Word to the Guise: Matt Alexander

   

   

I took a drive to Lascassas, TN this morning to visit Matt Alexander of HollerDesign and felt right at home in the cozy shop where all his gorgeous handmade furniture comes to life. Check out some of Matt’s work in Barista Parlor and the soon to be open Rolf & Daughters in Germantown among other specialized shops in town.

Like what you see? Head on over to his online store for even more pieces!

You’ve studied and worked in a wide variety of places – what sets the south apart for you in terms of furniture design?

The south has a rich history of craftsmen. Ladderback chairs were widely made in the Cumberland region of eastern Tennessee and southeastern Kentucky. Also consider the quilts of Gee’s Bend, the basketmakers of Woodbury, TN.  As a result, there is a plethora of inspirational fodder for HollerD to base work off of. Additionally, the rustic and rural textures of the south have a large role in the design of HD furniture and products.

Do you have any new projects you’re working on that you can fill us in on?

We are fortunate enough to have many fans but not all of them can afford a $3500 dining table. As a result, we are currently developing a few new home products with a price point between $50-$300. As always, the designs will be made locally from locally sourced materials and be inspired by life in the south.

What’s your favorite piece that you’ve built and designed?

I like both the Rocker and the Beam stool. Each one is simple and straightforward in its design and illustrates a pleasing mixture of new south and old south, a trait that I refer to as “country nouveau”.

What keeps you inspired?

Materials, making, tools, contemporary design, magazines, history, coffee….

What’s your ideal weekend in Tennessee and are there any hidden gems you’re willing to fill us in on?

I love and have always loved the Smokey Mountains. An ideal weekend would include a trip to the mountains. Before heading out I would need to make a slight detour to Barista Parlor in Nashville to pick up some cold brewed coffee and a sausage and biscuit from Porter Road Butcher. While in the Smokies, I’d probably try to make it to the Chimney Tops or Abrahm’s Falls, among others. On the way back, I’d probably grab a beer or two and a bite to eat in Knoxville. Perhaps Public House or Fort Sanders Yacht Club for the beer and Tomato Head for the bites.

Where do you hope to see your company in 10 years?

In 10 years I would like to expand HollerD to include a wider variety of Furniture and Home Products. The fabrication shop, design studio and employees would also have to expand and evolve along with the business. I hope to keep all design and fabrication in house while retaining the core of HD’s principles; locally inspired contemporary design with local materials and labor.


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