We recently became a Platinum Sponsor for the AID (Alliance of Interior Designers), an interior design community based in the Raleigh Triangle area! What a great and fun opportunity to meet other designers and work with such talented people! Matthew and his craftsmen at Woodleaf look forward to being a valuable asset to the AID community. We can't wait to work with you!
In 2006 we lost a dear friend unexpectedly. And it just so happened that Matthew and his late friend, David Williams, were in the middle of a rather unusual collaboration...to design and build a mosaic table depicting the great cats of the world. Unfinished at the time of Dave's death Matthew wanted to complete the table to honor his friend. Being a professional wildlife artist Dave was brought on board to illustrate the big cats. Matthew designed and orchestrated the project and hired a marquetry artisan to turn Dave's illustrations into wood inlay's for the table. We recently came across photos of the table and wanted to share a sweet memory of a very talented friend. It was a blessing to have known Dave and to have him in our lives for so many years. Dave's incredible drawings of nature will always bring a smile to our faces and warmth to our hearts.
"A friend can never be replaced, but will always be remembered. " - anonymous
We just finished our latest project for a commercial office space. They needed customized adjustable shelving and desks for two of their rooms. Woodleaf fabricated, finished and installed these beautiful, clean, functional and affordable built in desks with heavy duty anodized aluminum brackets. If you have an office space that needs an upgrade Woodleaf can help!
Below are before and after photos of one of the four spaces we transformed.
First Friday was a success! The event was a lot of fun and "Lava Flow" seemed to get some well deserved attention. If you missed coming out last weekend, the VAE will still have this collection of art on display through June. Woodleaf Studios has a beautiful gallery as well if you would like to schedule a time to come to our workspace give us a call at 919-834-2566. We are grateful to be in this community of artists and designers and we look forward to being a part of more events in the future.
In the picture below Matthew (in the hat) is talking with peers about his functional art cabinet "Lava Flow".
Woodleaf is proud to announce that our wall cabinet "Lava Flow" from the "Stump Stories" series has been selected from VAE art call entries for their "Scope '17" exhibit. The reception/opening is on "First Friday" in downtown Raleigh. We would love to see you all there on June 2nd, 2017 from 6-10. Designer and owner of Woodleaf, Matthew Smith, will be there along with other participating artists. Stop on by! The VAE(Visual Art Exchange) address is listed below...
309 E Martin st.
Raleigh NC, 27601
Dimensions of Lava Flow: 13 3/4"w x 58"h x 6 7/16"d
These mirrors were made from our cork collection that we have been building for many years. Upon close inspection you can see that we really like Cabernet Sauvignon. The frames were detailed with stained walnut. There are three still available at our studio.
Inspiration for this table came from a cork collection. The top is persimmon with a live edge. The sturdy base is decorated with corks. It could be used as a coffee table or a bench.
Matthew Smith and Woodleaf Studios love giving back to the arts. In February of this year we donated a wall cabinet "Butterfly" to the VAE's annual fundraiser to support the arts. It was a very fun event and the functional art piece was a big success! We look forward to donating again in the future.
Matthew wanted to embellish our shop entry door. He created the design, painted it on a wooden panel and then attached it to the metal door with magnets. #diy #woodleafstudios #urban #design #geometric
So sometimes the cobblers children do get new shoes! To disprove that old wives tale Matthew designed and built this teak stool for our master bath remodel. This teak darling will be in our new more spacious shower. Having three legs will keep it more stable in the often un level shower environment. We can't wait until the demo starts but the little stool is ready!
A client approached Woodleaf with a concept for their new vanity including a picture below of their basic idea. We interpreted this desire and adapted it to fit their needs.
So our first grandchild arrived a few weeks ago! In anticipation of her arrival Matthew and Woodleaf designed and built this substantial and elegant diaper station for the parents as a Christmas gift. There is a handy hidden drawer for essential supplies while changing baby. The legs are made of cherry and the surfaces are made of walnut. It is finished with clear lacquer.
This large wall system appears built in but actually can be removed by the client should they move and decide to take it with them. It measures 91 inches tall by 102 inches wide and 17 inches deep.
The drop down desk features special hardware called a cable lid stay that yields a soft open and close. The desk also has integrated outlet and USB ports as well as small zebra wood drawers.
The cabinet will be used as a desk and for storage and display. Woodleaf Studios worked very closely with the client to insure all their desires were met for the form and function of this piece.
This table was designed and built by Matthew Smith at Woodleaf Studios. The Kiln, as it is called, is a small side table whose name was inspired by its kiln like shape. The main base of the table consists of a series of stacked maple end grain blocks that create a chimney like kiln effect. At the bottom of the table is a walnut base. The glass top allows you to view the interior pattern of the blocks as well. The design idea was partly influenced by the fabric of the chairs it sits between. The club style chairs were also built by Woodleaf Studios.
Our client wanted us to incorporate their company logo into the design of their work stations. They also wanted the logo to be three dimensional. We up fitted eight existing work tables into two sets of four work stations. The upper band detail features the company logo and is made of mahogany, ash and scored alder and is capped with aluminum. Below each work station is a cabinet that Woodleaf also built.
By examining the detail photos one can see that this was a labor intensive and tedious project but the results reveal wonderful whimsy and detail.
Woodleaf Studios moved to a new space in July. The machines are all up and running, the office and break room have a fresh coat of paint and Matthew and the guys have designed, built and installed some very handsome awnings to go over all the exterior openings. Speaking of openings we will have one soon. But first we need to get our showroom set up. Stay tuned!
Recently Matthew and I were invited to attend a dedication Shabbat for a local Jewish Synagogue's new building where the Ark cabinet that Matthew designed and Woodleaf built was the centerpiece of the ceremony. The Ark cabinet for those of you that are not familiar with Judaism houses the Torahs for the Temple. Matthew educated himself about the significance of the Torahs and the Ark to the Jewish religion in order to develop a design appropriate for the congregation. Matthew met many times with the Temple's design committee and the Rabbi. He also attended a bar mitzvah in order to better understand the role of the Ark cabinet in the services. After countless hours spent on his design he presented it to the committee and they were quite pleased. The Ark took two and a half months for Woodleaf to build.
The Ark is very large at 82 1/2 inches wide, 41 inches deep and 10 feet high. It has a three dimensional door front with 12 Star of David's depicted that represent the 12 Tribes of Israel which is of religious significance. The mechanism for opening the large door consists of 75 pounds of lead weights for counterbalance, a solid brass pulley, and a sash rope in order to keep the system quiet as it moves. The door is lockable but the lock is not visible from the front of the cabinet.
The interior of the cabinet features a back panel of 960 pieces of beveled ash for added dimension and detail. There is a closet switch that automatically illuminates the inside of the cabinet when it is opened with a concealed LED light strip.
The cabinet was made from cherry plywood, cherry solids, walnut and ash. It was finished with a light aniline stain and clear lacquer.
In January Woodleaf Studios donated this wall cabinet to The Methodist Home for Children's annual fundraiser. It is the second year that we have donated a piece to this great cause. The cabinet face is comprised of maple burl from the stump of a tree. The visible pattern is achieved by spreading the 1/4 inch slices of maple apart like a deck of cards. The cabinet is banded with walnut and has several adjustable shelves on the interior. We actually have a similar cabinet in our kitchen that Matthew designed and built of walnut and maple. We use it to store all our supplements and cold remedies etc.. It is functional art as seen below.
Recently a long time administrator and supporter of the Central YMCA in Raleigh commissioned Matthew to design and build a coffee table incorporating a saved section of the old gym floor from the 60s era YMCA. Several sections of the old basketball court were saved at the time of renovation. Some were used for artwork in the new lobby of the YMCA. While Matthew created a conversation piece for an athletic family's family room. Woodleaf Studios took apart the 1 inch thick solid maple tung and groove flooring by removing nails, then they glued the floor pieces together and planed off the old finish and paint. They finished the table with orange shellac and a clear lacquer top coat. The base is made of sapele, a mahogany like wood. The edges of the top reveal the tung and groove pattern of the floor.
So rather than having a book as the conversation piece the table itself serves that purpose!
Our daughter was in the play "Much Ado About Nothing" at her high school this Fall. As it is her senior year, I thought it would be nice if we did something big to help out the show. Turns out the director said they needed a bridge. So I donated Matthew's time and expertise to the cause. We sort of have a running inside joke that I always underestimate the time and effort required for a project, and that was the case here as well. Matthew had never built a bridge before so once again he had a design and engineering challenge. Fortunately, or maybe unfortunately, depending on how you look at it, Matthew and the guys at the shop were "in between" paying projects and had some free time for the bridge construction. Matthew developed the design based on a photo of a bridge the director gave him. The results were well received! She even said that now she will be thinking of plays for the school to perform that involve a bridge.