One of the obvious drawbacks to being a furniture maker is that it’s quite hard to slip your own thoughts and interpretations in to a piece of furnishing. I mean, this is an age old craft and there’s not too much room for improvement. You really have to think outside the box and contemplate what’s come before, how you can make an impact by altering and building upon. That’s why I was so impressed with designer and craftsman Benjamin Klebba who makes beautiful furniture under the studio name Phloem.
Founded in 2009, the name Phloem was taken from the word for the vascular structure in plants that provide nutrients through photosynthesis. Benjamin’s background is in building both sailboats and acoustic guitars, he’s now turned this passion for wood and directed it in to furniture making. Not only are the forms simple and elegant, he pays particular attention to the details and has ended up with some really innovative seating and shelving solutions.
For example the leather pull tags on the sideboards. They’re both functional and discreet, they also add a nice touch to the overall aesthetic and this isn’t something that I’ve come across before. I also like the way that he’s angled the chairs in such a way that other items can slot underneath, such as a footrest or how the chairs stack up, it’s these little touches that go a long way. As they say, it’s all in the details! Ben works out of his studio in Oregon, with the emphasis to transcend any trend of fad and create furniture that’s contemporary and modern with traditional values of quality. He’s certainly done this and I can’t wait to see what else he creates in the near future.