A favorite resource for custom products is Kindel Furniture Company. Their story is as interesting as their products. Started in St. Louis over 100 years ago, and still owned by part of the original founders, Kindel is considered one of the last great American furniture companies. Now located in Grand Rapids, Michigan, they have a distinct ability to adapt to market trends while staying true to their values of quality and craftsmanship. They are delightful, friendly people, and their showroom is always one of my highlights at the High Point furniture market.
Kindel holds the license agreement to reproduce items from the world famous Winterthur Museum, as well as the license agreement to reproduce items from our founding president’s home, Mount Vernon. Recently, they have become famous for their work at the Greenbrier Hotel assisting in the restoration of the public and guest rooms. In order to do justice to the restoration of the Greenbrier, they have begun reproducing many pieces designed by the great Dorothy Draper, who set the standard for design in what the Greenbrier is today. A classic American decorator, her work was fresh and innovative at the time, and it still is today.
Kindel sends me regular examples of items they are preparing for shipment. It is interesting to see what they are doing and how other designers manipulate their products to become one of a kind items.
The trellis writing table is a great example of how Kindel can manipulate a product and change its look. This table was originally done in mahogany, but the white laquer makes it look totally fresh.
The two drawer console and curio is a fabulous Dorothy Draper piece. This can be done in any of their multitude of finishes, but imagine how “traditional” it would look in mahogany, how contemporary it would look in black, how Asian it would look in red. This is a great versatile piece with endless possibilities.
The Custom Mark round tables are fun and playful. Definitely not a design one would initially think of Kindel as producing.
The Townsend Tea Table is a classic Kindel piece, and harkens back to their roots as reproducing 18th century American antiques.