Skylar Morgan: Furniture Maker

ALL PHOTOS BY ANDY THOMAS LEE


Chabench, washed ash


King Table, walnut


Arciform Sideboard, walnut


Skylar Morgan’s furniture line blends more than just amazing wood grains – it successfully embraces conflicting design elements.

“My whole philosophy is minimalism that’s very warm. I can have that simple, pure design but with a great material (and) the shape lends itself to the material.”

The end products are sleek and classic, extolling the natural beauty found in wood grain.

“The main focus is making sure the wood is beautiful,” comments Morgan. “That it is sourced, cut and finished correctly.”

He hunts down the perfect piece of wood like a retriever searching for a ball in the ocean – he won’t stop until it’s found. Morgan spends entire days wandering through lumber yards. (His favorites include one in North Carolina known for a reddish oak and another in Pennsylvania for a deep blue walnut.) He searches for patterns, designs and coloring perfected by nature.

Y Glass Coffee Table and Y Glass Side Table, walnut


Spirit Steward, rosewood


“It’s all about the soil that the trees are growing in,” he notes. “I love the imperfections and character marks – no piece of wood is boring to me.”

Even if those special pieces sometimes spend years in his “candy pile” of favorites in his Atlanta factory, he knows they will ultimately become the highlight of a piece of furniture, lightly accented with glass, metal or leather to become the best piece possible.

“I use the fewest amount of parts to make the most impact,” he says. “It’s not what you can add, it’s what you can take away. I have so much functional sculpture in my head I had to build it to get it out of my head.”

The logistics of designing furniture may challenge the perfectionist artist in him, but Morgan has evolved through the process in the 15 years he’s been running his namesake company. “You can design a beautiful dining table, but it might shake or crack or wobble. I fine-tune what’s in my head and then bring it to the builders so it’s going to be better.”

With everything from designing to detailing occurring under one roof in his Atlanta factory, it’s easy to communicate throughout the entire process. Attention to detail is never lost as he and his fellow artisans create tables, chairs and sideboards.

“Most everything we do in our line is inspired by work on the custom side,” he continues. And because each piece is handcrafted, even his line pieces can be customized with leather and design options. Morgan credits his wife for assisting with successfully creating the company’s reputation for both custom pieces and the line.

“She’s taken it from me: having fun in a woodshop to listening to what clients are saying and designing pieces for what people want.”

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