Whimsical furniture

As I wandered into a special exhibit on furniture at the Indiana State Museum, I was curious. “I wonder if I’ll be drawn to any of these items.” A few steps in, I was face-to-face with a whimsical piece. Flowing, curving lines. Bright colors. It was not your normal piece of furniture but screamed creativity. Someone was thinking outside of the norm. Creating furniture that was playful and well designed rather than just functional. It bespoke of an alternate dimension, of the world of Dr. Seuss.

Perhaps for all of those reasons I was drawn to the piece called Together We Can.

I stopped to read about the designer. Vincent Leman. Located in Valparaiso, my hometown. Nice. I scribbled down his name and moved on.

Back home, I stumbled across a video about his company, Dust Furniture. I saw creative piece after creative piece that he designed. I learned how he designed furniture to flow, mimicking nature. How he didn’t just design the pieces but produced them by hand. In the US. I watched in the video as he and his wife walked along the beach at Lake Michigan with a house in the background that I recognized from Beverly Shores.

Am I smitten by his furniture because he is a Hoosier, working in my hometown, handcrafting the pieces here in the US? That certainly deepens my smitten-ness but fundamentally, his design and creativity speaks to me like that of other great designers—Louis Comfort Tiffany and Frank Lloyd Wright—or works from the Arts and Crafts movement.

Perhaps his furniture will speak to you too.

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