Otoko at DIFFA SF 2016

When approached with the opportunity to submit a design object for this year’s DIFFA (Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS) fundraiser, we thought it would be the perfect occasion for creating a new set of Otoko candleholders. With the theme of “Shine” to inspire, we created a new version of the Otoko Hero finished in mirror polished chrome. And, “shine” they do!

shine and texture

Cast pewter discs provide a contrast of texture and color to the smoothly polished nickel.  Why pewter?  Branden spent a good bit of his childhood at antique flea markets perusing pewter candlestick collections.  Pewter was a common metal alloy used to make candlesticks in early America.  So, pewter brings a bit of nostalgia to this otherwise very modern candle holder.

pewter-ingotpewter ingot

   pewter-pot_horiz melting pewter for casting

discs cast from a wax moldtextured-wax-pewter_horiz

petwter-disc_patina finished patinated pewter disc

The finished Otoko Hero are part of DIFFA’s silent auction taking place on October 12th.   Place a bid for a chance to get the first set made.  Call or send us a message to order a set of our other Otoko series:  Hero-Matte, Hero–Dark Polish, Oso, Ono and Minor.

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Dogtown Gets a New Look

Refectory layout
Laying out the wood for the Refectory Table

Our Dogtown neighborhood of West Oakland is changing its look with the addition of pop-up arts venues like Peralta Junction (only open for two more weekends–go check it out!) and Kinetic Steam Works Roll Out (happened last weekend). On cue with the neighborhood, BaDesign recently gave the Dogtown Farm Table an upgrade prompted by a commission from Bio-Logical Capital.  Bio-Logical Capial is a “land investment, development and conservation company” that recently opened a new office in San Francisco.  We designed and made conference tables for the two meeting rooms in their new location downtown.  The criteria for the first table included the use of reclaimed wood, a length of 19′ and a design that complimented the character of the space.  Limited access to the second floor conference room prompted a variation of the Dogtown Farm Table (it can be disassembled for transport). But this iteration of the Dogtown had to be more refined to accommodate men in suits, women in fine woolen garments and modern office chairs. As a result, we selected only vertical grain tongue and groove reclaimed timbers and gave the top a charred and oiled finish for a sleek look that retains the character of the re-purposed wood. The original saw-horse style base was swapped for two asymmetrical steel piers constructed of interlocking plates . The result is the Refectory–perfect for a holiday feast with friends and family if office parties are not your thing (for reference, a 19′ long table can seat 14-18 people).   Contact us for orders and custom options.

Details on the second table are yet to come.  

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PALLETform – the video

So what’s PALLETform?  We’ll unfold the story behind PALLETform in the next few blog posts, but for now watch this video.

Credits to photographer Steven Poe, our Dogtown neighbor.

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Farm Table for Sale

This past spring, we made a 17′ long farm table and 4 accompanying benches for the SF Garden Show’s Modern Homestead exhibit. The table and benches are now for sale. (Photo below courtesy of Studio Choo.)

dogtown farm table and benches
The steel sawhorse-style bases of the Dogtown Farm Table and Benches are a nod to the multi-use aspect of the neighborhood we live and work in.  Our office and fabrication shop are located in the Dogtown neighborhood of West Oakland – historically a mix of industrial businesses and residences.  Until a few years ago, the building that houses our office had the name Atelier Chienville (Dogtown Studios) stenciled on the facade.  And, the Dogtown Neighborhood Association annually hosts a Dog Show.  As if that weren’t reason enough for the Dogtown name, the wood for the table came from Dogtown Mill in western Marin.  Robert from Dogtown Mill salvaged this wood from the roof of Northgate Mall in San Rafael, CA when the mall was remodeled in 2009.  We chose this wood for table for it’s thickness (2-5/8″),  rich patina and tongue and grove profile.

We took great care to de-nail and clean the wood  in a way that would retain and enhance its natural patina.  Reclaimed wood comes with irregularities.  Some are desireable and some are not.  To accomodate some of the irregularities in the timbers and to add visual interest, we laid out a patchwork pattern to attain the desired 17+ foot length.  As always,  proportion, color and texture were all considered in the layout of the wood to achieve a balanced composition.

Additional photos of the Dogtown Farm Table and Benches can be seen on our website.  Because of the wood species, this table would be best situated in an indoor setting, e.g. a winery, barn or very commodious dining room.  Please contact us if you or someone you know might be interested in purchasing the Dogtown Farm Table and Benches.  Woof!!!

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The Aardvark in the Room

Aardvark TableUnlike the elephant in the room, the Aardvark is something we do want to talk about. Kat Nouri, owner of Modern-Twist, recently commissioned us to design a dining/conference table for her new Emeryville office. Here’s what happened…

We had been spending a lot of time prototyping and refining our Snick coffee tables. We had also been working on new designs for our PALLETproduct line. Like a late night lab experiment, chromosomes from the two were combined and a new breed of dining table was born. The base is inspired by Snick in its construction and the top is a variation of PALLETform using maple wood from shipping pallets. The silhouette’s likeness to one of the most intriguing ant-eating creatures on the planet is what inspired us to name it Aardvark. We’re happy enough with this beast that we are willing to clone it.

Contact us at info@bafdf.com for information on pricing or to order an Aardvark for your room!


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How Many Ways Can You Use a Shaker Stool?

One piece of furniture but so many uses! At the SF Flower & Garden Show in March, we witnessed many interesting alternative uses for the Shaker Stool such as in the above photo (photo provided by J. Hess).  Since we have children similar in size to the boy in the photo, we were quite pleased to see that we could haul our kids around in a stool.  Simply flip and voila,  an instant carrying case.  For poolside views of the Shaker Stools, click here.

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