Using wood that’s harvested within the Chicago metro area—due to the effects of nature such as age, wind or storm damage—chop chop not only reduces the demand on our nation’s forests, they’re fabricated locally thereby minimizing the carbon footprint between the source, mill and production.
Designer Paul Pettigrew, Studio Associate Professor at the Illinois Institute of Technology College of Architecture, pursued this project in response to a surplus of felled ash trees in our urban forests.
Collaborating with Horigan Urban Forest Products, each piece is stripped of its bark and squared into rectangular logs. Then they’re kiln-dried, sanded, oiled, and protective feet are added.
The natural variations in grain, dimension and color of trees that define the urban forest mean each table is unique. Kiln-dried to reduce moisture content, wood checks (ie. splits or cracks) may appear as the wood acclimates to its environment—expands and/or contracts—but they enhance each table’s special character without affecting its structural integrity.
Congratulations to Horigan Products’ co-founders Erika and Bruce Horigan, who’ve been recognized by the Illinois Arborist Association for advancing the cause of wood recycling and by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and the Illinois Waste Management and Research Center for significant achievements in protecting the environment.