Nominations for the Pinnacle Awards were announced last week. The Pinnacle Award is a coveted honor bestowed by the ISFD, the International Society of Furniture Designers, the organization devoted to advancing, improving and supporting the practice of furniture design. Now in its 23rd year, the Awards which takes place during High Point Market, cover 18 categories. There is one devoted to student designs and the newest category is Maker/Designer which recognizes those who create one-of-a-kind pieces and custom client designs. The judges are industry leaders; they are retailers, manufacturers, educators, trend forecasters, and journalists. I am proud to say that Designers Today and Furniture Today are among the sponsors.

I reached out to a few furniture designers to find out about their nominated pieces.


Dudley Moore of Otto & Moore, along with team members Laura Niece and Lenny Chapman, are nominated for Linea, a design collaboration with Bernhardt. The collection features materials such textured cast aluminum, brushed oak veneers, custom designed hardware, and stratified Black Forest marble. Linea is nominated under the Major Collection category and the Linea Entertainment COnsole is up for Occasional Storage.

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Every collection we design for Bernhardt is an adventure...

and that’s what my team  loves about collaborating with them. For Linea, the Bernhardt team, led by Alex Bernhardt, charged us with taking traditional furniture forms and architectural elements, cleaning them up, and reimagining them in a rustic modern interpretation. The design process is an interesting trip, and we love the way this turned out.


The original design intent was to utilize color and a veneer pattern on a case that was both relatable and elegant in form. "I had three initial concepts in Blue, Charcoal and Red," says Aimee Kurzner, Director of Furniture at Currey & Co. "We started with the blue. The original pattern was a concentric geometric pattern." Once at the factory, however, the color wasn't quite right and the pattern wasn’t behaving as planned with the veneer species. Kurzner had to switch it up. The Kallista Cabinet is nominated for Occasional Storage.



While at the factory, I sketched a new pattern and changed the veneer to figured sycamore,


and continued to adjust the color. Ultimately I had help with getting the exact color blue...a dark, elusive blue with a hint of purple that changes appearance depending on the light. 



The Mango Dining Table, designed by Jason Phillips of Phillips Collection, features a live edge top responsibly sourced from fallen trees.  The tapered, monolithic base is made from cold pressed steel finished in matte black. The Mango Table is nominated in the Casual Dining category.

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The Mango Dining Table is all about contrast.

We wanted to celebrate the light tones of the wood which required going bold on the base. Tapered, monolithic legs made from cold pressed steel finished in matte black add a bold contrast to the natural Jungle Mango top.



What makes the Maki Screen so special is its use of leftover material. Massive root systems of felled trees are analyzed, power washed with a decommissioned fire truck that Phillips Collection purchased specifically for this task, and cut on location into tables, studied to see the best way to cut the multi-ton root for maximum yield. Mark Phillips likens the process to a diamond in the rough.  The Maki Screen designed by Mark Phillips is nominated in the Accessories category as well as the Green Leaf Award.

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It's my passion to find the unique and unexpected from around the globe.

We dig up roots of felled trees that prevent farmers from cultivating their land, and pay them for the right to clean up their land. We cut the roots into tables, and leftover pieces become new product such as the Maki Screen. Framed in black metal housing, it is not only a room divider, but an objet d’art. 

Here are 16 more images of nominated home furnishings designs:

On a final note, there is a swivel chair contender named "Jane".  Though I was not the muse for the design concept, it still makes me happy to hear my name associated with this fine looking chair from Chaddock.

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The Twenty-Third Annual Pinnacle Awards Gala is on October 15 at High Point University’s Congdon School of Health Sciences. Cocktail Reception begins at 6. Awards ceremony at 7. Tickets for the gala are $75 in advance and $100 at the door. Tansportation is available departing from the front of Showplace starting at 5:30pm. Click here for more info.