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Beautiful Koa Wood: Furniture & Home Accents
Slide 1 Of Beautiful Koa Wood: Furniture & Home Accents
Hawaii is legendary for its beauty, and the koa tree is perhaps its most celebrated natural treasure. Steeped in folklore, this tree exists nowhere else in the world. Its reddish, fine-grained wood is used for both practical and decorative purposes.
Commonly used for decorative objects such as bowls, koa wood blends well with the bright colors of Hawaii's tropical flowers and design motifs. Here, designer Mary Phillpotts displays her collection of large koa bowls on and around a grand piano.
James Ferla is a Hawaiian master craftsman known for transforming the raw material of the koa tree into heirloom quality furniture, cabinetry, and architectural elements. Commissioned to restore some of Hawaii's structural landmarks and add an indigenous touch to new structures such as the Outrigger Waikiki hotel and resort, Ferla captures the appeal of the resource in every piece he makes.
Hawaiian artifacts on loan from museums and private collections greet visitors of the famed Outrigger Waikiki in a display case crafted by James Ferla. A dramatic feature of the lobby, the koa cabinet spans 20 feet.
The warriors of ancient Hawaii carved weapons and honed canoes from the strong hardwood, and as time passed, koa was also used for furniture and architectural elements, like the sleek front lobby desk of the Outrigger Waikiki.
James Ferla's long roster of commercial projects demonstrates how functional furniture can double as art. This table was designed with a compass theme to complement a painting titled "The Discovery of Oahu," which depicts the arrival of settlers to the island. Its top houses a Hawaiian Star Chart and Compass Rose.
Koa and maple woods team for a petite table with smart design. James Ferla wanted visual movement on the legs, so he carved them from Koa. A maple top provides enough hardness to make the piece durable and functional.
Martin & MacArthur is a retail venue on the islands known for both furniture and smaller accessories made from koa wood. Its inventory includes intricately carved desk clocks influenced by classic Hawaiian quilt patterns. The designs honor two of Hawaii's greatest decorative contributions--koa wood and quilts that depict Hawaii's flora.