Tom Fereday develops products based on the principle of honest design, conveying a design process which celebrate the materials and manufacture behind furniture and products.
In the studio we use an approach called “honest design”, and that really has been a way to guide and direct the projects that we do. As a principle, this really comes down to mean that there is nothing to hide. From a design aspect, no matter what angle you look, if you look from the underside or back of a chair, it’s all been made and designed to be as elegant as possible. It also comes down to our principle of how and where our products are made. We can tell you exactly where our pieces are made, and that we’ve made it with as much integrity as we can.
There is a strong belief that we want to have a unique design, and we want the materials to really go back and connect with people. So the major focus is on natural timbers and stone, things that people want to touch and know will last.
If we work with natural timber and stone, they have a inherent beauty that you don’t have to overwork. It’s an obvious choice to celebrate the unique qualities of the material rather than hide them away.
The World of Makers
The approach that just happened organically was to collaborate with some of the best makers and producers in their different fields. The benefit of that is instead of us coming up with a design and having someone make it, we approach it like a collaboration. So we actually learn from someone who has spent 30 years crafting in a specific material. Ultimately, we get a better result than we would working as individuals.
Lane Crawford Collaboration
Winning the Lane Crawford Creative Callout meant that we got to go on a research trip to China and Hong Kong. Really it was an opportunity to learn more about the local market and understand what the design scene is in the region. It was fascinating and I came away with a lot better understanding of how the design industry works there.
From Lane Crawford there is a support network there that is looking after myself and my business hopefully in a long term way.
The first outcome was an entire furniture collection exclusively for Lane Crawford which we produced entirely locally and that collection has continued to grow.