In the southeast United States, where the Tennessee River dips south into Alabama, scooping out one corner and then turning back north toward its namesake state, the land is peppered with gracious old grand dames. Walnut, oak, maple, and cherry trees tower over historic plantations and new developments, beckoning to children young and old to climb, relax, and daydream on and under their shady branches.
Sadly, there comes a time in every tree’s life when she falls. Whether taken down by a storm, Mother Nature’s own timeline, or by humans for the name of development or safety, when a grand dame comes down near his Florence, Alabama, Slow Studio, Robin Wade is there to pick up the pieces. “I enjoy giving these trees a second life,” he says of the breathtaking, one-of-a-kind sustainable furniture pieces he crafts from locally harvested trees. Wade’s strict environmental policy is simple; he only works with trees that are harvested within a 60-mile radius of his slow studio.
At Robin Wade Furniture, the entire production process mirrors an extensive effort to promote ecological balance and organic sustainability. The wood we use is harvested from our lush, southern hardwood forests, primarily within a 60-mile radius from the Florence, Alabama studio. Select urban logs or felled trees are saved from the landfill by our efforts to work hand-in-hand with local city and county governments. We also use downed trees from severe storms and timber with particular historical significance are honored as well.
Robin Wade Furniture's slow studio is in itself a model of ecological thoughtfulness. Far from being a mass production facility, RWF’s slow studio allows the magnificent slabs of wood years to dry, and Robin Wade only creates a limited number of tables each year. Utilizing centuries-old methods, machinery and tools, each piece is finished on-site and transformed into a hand-crafted, one-of-a-kind piece of art meant to last for generations. Scrap wood from the studio is made into even more art pieces and also given away as firewood.