense of place reflecting harmony, balance and beauty.” - Mary Evelyn McKee
looking ahead Great Product… and Great Information Spring is such a time of hope and renewal.
In the “before times” we would all be in the midst of starting or accelerating new projects, new developments and new relationships. Spring in the Furniture and Décor industry has always been about the future. Of course, times are still not “normal” and while we are beginning to glance up to the horizon once again, we all, from Designer to Manufacturer, are still being defined by the job of logistics first. Here at Hickory Chair we are hyper-focused on the second critical product that we produce each and every day: information. As a furniture manufacturer we cut, glue, sew, staple, spray, rub and love the beautiful products that we fabricate daily. They are the physical manifestation of our culture and our beliefs… they embody our pride as a company. However, in the midst of the pandemic “supply chain knot” that we have all been living, we were faced as a company with the very clear realization that the ”other product” which we produce is just as critical. Information… clear, reliable, trustworthy information is the life-blood of any good design business and, on a daily basis, is handled and delivered more often than the furniture itself.
In today’s business environment, how a company invests in the creation and flow of their information is just as important as how they invest in the production of their products. Dates, pricing, options, images, dimensions… these are the information equivalents to fabrics, finishes, leathers, hardware and frames. That is why in the past months we have invested in a complete overhaul of our websites, our core databases, our sub-supplier communication tools and our order processing tools. Creating and delivering great information in parallel with our great furniture is and will be foundational to who we are. We want to be the most Trusted furniture company in the world and trust is in the details.
Alex Shuford President, Hickory Chair CEO, Rock House Farm
Verdun Side Table
Auburn Small Stool
The Suzanne Kasler® Collection Suzanne Kasler® Collection 6062 Taylor Road • Naples, FL 34109 • 239.449.3283 • www.hickorychair.com/naples 1785 Northgate Blvd • Sarasota, FL 34234 • 941.552.2552 • www.hickorychair.com/sarasota
Auburn Large Stool