Brooklyn Built Furniture From Sandy’s Scraps

Hurricane Sandy destroyed hundreds of homes, offices, and schools. It also hit the creative community hard, damaging dozens of artists’ studios and tons of work along the waterfront in Red Hook and Greenpoint. Now, creatives are leading a charge to turn their talents towards the relief efforts.

Francois Chambard, furniture designer behind UM Project, used storm-ravaged refuse from around Red Hook to create a collection of lamps whose proceeds will benefit Sandy Relief efforts.

Local artists and designers are invited by Reclaim NYC to create furniture using material reclaimed from storm cleanup sites, then the work will be auctioned off to benefit Sandy relief efforts. “We hope our fallen trees and storm-damaged building materials can be reborn as objects that represent the city’s recovery,” write the group’s founders. On December 19, Reclaim NYC will host its first auction, with work made by 24 artists and designers.

What a timely model of sustainability and contribution. The story says a lot about the about the New York Design Community.


Reading Between The Lines


More on the “Spirit” of materials- pieces like these celebrate the Natural Beauty of wood & the individual tree’s story. Cross-sections of trees reveal many secrets about their life and ecosystem, such as:

Age by the number of rings
Directional orientation
The predominant direction of the wind
Annual climate fluctuation
Health of the ecosystem
Tramas & healing
& the Will to Live!
Bringing Wisdom & Natural Beauty to your home or any space, this particular piece reveals 3 Hearts!

Do you know what other things are revealed by wood?

World Maker Faire in New York

Maker Faire is an event created by Make magazine to “celebrate arts, crafts, engineering, science projects and the Do-It-Yourself (DIY) mindset”.

Explore the two-day, family-friendly festival of invention, creativity, and resourcefulness this weekend. Take the 7 to 111th Street the and walk 3 blocks south to the New York Hall of Science in Flushing Meadows Corona Park.

For ticket info click here.

Let’s Rock: Health Benefits of Rocking Chairs

Relaxation, maturity, nostalgia, parenting… are some things that may come to mind when you see rocking chairs. On top of being fun & looking nice, rocking chairs possess a number of proven therapeutic benefits that make them far more than just a chair.

Here are a few insights into the health benefits:

1) Non-weight Bearing Exercise. Motion can help those with sedentary lifestyles to achieve muscle tone. Energy is exerted by the shifting body-weight back & forth, slowing respiration and lowering blood pressure. You can rock away depression, stress, & lose some weight all at once. (An average 150lb person burns 68 calories/hour sitting still and 150 calories/hour rocking in a chair.)

2) Rocking Helps Students with ADD & ADHD Focus Better in learning environments. According the Rocking Chair Therapy Research, the motion of rocking can satisfy the needs of kinesthetic learners by allowing them to stay alert and process information.

3) Pregnancy. Rocking a couple of minutes during pregnancy helps in the development of the nervous system of the fetus. Back pain and varicose veins can be prevented during pregnancy by rocking for a few minutes every day.

4) Social, Emotional, & Motor Development. Rocking in chairs & cradles help calm babies by simulating the experience of being cradled in the womb. The design of a rocking chair may provide armrests high enough to make breastfeeding or bottle feeding easy & comfortable. The rocking chair is a place where strong mother-child or father-child attachment is fostered.

5) For the Elderly. Reducing stress & anxiety, studies show those who rock regularly need less or no medication to deal with depression related issues. Rocking improves balancing skills, preventing accidents due to falling. Also, easy form of exercise for those who are inactive.

6) Post Surgery Recovery. Rocking has been found to help patients recover after an operation. After most surgeries, patients suffer from bowel dysfunction, in hospitals rocking has been known to help patients resume bowel activity sooner. Rocking helps reduce pain after an abdominal hysterectomy. In addition, it also helps patients to recover from a knee surgery with light exercise.

7) Arthritis. Rocking for about an hour everyday speeds recovery in patients, by improving the flexibility of the knees & strengthening muscles around the knees.

8) Alzheimer’s Disease & Dementia. Rocking is known to release endorphins, which help reduce anxiety. It is particularly helpful in mid-stage dementia patients, as they are very difficult to calm; rocking helps reduce their pain and soothes them. These diseases that are found in the elderly can be very arduous; rocking helps improve the overall health and well-being of such patients.


With these benefits, rocking chairs should be available in every home, hospital, & school. They are even becoming available in several airports throughout the country- from Boston to Sacramento.

For more info on the benefits of rocking chairs, check out the links below.
Let’s Rock!

Information for this post were sourced from these links.


Did you look?

What is it about form that attracts your attention? Just from a glance. Is it the material, structure, scale, or the gesture?

Now what is it that catches your eye and holds your attention- provoking memories, feelings, thoughts…? Beyond performing primary functions, can a piece of furniture propel you into a new state of mind the way art would?

If you’re on the hunt for furnishings with unique spirit or bold presence, here are a few select works from the FNY Community that can sustain anyone’s attention and are sure to be conversational pieces:

Tribeca Single Bulb Pendant, by Michael Mchale Designs

Zig Zag Redux, by Peter Harrison

VJBG Custom Locker, by Boca Grande Furnishings

Glass Hall Table, by Nico Yektai

Snaka Wakas, by Tucker Robbins

Corner Piece, by Nico Yektai

Doors To My Past, by Nico Yektai

Cloisonne Autumn Scene Folding Screen, by Chandeysson
Explore more.