It’s the time of the week when we sit down with an industry expert to shine a light on their work and share it with our community. We had the honor of getting to know Scott Himmel of Truex American Furniture LLC. Scott not only started a furniture line once but twice, and has had continued success with work inspired by tradition and the rediscovery of a mid-century modern touch.
What makes Truex unique?
Truex American Furniture has developed a 70 piece line where the one constant was that each piece was inspired by a design by an individual designer for a unique client. We adhere to absolute fidelity to the intent of each design, while often improving its comfort or durability. We engage the talents of nine artisan workrooms throughout the Midwest in the fields of millwork, upholstery fine metalwork and glass and mirror to complete our pieces.
What are your biggest sources of inspiration?
I would spend countless hours devouring the history of mid-century design. In 1980, in partnership with a former classmate, I founded a firm, concentrating on commercial architectural interiors. My partner took the lead as architect. My role was as the interior designer. That was where both our passions lay. I was very influenced by the work of a very young French designer, Jacques Grange. Through my study of his work I learned all about his two great touchstones, Jean Michel Frank and Madeleine Castaing. Their work and careers became my next focus.
What is your favorite part about designing furniture?
My favorite part about designing furniture is that moment, when you have studied all you can from whatever inspiration or memory you are using, and have a blank sheet of paper and a pencil in your hand and you begin the process of figuring out the entire concept of any piece, from overall size to proportion, to methods of construction and finishing. It’s that moment right before you start to draw.
Can you walk me through the customization process?
We have handled different sizing and scales of furniture for designers, adjustments for the comfort of a particular individual. a special finish. the dropping of one arm...all the way to designing or reproducing designs for 250 pieces of furniture, unrelated to our line for a luxury restaurant. There we worked with the designer, who provided us with photos, and we took it from there. We made drawings at full size, made prototypes for the client to sit in and approve and then manufactured the pieces.
A little extra fun fact about yourself
I have many interests both within and outside of the world of design. When I am focused in on any one of those interests which are as diverse as: catering professionally for charity, playing jazz piano, ballroom and jazz dancing, fine wine and cigars, and books on 20th century history, I become oblivious to the outside world until someone in my family knocks me in the head and says "come out of it"!
See more of Scotts original work on DesignerInc.com