custom door hardware

Limited Edition Door Handles

Limited Edition Door handles
We are a limited production company making finely detailed hand-made door hardware but our grapevine heroic door handle is a limited edition and here we examine both concepts.

All of our hardware is made using the lost wax method of casting and each piece is always chased by hand and finished by hand, which is a production process that simply does not work for industrial manufactures making 100’s or thousands of door handles. As artisans we are able to focus on smaller quantities which ensures that we can produce high quality unique and we hope more interesting pieces. In this sense our work is similar to that of the boutique or small winery who by virtue of their size are able to put more care into their craft than larger wineries.
Continuing the analogy the Grapevine Heroic door pull is akin to a small celebratory edition of wine where the number of bottle is limited to a few cases. The door pull was designed as a statement piece for wine collectors and is scaled for large wine cellar doors. The pull is made with the same care as any other piece but it’s scale, design and complexity warranted the added value of a finite edition of 100 pieces. Being 42” high and with 3 intricate sections the waxes are made personally by Martin Pierce who shapes and refines the smallest of details so that each piece is truly unique. Each piece is numbered and signed by Martin at the wax stage and we are currently at number 15.


Our hardware designs evolved from our work as furniture makers where we offered limited editions for the Vine Highboy (100) Aspen Buffet (30) and Aspen armoire (50).
The small number of the edition and the price point ensure that the edition will take several years to complete with each piece being fresh to the artists eye.

Using a heated scalpel and hand chisel Martin removes small imperfections from the wax

Using a heated scalpel and hand chisel Martin removes small imperfections from the wax

A Swarm of Bees Inspires a Collage of Bee Knobs

This has been the most remarkable spring but the arrival of a swarm of bees was as unexpected as it was spectacular. On Sunday we heard loud buzzing from our front garden and spent the next hour watching the process of hundreds of bees settling in our Brazilian Pepper Tree. What began as a few bees over the next hour became a mass all huddling together to protect the queen. By evening the swarm had settled in and become calm as the temperature cooled and their rest time commenced.

While we knew that the Queen was at the center of this colony, we did not fully understand why this event had occurred so turned to the internet. The queen increases the size of the colony by laying eggs that become worker bees and so the colony grows until it eventually it out-grows the hive at which point the queen lays a few queen eggs. The queen then leaves the hive before the new queen bee hatches and takes with her about half of the worker bees to journey onwards to begin a new hive. We were lucky spectators at the point where the queen and her followers had set out in search of a suitable location for their new home and had decided to rest over-night in our tree. At no point did the swarm pose any threat to us as we passively looked on from a safe distance remaining still save for the photos we took.

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The following morning the queen and her entourage waited to be warmed by the sun before continuing on their quest.

I was inspired by the sight of these live bees to create a playful collage using our polished bee door knob with a back-drop of dark honeycomb roses which is the most well-known handle set from our Netsuke collection of animal door handles.

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More to life than door handles

The rains have turned the area we live in into a beautiful landscape full of trees in blossom and nesting birds in what is still a dense but thriving urban environment.

With the recent 3-day weekends we have been able to walk for hours in the Hollywood hills and were able to capture some lovely and surprising views.

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What is always startling is how quickly the grasses spring to life and turn the hills into a verdant intensely green landscape. While the Hollywood sign is a familiar view it is great to see it through a curtain of green leaves.

The bottle bush trees are a familiar sight but when in full foliage they take on the character of a weeping willow with their fine dropping branches. In the Willow sprig pull these flowing tendrils are captured in molten bronze. The handles are available as either right or left cabinet pulls but, in the photo, we accentuated their weight by superimposing these 2 handles.

Mule deer also reside in these hills and we saw whole families of them grazing happily on the lush vegetation.

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We spotted a pair of ravens preening each other whilst perched on a bare sycamore branch.

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Several of the photos were taken from the vantage point of the Hollywood reservoir which is also a great place for bird spotting as it is frequented by herons, egrets and the occasional osprey.

Modern cabinet pulls and nickel plating

Nickel is a hard corrosion resistant metal and it is one of the components in 316 stainless steel that we use in many of our door handle and cabinet pull castings. Nickel is also used to plate metal and a thin layer is deposited onto the surface through the electro-plating process. The nickel layer can be used to protect the base metal from corrosion and wear but it can also be used to create a decorative finish. We offer nickel plating as a custom finish and recently plated our Hedgerow branch pulls over a bronze base to achieve a more rustic look.

In an earlier post we detailed how we modified the Hedgerow branch pull to accommodate a bank of kitchen cabinets where space was tight and traffic was high. As there were only a handful of pieces it would not have been cost effective to make a new pattern and mold so we modified each of the 9 cabinet pulls when they were still in the wax stage by sculpting each piece. The two wax mounting posts were cut and repositioned and the ends of the tree canopy were cut and re-sculpted making each pull shorter and self-returning.

Mounting posts were re-positioned and ends shortened in the wax stage

Mounting posts were re-positioned and ends shortened in the wax stage

Once cast, the pulls were buffed, cleaned and plated. Nickel plating is versatile and can be used over polished or matt surfaces and can be finished in a range of light to dark patinas. In this instance we were matching the new pieces to ones that were installed 18 months ago but as we had a sample Boyles Snyder were able to make a perfect match.

New Directions in Custom Door Hardware, Lighting and Art

Starting a new year always provides impetus for new designs for our wide range of door hardware, lighting and now art. While the creative process lacks boundaries, the demands of work place requires that we treat these 3 areas differently, with “art” still being relegated to third position almost as an indulgence. This year we intend to indulge ourselves.


Art

Over the last few years when time permitted Martin Pierce has been sculpting and painting large scale insects and what he sees as their small-scale humanoid companions, the scale is deliberate and focuses attention on the species that matters. Sculpting insects began when Martin sculpted his first “Hornet on Apple” sculpture which was carved in Yew- wood in England in 1977. His most recent insect sculptures are stag beetles rendered in bronze or steel and available as single freestanding pieces or as dueling pairs mounted on tree bark cast in bronze

Tall Door Handles

Perhaps another indulgence but the scale of large door grips provides the opportunity to create some beautiful pieces. The brand of a hotel or resort can at once both inspire and restrain a design and that challenge is what makes custom commercial door handles fun to conceive and cast.

Lighting

As our door grips become longer so too do the illuminated Morphic door handles. These organic lace- like handles will be customized in 2019 to offer a range of lengths from 16” to 64” and we are experimenting with a version of this handle that would have alternating sections of steel and bronze.




Fine Details Define Luxury Door Hardware

I have recently been tasked with organizing hundreds of photographs we have for our door handles, cabinet pulls and bathroom accessories and so have been revisiting some of the close -up shots of our more detailed unusual handles and decided to share some of the images in a post.

The phrase “the devil is in the details” sums up perfectly our view on fine door hardware but where did the phrase come from and what does it mean when applied to door hardware? A google search brought me to the site; phrases.org.uk which is devoted to the origin of sayings, and is well worth bookmarking. The phrase probably dates back to the 1800’s and is attributed to several likely authors and originally was expressed as “the God is in the details” and like the modern version suggests that whatever one makes should be done well and with due regard for the finer points or details.

As hardware artists this has shaped our door hardware in 2 distinctive ways;

When creating the original pattern Martin Pierce spends hours, days and often weeks carving fine details into the wooden pattern to achieve an intricate piece that will become the parent of all the castings that are made from the mold. Devoting the time it takes to create these artistic details jettisons our work into the luxury market.

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The mantra also impacts the lengths we will go to achieve the completeness of a style. In our lizard collection it was important that the ancillary trim for the door lock followed the lizard theme, so we spent time planning and designing a very natural accompaniment.

Similarly, when tasked with a commission for a Willow style cremone latch while the commission did not specify a custom trim for the bolt, this was a detail we felt was needed for completeness.

Art Nouveau a lasting inspiration

We have written about our love of Art Nouveau and are now taking a trip to Brussels in homage of Victor Horta, one of the pioneers and master of this organic and fluid style of architecture. We left England in the 80’s with an appreciation of the French masters in this field but did not become familiar with the Brussels legend until meeting Kareem Abdul- Jabbar also a legend and an Art Nouveau enthusiast. Martin was hired to fabricate the entry door, interior doors and stair rails for his Bel Air residence. When we arrive in Brussels and see Horta’s work in person we will share this experience in a later post. Meanwhile I want to focus on this local residence where the styles of Horta, Guimar and Mucha came together to create a splendid home.

Kareem-bel-air

 

The front door was carved from Honduras mahogany as a collection of over-sized irises in a style reminiscent of Alphonse Mucha’s colorful posters. The interior of the front door borrowed its direction from Guimard but for the main archways and interior doors the whiplash center of the casement molding and tweezed hair design of the corners are much truer to Horta’s work.

Kareem

 

Horta’s aesthetic can also be seen in the large interior doors especially where wood meets glass and the birds eye maple panel is bisected by a central astragal carved as a budding tendril.

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The stair rail was made in sections of solid bronze using a cow parsley pattern carved by Martin and based on the floral works of Mucha.

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Mushroom Cabinet Knobs and Pulls

When is a mushroom a cabinet knob and when is it a cabinet pull?  Until last week I thought the question was at best a case of semantics and at worst a case of pedantry, but I stand firmly corrected as the wrong word choice can result in oblivion. I am not alas an expert in the field of SEO but when describing our cabinet accessories my primary focus has been on the design element, in this case mushrooms, with my secondary focus being the shape of a piece, if round a knob, if vertical or horizontal, a pull.

 

What had not occurred to me is that the word “mushroom” has on the internet come to mean button mushroom shape and so all manner of cabinet knobs that have no resemblance to a mushroom happily populate the image section for this search term.

Why does this bother me, have I perhaps been eating the wrong mushrooms?  Rest assured my concern has nothing to do with what I have been ingesting but has a lot to do with becoming frustrated with searches that come up short on fungi.

 

Thankfully there are some very talented and tenacious designers like Suzanne Childress  out there who know a mushroom pull/knob when they see one and who take the time to search through the maze to find the right piece for their client. My sincere thanks to Suzanne for finding our elusive pieces.

 

Ergo Epic Pull In a Black Powder Coated Finish

So what do powder coating, grab bars and epic door handles have in common?

Answer: A creative designer meeting the special needs of an artistic client.

We derive immense satisfaction from working with creative designers and over the years have collaborated with many to  customize our designs so they will meet a client’s specific needs.

Diane Morrison is a designer who we first worked with when we adapted  our Grapevine door handle for use  as a hand rail on a corridor wall. Diane is based in Downingtown Pennsylvania and often works with contractor Merv Landis on her local  installations. Recently Diane approached us to see which of our Ergo designs could be adapted for use as a grab bar in a powder room project.  The room had existing pewter and iron trim and while the client wanted to continue with these metal tones we needed to   use a more sturdy metal and one that would hold up to  moisture.  Stainless steel as a rust resistant alloy was an obvious choice but  many of the patinas one can apply to it are not sufficiently durable.  Diane sent us a color chip and with Dan Regan’s help at Primo Powder Coat we were able to find the right powder to bake onto our stainless steel handrail to create a highly durable finish.

The Ergo epic pull was the perfect choice of design from this series being a sturdy 35” handle but we were dealing with an existing space where the supporting studs were spaced at 16” intervals and the Ergo mounting posts were set at 34”. Merv  Landis solved the problem by creating a  sturdy brace inside the interior wall that spanned 2 sets of studs and provided a solid structure for our lags bolts to screw to.

 

To reach Diane Morrison please contact her: dianedmd@gmail.com

Unusual Refrigerator Door Handles - what to consider

High end refrigerator manufactures like Sub-zero allow consumers to customize the look of their refrigerator by selecting handles that will complement the style of their cabinet handles but deciding what handles will work both aesthetically and practically can be a challenge.

As a door hardware designer and manufacturer we thought we should review some of our handles to see which do and don’t work well for this use.

Before reviewing the styles there are some practical points to consider;

1.       You will need to order your refrigerator without the manufacturer’s standard issue handles and without the door being pre-drilled for the standard handle and also without the standard mounting brackets. The manufacturer will have their own door handle size and this is unlikely to be the same as the custom alternative.

2.       The alternative custom handle can then be installed either directly onto the refrigerator door or on to a custom panel that is being fabricated by your kitchen cabinet maker.

3.       Door pulls or grips rather than knobs work best as they allow you to more easily open the refrigerator if your hands are wet or full. A round or flat 90 degree angle is sadly the typical style for most refrigerator pulls and while these are easy to grip they are typically non-descript so use this as your practical starting point.

4.       While there is no standard length that is recommended for a refrigerator the grip will need to be attached at 2 points to the door panel and will need to be sturdy enough in size and width to easily open the door without difficulty and without coming lose after repeated use.

5.       You will need a professional cabinet maker or contractor to install the alternative handle in accordance with any manufacturer warranty guidelines.

Styles that work:

We see the kitchen area as a work space with surfaces that will need to be easily cleaned. My preference is to use more fluid slick styles without a lot of undercuts or filigree that will be difficult to clean. The Ergo and Morphic styles with the exception of the Morphic cylinder are good choices and look wonderful in stainless steel which will complement most refrigerator doors.

If you are using a wooden custom door then consider the Morphic and Ergo styles in bronze but with a baked enamel clear protective coating to help.

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Tall Door Grips - How the Design Begins

Lately, in large part at the behest of designers, we have begun to design some very grand scaled door grips for the public areas of hotels and clubs. The size and shape of a door handle does influence the handles design, with long narrow grips dictating a more compact motif and with wider panels allowing for a more expansive forms.

In short, our designs for tall door grips fall broadly into these 2 categories and we have begun by focusing first on the more restrictive long thin pulls which one typically sees on storefront and bank doors and with lengths varying from 40” to 72”. We are using 60” as our optimum design canvas and are creating decorative segments of 18” and 24” that can be repeated or interspersed with other designs or plainer sections so that we have the capability of creating custom lengths for each project.

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The segmented and narrow width of our design canvas impacts the freedom, balance and logic of our design. As a starting point Martin began by looking to the utilitarian and geometric shapes of the 1920’s Art Déco period and the influence of these repetitive bold lines can be seen in the sketch below. He also used his own Hedgerow furniture designs to create an angular tree branch motif.   These sketches are at this point concept drawings and we will be refining them over the next few weeks.

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New Grapevine Door Knob Added to Wine Cellar Door Handle Collection

Our grapevine door handle collection has, until now, focused on capturing the gnarly quality of vine stems and the distinctive serrated shape of their leaves, with less attention on the grapes themselves.  This focus worked well for creating long door grips and horizontal door levers but was not well suited for a door knob.  

With this in mind, we began work on a new vine door knob and in our July 12th post  shared with you how Martin Pierce created detailed  perspective drawings as guidelines for his 3 dimensional wood pattern. The pattern was carved in basswood, sealed with primer and used to create a 2 piece hollow core mold. Red wax was poured into the mold and several wax replicas were made. The wax facsimiles were then coated with successive layers of fine ceramic slurry to form an outer wall and the pieces  were baked to form a rigid ceramic shell.  Once baked, the ceramic shells were  heated in a de-waxing  autoclave and steam was  pumped into the shell to remove the wax. The wax was then  filtered, cleaned  and  recycled for future use. The de-waxed shell was subsequently invested with molten bronze and after cooling, the gates that delivered the fluid metal were ground away and the bronze casting was ready to “chased” or refined by hand.

Vine door knob.jpg

Seven weeks later and we have now machined our first castings, added the spindle and  internal springs, fitted our existing vine leaf back-plate and finished by hand our first pieces.  We hope you like this new addition to the collection.

 

New LED Door Handles and The Year in Review

As we move on to the post eclipse week we thought we thought it would be fitting to give an updated report on what milestones we have met and what lie ahead.

Following on from the successful listing of our LED lit door handles and wall sconces we have completed our initial UL inspection and so designers may be assured that the our UL approved fixtures will bare an indelible UL label. To help designers understand our LED single color and color changing fixtures we have developed a series of helpful installation diagrams as well as charts that will help explain what accessories will work best with our products to view these please download our pdf for Coral or our Illuminated products.

While the LED lighting scene constantly evolves with smaller brighter and more energy efficient units our focus is on designing and making decorative fixtures that work with this new technology. Our fixtures are hard wired and illuminated either by a small spot or by a strip of LED chips. The type of LED impacts our design, as spots are better suited to our round, down lit sconces and cylinders, while the linear strip inside the perimeter of our door panels project a forward directional light that we use to create our fish and coral shapes. The next piece in development for our panel series is a tiger design which will soon be released. The panel concept is also being extended to include a longer rectangular 26" x 4" panel and the first piece will be from our Willow designs.

Wasp and Insect Cabinet Pulls

To say that Martin Pierce is fascinated by insects would be an understatement and it explains why insects and their habitat figure so much in his cabinet pulls as well as his paintings, sculpture and furniture. 

This fascination is not shared by all but we have found that many of our gardening neighbors understand the role that these creatures play in helping to keep their gardens free of voracious caterpillars and from the adult flies such white-fly that they become. At the weekend Martin was able to snap a shot of a beautiful mud dauber wasp, named for the way it daubs mud to create individual chambers for each of its lava.  The wasp catches a caterpillar and entombs it in the lava's pod like chamber thus providing a constant food source for the developing lava that when it pupates will emerge as a strikingly colored wasp. The nest chambers are equally impressive and are made of multiple layers of mud built up over a period of days that dry and harden to become robust adobe like homes. Once the caterpillar has been deposited the wasp then lays an egg on it and secures the chamber with more mud.

This architectural skill  is one that is found in other species and we have seen swallows build nests using a similar approach. What makes the dauber wasp awe inspiring is how she creates her chambers to be just the right size and strength to support the larder and her offspring. Where are her blueprints, where is her scaffolding, apparently they are not required.

Large Exterior Door Pulls

With the continued surge in construction we are seeing more demand for large exterior door pulls and ladder pulls both in the commercial and residential sectors. In the early 2000 period our large “Heroic” door handles topped out at a mere 19” for our Hedgerow and Ergo handles but by 2012 we responded to demand and revised our Ergo series to include an epic 35” tall handle. Clearly though the demand continues for even more gargantuan pieces and so we are about to launch our newest “Grand” Ergo door handle which will be 54” high with a 1 ½” diameter.

Making larger scale handles is both stylistically and technically challenging. The iconic Ergo shape began as a mere 12” cabinet door pull that was subsequently rescaled to a 35” handle. The stylistic challenge was how to keep the fluid contours of such a small piece yet make it substantial enough to work as a large exterior door pull but not so substantial that the diameter would be difficult to grip by those with disabilities.

While our soon to be launched Grand Ergo handle posed the same stylistic challenges, it also has presented us with technical casting demands. At a height of 54” and with such a curvaceous shape we decided to cast the handle in two 27” sections.  Had we tried to make a single mold the weight of it would have made it unwieldy and we would run the risk of the steel  prematurely cooling before it reached the end of the mold. To make the handle a continuous 54” length our craftsmen will then seamlessly weld the 2 sections to create on long exterior pull.

 

However, our move into this grand scale market is by no means over and we are currently working on designs for 2 projects at 6’ and 9’ so stay tuned.

Arts and Crafts Movement Inspiration for Door Hardware

One of our earliest introductions to the American arts and crafts movement came when we discovered the Gamble House in Pasadena. This gem is a perfect example of the craftsmanship and artistry that is the name sake of this organic architectural style. When we arrived in Los Angeles we started out as a small furniture company that specialized in hand carved pieces so it is not surprising  that we were awestruck by the design brilliance of the Green and Green brothers who were commissioned by the Gambles to design their home.  The Gamble house offers a wonderful insight into households living in a less technological world and one where construction techniques were integral to whole aesthetic of the house. When constructing the walnut stair hand rail and cabinets the carpenters used peg joints rather than mortise joints which gave the joint strength but also added a decorative contrast. The carpenter would hand drill a round hole into the walnut and then using a square walnut  peg  he would hammer this into the hole to create a strong and contrasting joint.

While we had a fleeting introduction to the Arts and Crafts style in England this had been limited to viewing exhibitions of William Morris’s textile and wallpaper designs where entwining acanthus leaves and brambles were common subjects. Together these movements have channeled some of our cabinet pulls as can be seen in our Hedgerow drawer knobs. The patterns for these pieces were carved in wax by Martin Pierce and after molds had been formed these designs were rendered in bronze using the lost wax method of casting.

One of our earliest introductions to the American arts and crafts movement came when we discovered the Gamble House in Pasadena. This gem is a perfect example of the craftsmanship and artistry that is the name sake of this organic architectural style. When we arrived in Los Angeles we started out as a small furniture company that specialized in hand carved pieces so it is not surprising  that we were awestruck by the design brilliance of the Green and Green brothers who were commissioned by the Gambles to design their home.  The Gamble house offers a wonderful insight into households living in a less technological world and one where construction techniques were integral to whole aesthetic of the house. When constructing the walnut stair hand rail and cabinets the carpenters used peg joints rather than mortise joints which gave the joint strength but also added a decorative contrast. The carpenter would hand drill a round hole into the walnut and then using a square walnut  peg  he would hammer this into the hole to create a strong and contrasting joint.

While we had a fleeting introduction to the Arts and Crafts style in England this had been limited to viewing exhibitions of William Morris’s textile and wallpaper designs where entwining acanthus leaves and brambles were common subjects. Together these movements have channeled some of our cabinet pulls as can be seen in our Hedgerow drawer knobs. The patterns for these pieces were carved in wax by Martin Pierce and after molds had been formed these designs were rendered in bronze using the lost wax method of casting.

Paso Robles A Destination Place for Wine Enthusiasts

As spring drifts to summer so we drifted north 350 miles to the still green countryside of Paso Robles.  We have been re-charging our culinary and artistic batteries in this delightful countryside for 15 years and have seen it change from an agricultural community to an  acclaimed wine making hub.

While some may debate the merits of such intense viticulture and the orderly tidiness that now characterizes much of the scenery, few would contest that the region is home to some of the best wineries in the state.

As the wineries have grown so has the breadth of wines now grown with the historical Zinfandel now co-existing with Syrah’s, Grenaches and Tempranillo varietals. As a white wine imbiber who shuns chardonnays I have been thrilled to see that Sauvignon Blanc and Viogniers  are gaining audience awareness and acceptance even amongst those who are fond of their oaky siblings.

However what I had not realized until this visit was how the wineries have now sought to attract customer by serving gourmet meals often locally sourced. The case in point was to be found on Vineyard (aptly named road in the Adelaida district) when we stumbled upon Opolo Winery in search of lunch and for a very modest sum feasted on roast lamb tacos served with tomatillo and red salsa and corn tortillas. The roasted meats all paired wonderfully and surprisingly with their Albarino white wine which was full bodied with slightly sweet citrus tones. The view from the wineries hilltop marquis was also stunning and the breeze it offered was a welcome relief for what proved to be one of the hottest Sundays this year.

 

If you are planning a trip to Paso Robles you may  help navigating your way through the200 wineries it now boasts but  help is on hand courtesy of www.pasorobleswineries.net where you can download a complimentary map.

Classical Door Hardware Now Trending

Lately we have been focusing on LED technology which has made it possible to introduce color changing lights into our new panel and cylindrical door handles.

With all the hype afforded LED luminaires it is easy to lose sight of the importance of classical door hardware. Lately more designers have been specifying our Willow and Grapevine styles of door hardware which are more classical in style and which take on a distinctive traditional elegance when cast in solid bronze.

This recent trend prompted a Google search into the meaning of “classical” and I found the results enlightening. The word comes from the Latin “classicus” as in class or group and has over time become synonymous with words that include; pure, restrained, harmonious, elegant and balanced.

In England the word classical is also used to suggest rank or superiority and can be used to mean that something is “outstanding of its kind” or “exemplary” as in the phrase a “classical piece of Wedgwood China” or “a classical Victorian romance novel”

The more I searched the more I discovered the breadth of this word which can be used to indicate a significant period of an area of study, such as in classical mechanics or as in the case of classical physics, to denote theories that preceded Newton’s theories of relativity and quantum mechanics.

While I had an intuitive understanding of this adjective, the Google search has brought me full circle and made me hopeful that in the future this adjective may be used by some to describe our new LED luminaires.

Moths and Butterflies- It is the Season for Insect Cabinet Knobs

We have this year enjoyed a refreshingly wet winter here in LA and as a result have an abundance of flowering trees and foliage so it should come as no surprise that we have a large insect population. While we may not enjoy the large mosquito population the moths and butterflies are a breathtaking delight. Attracted by white light, we usually glimpse hawk moths hanging on our patio wall but this year we are finding them in the house on closets, on shutters and in the bathroom.

We had a preview of what we could expect by insect life when the long legged ganglycrane flies started arriving. The sheer number of crane flies, which are often mistaken for gigantic mosquitoes, was so large that it has almost cured my phobia of this marginally attractive insect. However, when it comes to moths and butterflies their sheer beauty is undeniable and their shape and color have always been a source of inspiration for Martin

While bronze can be colored by applying ferrous nitrate to a heated area to make a yellow amber patina or by applying copper nitrate for blue tone these patinas cannot begin to replicate the complex patterns that moths display in nature. So when portraying moths and butterflies in bronze, Martin has focused on the elegant and dramatic shapes of their wings and bodies and the natural gripping points that occur where the wings join the thorax.

Contemporary Door Handle Meets Art Nouveau source

We have added a new video to our video gallery and now have 2 videos that show the full range of door handles that use tree motifs. The latest video is short but still manages to show the three dimensional nature of this iconic handle which is shown in brushed stainless steel and as a handle set, with one left and one right tree.

The video shows the fluid nature of this sculpture and the close up shots focus on the depth of the details in the leaf, root and canopy areas of the tree design. By panning across the tree trunks and up the profile of the canopy our video director, Jeff Jenkins, has been able to capture the shadows cast by the leaf canopy. The video was shot very simply using mainly natural light and this in conjunction with the dark ash doors gives the video an old moody black and white quality.  The mood of the video is in contrast to the medium of stainless steel which it often pegged for more contemporary settings.  By shooting the video this way, Jeff Jenkins shows us how thin the line is between the older rich and colorful style of Art Nouveau and the current trend towards monochromatic linear designs. 

While the Hedgerow tree is shot in stainless steel, for those preferring the warmer tones of bronze, fear not, as this piece will always be available in the timeless medium of bronze.

All of our work is designed and made in Los Angeles and can be seen by prior appointment at our studio.