Ones to Watch: Willow and Stump
Furniture designers Willow and Stump craft pieces with West Coast heart.
Living small. It’s a concept that many Vancouverites have come to embrace, including Kalyca Ryan and Bram Sawatzky, the creative minds behind wood-based furniture design company Willow and Stump. After graduating from the University of Alberta’s industrial design program in 2011, the duo decided to make the move to B.C., where they now create multi-functional furniture pieces designed for both small spaces and a locally focused lifestyle.
It’s these very principles that led Ryan and Sawatzky’s Ballast nightstand—a modular interpretation of a bedside table that can be adjusted according to a bed’s height—to win the People’s Choice award at last year’s Prototype design competition at IDSwest. “The objects we create not only need to function in small spaces,” says Sawatzky, “but we also want them to look good there, too.”
The pair’s designs are at once clean and innovative, from playfully curved chairs and cut-out tables to branch-like wall lamps and streamlined growler transporters. “We love craft beer, so that was a bit of a selfish project,” laughs Ryan as she recalls the origins of the Cutlass carriers. The result, however, was a paragon of West Coast-inspired design: stylish, environmentally friendly and extremely practical.