Vocab Quiz

As with any creative industry, brand, or product, we have our own “design vocabulary.” A design vocabulary is not a list of words, or even a list of details, but rather the overall, overarching style of a group of products that brings them all together; makes them complement one another. Our design vocabulary is what makes a Huston piece recognizable as a Huston piece. It’s also what differentiates our designs from those of other furniture builders. It is what makes our designs OURS.

York Table by Huston and Company, handcrafted in Kennebunkport Maine

It is within our Signature Designs, that you will find our vocabulary defined. (Because we do so much custom work, we can’t say that every single piece of furniture we build fits within our design vocabulary. Sometimes we are asked to build pieces that are quite different; a real departure from our ‘usual’.) Before we add a new design to our catalog, we evaluate it to be sure it “fits”. It has to be a “Huston piece”; it has to look the part.

Davenport Tall Chest handcrafted by Huston and Company furniture builders

If you ask us, as many visitors to our showroom do, “What style is this?” we will often pause a bit and then give a rather vague answer. “Well, it’s sort of a mix between Shaker, Arts & Crafts, a lot of Danish influence and maybe some Eastern or Asian influences as well.” It’s not that we don’t know, or can’t decide. It’s just that it’s all of the above.
It’s Huston style. What else can we say?

Duo Headboard cherry and copper handbuilt by Huston and Company

So, a few defining elements:

  • Clean, crisp lines
  • Clear, smooth surfaces
  • Minimal ornamentation – maybe a small bit of inlay here, a little texturing there
  • Graceful presence – not too heavy, overpowering or overly dramatic
  • Timeless – works well with your modern or antique interior, will grow old with you and future generations
  • Clear finish – let the wood speak
Studio End Table an occasional table handcrafted by Huston and Company

As we move through this, our 25th year, we’ll create a few new designs. Be on the lookout. They may be extensions of a design we’ve already introduced, or they may be entirely new. In either case, they will be new Signature Designs and as such will be sure to pass our vocab quiz.