Out of the Woods


COMPILED BY Annemarie Meintjes

How do you celebrate the joy of making without using unsustainable raw materials? We’re looking to wood – and ANNEMARIE MEINTJES rounded up some of her favourite designs.


London designer Paul Cocksedge, whose original solutions to public-space dilemmas never fail to surprise, invites the public to sit on undulating, concentric benches made from upcycled scaffolding planks with this installation. “Please Be Seated” is made of three rings of benches that rise and fall in a wave-like pattern; where the waves meet the ground, they form benches that rise up to create backrests. The widest circle 15.2m, and the tallest element of the piece is 3.4m.


French furniture company Bleu Nature, founded by designer Frank Lefebvre, produces pieces that use driftwood and other objects found by scouring beaches and forests near Lille in France as their primary materials. These are combined with manmade materials to create harmonious juxtapositions. The Outline collection – in which the free, natural shape of driftwood is reinterpreted – is both organic and industrial, with raw wood and black steel combining to create fluid lines.



Taking the driftwood concept to ever greater heights, Bleu Nature used it as a primary material when constructing this hut-like space in their showroom. It was used as a display area during one of the company’s sales weekends. The stools, upholstered in natural leather and suede, are part of Bleu Nature’s furniture range. We just love the gold finish.


Anton Brunberg, a graduate of Design Academy Eindhoven, calculated that there are currently about six-billion pallets in circulation worldwide, most of them made from wood. Each year, one percent of these pallets reach the end of their lifespan or are lost. Tapping into this global supply, Brunberg says, provides him with all the materials he needs to carry on doing what he loves with a clean conscience – and the result is pieces such as this monumental chair.

Looking for ways to incorporate this material into your own space? Here are 11 wooden buys handpicked by VISI to get you started.