Interview - Janie Morris image

January 7, 2021

Members Interviews

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I love working with Scottish hardwoods, they have so much unique character and I love that it’s a local sustainable product.

How would you describe the style of your work?

Functional beauty, with an Art Deco inspired lean


What are your favourite materials to work with and why?

I love working with Scottish hardwoods, they have so much unique character and I love that it’s a local sustainable product.  


What are the benefits for you of being a member of the SFMA?

It’s a great way to showcase my work, both through the website and by taking part in Exhibitions; collectively we can exhibit much more impactfully than alone, so it’s a great thing to be able to pull together the membership to create some exciting shows.  


What would you say are the challenges facing craftspeople today?

The economy is always something we as craftspeople need to have an eye on; it affects everything we do as small businesses.  Another challenge I’m passionate about is sustainability; keeping my environmental impact as low as possible.


Why did you decide to become a furniture maker and what have you learned along the way?

I retrained after working as a stage manager in theatre for a decade; it’s my penance for painting so many gorgeous pieces of furniture black in my old life!  I wanted a way to work creatively while still utilising my practical and management skills.  I’ve learned that there’s always something new to learn, and that running a small furniture business is a constant battle between making and admin!


What are your sources of inspiration?

Always inspired by nature; sometimes a piece of timber speaks and it’s very clear what it needs to be!  I’m also inspired by architectural designs 


What’s your starting point in the design process?

My starting point is always function.  As much as I want my pieces to be appealing; to me great design starts with how it works.  


What piece of work are you most proud of?

My ‘Mavis” cabinet.  She was the first piece of furniture I ever made, and was an (almost never ending) absolute labour of love


What is the one item in your workshop that you couldn’t live without?

My coffee machine!


Is there a particular technique you enjoy using in your work?

I love selecting timber sensitively to create patterns and ‘seem less’ panels, and am very fond of inlaying as a discrete decoration


Is there a piece you’ve always wanted to make but haven’t got around to yet?

I have big plans for moving my kitchen at home from a smaller back room to creating a larger kitchen dining area but haven’t yet carved out the time to make it happen, maybe 2021!


When you’re not making furniture, how do you like to spend your time? 

Walking on the beach with my dog, Roxy, cooking and I’m quite partial to a quiz night in the pub



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