Our newest table base, the Pascal, is a unique blend of Surrealist art and streamlined design. With its unexpected and irregular shape, this artful base catches and holds the eye with its varying depths of dimensional interest. So when we asked Stone Yard's head designer, Mitch Brean, about the backstory of this abstract art-turned-furniture piece, he had a few interesting tidbits to share.
"This year is very exciting because not only are we unveiling new table base designs inspired by modern art, but we are also showcasing some of our sister brands, whose products and services perfectly complement the Stone Yard brand. This allows us to provide one central, trusted design resource for the hospitality design community," says Stone Yard's Mitch Brean.
"When I travel, it's all about the adventure," head designer at Stone Yard, Mitch Brean, begins our conversation. "So I plan things as little as possible and let things happen."
In his most recent trip to Africa, which included visits to seven different African countries, Mitch did find adventure—and inspiration—at every turn. Explore with him in this blog post, as he relives some of his favorite moments through stories and images.
The word "bespoke" originated in the fashion industry, and literally means to speak for something, as a well-cut suit or dress is said to "speak well" of the wearer. In furniture design, using bespoke, or custom, pieces in a design speaks to a high sense of style. But it does more than that: it simplifies and streamlines the design process. Put simply, unlike off-the-shelf furniture that forces you to tailor your design to the piece, bespoke furniture is tailored to your design.
Like flour dusting a bakery floor, a fine layer of plaster dust overlays nearly every surface of the otherwise clean Stone Yard studio. An assortment of metal tools lay on a table; they are 30-year old Italian sculpting tools and they belong to Stone Yard's master sculptor. A black-and-white photo is taped to the wall; it shows what looks like a layer of sand dunes in profile, shadows casting a gradient of color and texture. "Mitch brought me this photo of a rock formation and asked me to sculpt it," our sculptor says, when asked about it. "A few days ago, he brought me another photo and I said, 'Is this papier-mâché?' But when he turned it around, it was the same photo of the rock! It's amazing how something can take on a totally different texture depending on perspective."
Nothing lights the creative fire like working with other artists on projects you both love. And Stone Yard's founder and head designer Mitch Brean cherishes the collaborative relationships he's fostered over the years with designers and trade professionals. For nearly three decades, Mitch and the Stone Yard team have been privileged to work with San Diego interior designer, Barbara Grigsby, on countless custom projects. In the following Q&A session, Barbara discusses what brings her joy as a designer, and why she loves coming to Stone Yard with her craziest ideas.
Looking to incorporate natural elements into your design? At Stone Yard, our handcrafted furnishings include many nature-inspired pieces designed to add organic beauty, textural interest, and artful variety to luxury landscapes. As a reflection of biophilic design, a design style that uses natural elements to connect humans with nature, our artisans and designers take queues from the natural landscape, crafting one-of-a-kind pieces that exert a soothing, grounding influence on a space.
With the warmer weather rolling in, the topic among designers and homeowners naturally turns towards outdoor spaces. Whether it's a home, restaurant, hotel, or other venue, the intent remains the same: to create a stylish, comfortable place to gather and entertain. Our outdoor seating line, which includes sofas, chairs, benches, and fully custom pieces, are both artful in design and sturdy in all climates. These furniture-turned-statement pieces give people a place to relax, reminisce, or revel—or all three.
“We are excited to showcase some of our latest designs at our booth, including artisanal fire tables and bowls, contemporary new planter shapes, mosaic marble table tops, and an exclusive fountain design,” says Mitch Brean, Stone Yard's founder and lead designer. “We will also be displaying high-end faux plants from our sister brand, EcoVara, including a fabricated tree trunk with a tap that dispenses cold refreshments for our guests.”
At Stone Yard, we believe that good luxury design is livable—and that furnishings should be not only aesthetically pleasing but welcoming. Nowhere is this more important than in hospitality design, which seeks to create a fantasy getaway atmosphere for guests, but with all of the comforts of home. Here is a list of hotels and resorts that inspire us by achieving this delicate design balance.