Unique office furniture

Monday, February 27th 2006, 10:28 am
By: News On 6

In the age of mass production, when it's possible to turn out infinite numbers of items exactly alike, it's nice to see something that is truely unique.

Hand crafted furniture is not that unusual, but as News on 6 reporter Rick Wells explains, a Tulsa doctor's office furniture is like nothing you have ever seen.

Dr Frank Letcher is closing up his medical practice at Hillcrest Medical Center, and invited us in to take a look at his office furniture. "It is absolutely one of a kind." it is solid wood, elm from Scotland, more than that it is cut from the burl of an elm tree. "These trees are enormous they are at least 100 to 200 years old."

A burl is a growth on the tree like a tumor, over time they can grow to enormous size as well. "The key component is the fact that the edge of the furniture follows the edge of the tree itself, when it is cut across it reveals this marvelous grain we call burl."

The craftsman who made ithe found at a festival in Scotland. The beauty he had extracted from these grotesque shapes was almost magical according to Dr Letcher. "Oh, my goodness here is a man who has a sense of the spirit of the wood."

They worked on designs and corresponded back and forth and in something over a year.

Dr Letcher has office furniture unlike anything anywhere else, in fact he tried to have it appaised recently and couldn't. "I was told it couldn't be appraised because of its uniqueness." He says much of modern day woodworking is removing imperfections from the wood, this is different. "I can put my hand on here and feel the years and years and years of growth." And the imperfections in itare not hidden but celebrated.

Most of the pieces are too big to get through the door. Dr Letcher says he'll hire a cabinet maker to come in and disassemble it before it is moved.