When Tom Faulkner discovered steel in the early 90s, he was captivated by what it offered in terms of design and manufacturing possibilities. “It is a fantastic material,” states Tom. “You can bend it, roll it, weld it, cut it – it is so versatile. I was inspired by the craftsmen I met when I first started to design in metal – I really wanted to encourage and use their skills.”
Tom went on to start the business from scratch in 1995, and since then it has grown slowly and organically. The company focuses primarily on metalwork and produces dining tables and chairs, mirrors, lights and accessories – with many different options on finishes and all made to order – combined with either glass, wood, stone or marble.
“It’s my belief that simplicity of line and proportions are the cornerstones of all good design, so I try to apply this principle to everything we make. The distinctiveness, elegance, straightforwardness and unusual appeal of our furniture sets us apart from the crowd. What’s more, the variety of styles we offer attracts all ages, and our clients all share the same interest in craftsmanship and quality and have a keen interest in home interiors,” Tom explains.
Tom Faulkner also creates completely bespoke one-off pieces for its customers from its workshop in Wiltshire, where all the furniture is made. Importantly, having a workshop in the UK affords the business with higher levels of control over production. The company can prototype easily and be light on its feet if things change, which is especially useful considering that the bespoke and tailor-made service aspect is such an integral part of what it offers to its clients.
“It’s so important to stay aware of customers’ needs and preferences, but also ever-changing trends – without being completely governed by them. Coloured marble is very popular at the moment, and the warmth and glamour of gold combined with marble is definitely a current trend.
“Nature’s colour combinations are unbelievably beautiful – pink and purple and gold running through creamy stone means marble doesn’t have to look cold, especially when combined with a golden or bronze finish,” says Tom.
After reaching its 20th anniversary milestone and completing a major renovation of its London showroom, this year has certainly been a busy one so far for Tom Faulkner. As well as having exhibited at Maison et Objet for the first time in January, the company will also exhibit at the International Contemporary Furniture Fair in New York this month. The business is also keen to keep up the momentum with many new products and projects in the pipeline for the near future.
“Our aim is to keep adding exciting new designs to our existing collections and offering more variety of both classic and contemporary pieces, meticuously produced and finished by our skilled team. New dining tables and chairs, plus some distinctive ideas for mirrors, lights, storage, are all on the agenda. We are also about to launch an accessories range including more table lamps, candlesticks, vases and throws,” Tom states.
“On top of this, we are about to go live with a new website, having invested in some great new photography, which is vital as more and more people look online for inspiration for their interiors. Hopefully this will help progress our long-term goal of expanding our global footprint and customer base in the US and Europe, where we are already having some success.”