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Artisan Spotlight :: West Elevations

September 14, 2017 Kiley Handy

This month we're excited to introduce you to West Elevations, a sustainable construction company based in our backyard - Golden, Colorado. While we are in awe of custom homes they've had a hand in constructing, it's their woodworking and furniture that we knew we had to share with all of you.  

West Elevations Artist Spotlight Header
Our furniture is designed and built in a solar powered shop in Golden.  Every piece of wood is either reclaimed from a renovation or is excess lumber from shop projects.  The design process is a collaboration of ideas with modern influence.  We hand select each piece of wood and let it speak to us to get the most unique look possible.
To get to know them a little better we picked the brain of owner Michael Ode. 
::
Tell us a little about your background? What brought you to carpentry? What inspires you?
My dad got me interested in carpentry at a young age.  I would help him with various projects around the house.  As I got older, he would give me more challenging tasks.  He is a big inspiration. Nature is my other important inspiration.
When you’re designing furniture, what is your process? What role does repurposing materials from a build play?
When designing a piece - it's usually a concept the evolves over time.  I let the reclaimed wood that I acquire help form the decisions.  Other times it's just modern design that floats in my subconscious and I'll try to create my own version of clean lines- letting functionality lead the way.  I also rely on Matt Jaeger and Evan Williams who work with me & help create the pieces.  Both fine carpenters.
What do you most enjoy creating? Any favorite pieces? Dream projects?
I just enjoy creating.  Nothing specific.  Just the sense of taking raw material and making some useful and/or beautiful.  Dream project would be to design and build every piece of furniture and all built ins for a custom home or newly renovated home.  Being a General Contractor as well - I see the entire process of a renovation from start to finish - through each phase.  I get to know the house and clients well and think it would be fantastic to incorporate my own pieces into the finished product.
And just for fun...do you collect anything?
I collect bird sculptures.  Usually while traveling , but also any that strike me when I'm out and about.  They are such an amazing animal.  Their songs, vibrant colors and plumage - let alone the fact that they can fly!
::
What is one tool you couldn’t live with out?
This may be cheating - but the tool I can't live without would be a pencil.  Thats where the design starts to become something real.  It goes from shapes, images and ideas swirling in my head to lines on paper.  That's a crucial step in the process.
:: Thank you, Michael for the glimpse into what makes West Elevations tick! ::
Want to learn more? Join us Sept 21st for an open house with West Elevations! See you there! 
Cheers,
Kiley & Ann
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