Perhaps there is no purer peace than a few quiet moments to sit and wonder on one’s favorite garden bench. In the shade, in the sun, with a view, or obscured from it, a bench in the garden is one of life’s finer things.
Simply because the sun is shining, we picked out a few of our favorites — in varying styles, with top notch craftsmanship and unique design throughout. Click through to see more photos or read the maker’s notes on design, material selection and fabrication techniques.
Traditional / English Garden Right off the bat, we choose a very popular bench from Charles Shackleton in the English garden tradition. Commissioned by the Chicago Botanical Garden to create a distinctive, comfortable and durable bench, Charlie designed this one in teak with hand-turned details on the arm and lower cross-piece. Many of these are on display throughout acres of gardens and along walking paths. Of note: ShackletonThomas also makes a companion rocking chair worth coveting.
American / Arts & Crafts Plainfield maker David Boynton created the bench below for a California couple. Finding design inspiration in the Greene Brothers Cali craftsman vernacular, the bench would feel right at home in it’s west coast Arts & Crafts garden. Handcrafted from hearty White Oak with Ipe back splats, the piece is weather resistant and sealed with several layers of a favorite boat finish. Nice trick! Read more…
Studio / Metal and Wood We also love Dan Mosheim’s Bridges bench, a design partly inspired by his grandfather, Irvin Seeders, a bridge riveter for Bethlehem Steel for 52 years. A collaborative effort by the craftsman and his two sons, capitalizing on the particular specialties of each. Sam did the steel work and green paint, Will did the burning and finishing, and Dan roughed out the recycled oak wood, worked on assembly and the conceptual stuff. A unique piece with a measurable WOW factor. Reclaimed oak and steel.
Below Bridges, a shot of Tim Clark’s cherry and steel bench, one of three he created for the Shelburne Museum’s Pizzagalli Center. 100% locally sourced from start to finish, the stainless steel supports for the back of the benches were a nice tie in to the modern building which uses some identical visible stainless fasteners. Read more…
Freestyle / Organic Throughout David Hurwitz’ portfolio, you’ll find furniture that conjures the idea of a living landscape; pieces connected through design and material selection to the trees they came from. His garden bench (below) is crafted from locally-sourced White Oak. Leg forms are four sturdy stacked and laminated layers, hand carved to achieve an organic feel. Heavy duty stainless levelers under each of the legs allow the bench to sit flat on every surface. The entire piece finished with an eco-friendly, non-toxic natural oil made for outdoor use.
So do we have you looking right through spring, with summer in your sights? Imagining your spot to be, and breathe, and dream?
Choose Handmade at vermontfurnituremakers.com.