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The best of the outdoors takes on a chic new life as designers turn materials like tree bark and reindeer hides into rustic decor
Portage place: With its tapering frame and hand-woven meshing, the Paddle bench by Montreal’s Samare takes its form from the bow seat of a canoe. The colours can be customized as can the meshing – it can be either be a traditional, rawhide babiche or a vegan-friendly, synthetic nylon. Price upon request. Through samarestudio.com.
Soft lighting: Toronto-based designers Alex Jowett and Michael Greenwood channelled the Sami people from Scandinavia for their White Heat pendant lamp: the frame is made of Baltic birch and the hide is an byproduct of the Sami’s main source of livelihood: reindeers. Because it’s assembled from all natural materials (save for the bulb), it was designed to eventually be disposed of with minimal impact on the environment. $967. Through Atelier688.com.
Drum circles: With her Salmon Drum tables, Vancouver-based Sabina Hill took a cast-off material – fish skins – and used them to create a luxurious piece of decor: The tanned hides have a rich, rough texture which contrasts well with the smooth, polished walnut of the table tops. Price upon request. Through sabinahill.com.
(John C Watson)
Cattle call: Best Made is a New York-based design firm run by a Canadian expat, Peter Buchanan-Smith. Because his Stay Sharp whisky tumblers are individually hand-hewn and polished from Ankole cattle horns, they each have their own unique grains, colours and shimmering streaks. $89 per pair. Through bestmadeco.com.
Knit picks: Kaufmann Mercantile’s house shoes are both striking and practical: the hand-knit uppers are made from water-repellant, ultra snuggly Patagonian sheep’s wool and the soles are made from salmon skins, which looks delicate but, when tanned, becomes durable enough to walk on. $59. Through kaufmann-mercantile.com.
Kindling chic: For his Accumulation cabinet, Korean designer Xerock Kim hand-collected all the tree bark from a forest near his studio. He used the rough wood to clad a polished, machine-made chest to highlight the difference between natural beauty and typical, industrial furniture. Price upon request. Through kimxerock.com.