Made in RVA: Old wood finds new life at local custom furniture shop

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — With a spin of the blade, something old becomes something new.

This is what takes place at a custom furniture fabrication shop on Mayo Island in Richmond.

Iron Oaks makes new and upscale furniture made from downed trees and old wood only from Virginia.

Owner Karl Harkness says when they remove the trees, instead of chipping them, they cut them into slabs.

Harkness shows Anchor Morgan Dean the reclaimed and recycled wood that he will turn into high-end furniture and fixtures, such as coffee and end tables.

From design to production, to delivering the final product, Iron Oak does custom, one-of-a-kind pieces.

“That’s what we pride ourselves on, every single piece, we put our heart into,” Harkness said.

You may have seen the company’s work and not even realized it. Iron Oak made the display shelves and check out desk for Jackson and James men’s clothing store in Scott’s Addition and the picnic tables at Gelati Celeste on the Boulevard.

Iron Oak is now making custom stools for the soon-to-open Vasen Brewery in Richmond.

They are a true fusion of metal and wood.

Of some of the reclaimed and repurposed wood they have at Iron Oak, there’s a table in the lobby where samples are available.

If you look closely at the table, you’ll realize it used to be a lane in an old bowling alley near Lynchburg that’s no longer there.

It’s not been finished yet, but at some point down the road, this will be someone’s new conference table.

Now that the high-end furniture business has really taken root, Harkness is already thinking about the future and creating a furniture line.

“We want to have a product line, an end or coffee table, that’s in the right price range, that an average person can buy it,” Harkness said.

Read more about Iron Oak here. 

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