Nice Legs

The focal point of any Elko Hardwoods furniture is undoubtedly the unique, live edge slab of salvaged American hardwood. But the right legs or base can complement that slab and highlight certain aspects of the wood.

Here are some of Elko's most common styles of legs and bases. We make all of our bases by hand with the highest quality steel, precise welds, and durable finishes. Since it's all done in-house, custom options are available for all pieces.

Hairpin

Pedestal

Square

Steel Plate (Bent & Square)

Trapezoid

Waterfall

Acrylic Slab

Standard Console

T Base

X Base

The story of an Elko table

Several years ago, an 80 year old maple in northern Indiana was removed from a yard due to storm damage. Matt, our sawyer and artisan, cut the tree into slabs and it eventually became a beautiful 10' long dining room table. The ebonized maple tabletop has resin filled cracks, modern live edge design, and a silky smooth finish.

Check out a few pictures from its journey.

To learn more about what goes into Elko's live edge furniture, be sure to read about our "tree-to-table" process.

Live Edge Cutting Boards Now Available From Elko Hardwoods

We’re now offering live edge cutting boards and serving trays at our showroom! Available in different sizes and wood types, each as unique as our furniture.

Included is a tin of our food safe oil/beeswax finish, which when applied periodically will keep your board as good as new.

Our Process

Butterfly Joints - a live edge design legacy

Have you ever wondered about the bowtie-shaped joints used in many of our pieces?

Butterfly joint detail on a maple coffee table

Butterfly joint detail on a maple coffee table

We tend to refer to them as butterfly joints, but you may also hear them referred to as dovetail keys, bow-ties, or Dutchman keys. Butterfly joints can be seen anciently in boats, furniture, and housing structures, but they made a design resurgence in the mid-20th century when used by George Nakashima, an esteemed furniture designer, and one of our lead inspirations.

Not only are these accents a simple design element, they’re also structurally significant for many of our live edge designs. 

Butterfly joint detail from an ebonized maple coffee table

Butterfly joint detail from an ebonized maple coffee table

The advantage of working with locally salvaged slabs is that each piece is one of a kind with unique grain patterns, cracks, splits, and beautiful disfigurements. Each slab carries the story of the tree it once belonged to. The challenge of working with such pieces, however, is that a crack, split, or knot may threaten the long life that we hope to provide each of our creations. By utilizing butterfly joints expertly, we can stabilize a crack or provide reinforcement when joining multiple slabs.

A snapshot of our design process on a live edge cherry slab

The same cherry slab as a finished coffee table

A pair of expertly-fitted butterflies as seen on a walnut bench

A vital part of creating structurally sound furniture is the drying process. After salvaging a tree and sawing it into slabs, we air dry each slab for 2-3 years and then kiln-dry it for nearly a month. This process illuminates how much cracking and splitting will occur over time in each slab, offering plenty of warning about where the most structurally vulnerable spots lie. With this information we determine where to employ a butterfly joint, and get to work. 

What our lead artist/designer Matt says about crafting these intricate details: "Adding butterfly joints is a challenging and exciting part of my process. I like that it's an age old design and the perfect example of the beauty in form meeting function. I'm especially drawn to the shape because it's so simple yet structurally sound."

A single butterfly joint: a simple design statement, and a pop of contrasting color

A single butterfly joint: a simple design statement, and a pop of contrasting color

In short, our tables don’t just wear bowties because they’re dapper, they’re carefully-considered and indispensable structural support.

Galleries

Elko Hardwoods' First 2nd Friday of 2017

Pilsen: the place to be on the 2nd Friday of the month

For those of you who aren’t yet in-the-know, the Pilsen neighborhood is the place to be in Chicago for every 2nd Friday of the month. Our new showroom is open to the public for a few extra hours on these evenings with great furniture, music, refreshments, and conversation.

The Chicago Arts District is an organization that supports the numerous artists and galleries of East Pilsen in their creative and entrepreneurial ventures.

The most notable way that you can experience the support of the arts in Pilsen is through 2nd Fridays, a long-running self-led gallery walk organized by CAD. The event is free to the public, and runs from 6-10p every second Friday of every month, rain or shine (or freezing rain, as the case may be!). Here is a map of the 30+ current gallery offerings.

We are honored to call this corner of Chicago our new home, and had a ton of fun keeping our doors open a few hours later last Friday night to participate in the first monthly 2nd Fridays Art Walk of 2017. The tunes were groovy, the snacks and drinks enjoyed, and best of all, we had great time getting to know a diverse crowd of Chicagoans over our beautiful tables.

As usual, the 250-year-old Ash Table in our front window attracted the most attention, but the Cherry Desk and Walnut Table were close seconds! It’s often moving for people from the area to see the old, familiar trees they perhaps grew up around have a second life that’s so striking.

This family-friendly event is casual and vibrant, and the majority of the art in the area changes from month-to-month, making each 2nd Friday an easy addition to your calendar. We’re currently featuring our fine furniture as well as ceramics by Dubhe Carreño and Kate Tremel, and natural-dye-on-silk art by L. Crespo of Argaman&Defiance.

If you missed out on the good times this Friday, plan to join us for next 2nd Friday on February 10. Come ready to snack, sip, and explore in our gorgeous space. We’re located at 2003 S Halsted, an easy 10 minute drive from downtown with available street parking.

Shows, Galleries

What a month - OOAK Chicago and a new showroom!

One of a kind live edge furniture at the OOAK Show in Chicago

December was a monumental month for those of us at Elko Hardwoods. We kicked off by exhibiting several of our live edge pieces alongside 600 other artists and artisans at Chicago’s One of a Kind Show, held at the Merchandise Mart. Four days of non-stop activity and the stunning environment of The Mart and central Chicago left us on a high. The One of a Kind Show is truly a destination event for artists and art enthusiasts alike, and we loved being a part of it.

Our round live edge ash dining table - a crowd favorite!

The piece that undoubtedly stole the spotlight was the single-slice Ash Dining Table. This live edge table, salvaged from the largest ash tree in Elkhart County, is one of our personal favorites. With its visible and palpable tree rings and intentionally unfilled gaps and crevasses, this table proved irresistible to the eyes and touch of its many admirers. 

Elko Hardwoods' Chicago Showroom

While this was our second time participating in the One of a Kind Show, it was our first opportunity to introduce ourselves as a young Chicago-based company! Just weeks before the show, we received the keys to our gorgeous new showroom, located at 2003 S. Halsted Street in the Pilsen neighborhood of Chicago. Our little corner of Pilsen is nestled in a row of galleries, shops, showrooms, and artists’ dwellings. The lofted space provides us with ample natural light, a modern industrial design, and it naturally complements our aesthetic. Our tables have never looked better, so come check them out!

2nd Fridays Gallery Night - you're invited!

The Pilsen neighborhood offers a vibrant, creative and collaborative community that brings a great deal of heart to whatever it does. Our opening night coincided with one of Pilsen’s monthly events, an open-gallery night known as the 2nd Fridays Gallery Night. Every second Friday of the month, galleries and stores along Halsted Street and 18th Street open their doors from 6-10pm and offer their guests light refreshments in beautiful and sociable settings.

Our opening evening went off without a hitch and we casually and humbly waltzed our way into our new community with a warm welcome. Mellow tunes were played, cups were filled with Half Acre Beer Company’s craft brews, and our high-quality pieces were well-received.

The next ‘2nd Friday’ will be January 13th, and we would love to see you! Our new location is easily accessible from both 90/94 and the 55, with ample street parking and CTA access. If you can’t make it that evening, please stop by for a cup of coffee and chats between 11a-6p Thursday through Saturday. 

Galleries

We're honored to be featured alongside George Nakashima designs

Elko Hardwoods has several pieces at the Edward Fields & Tai Ping Carpets showroom in Chicago's Merchandise Mart!

Elko Hardwoods has several pieces at the Edward Fields & Tai Ping Carpets showroom in Chicago's Merchandise Mart!

Our live edge furniture feels at home in this gallery

We worked with the Edward Fields and Tai Ping Carpets gallery in Chicago, Illinois last month. Their showroom features several carpets that were designed by the legendary George Nakashima. Nakashima was an inspiration to furniture makers around the world, including our own craftsman, Matt Thomas. Elko Hardwood's live edge furniture fits perfectly with the abstract, colorful nature scenes that Nakashima designed in 1959. Architectural Digest even wrote about the carpets in this showroom, so take a look at their site if you want to learn more.

Live Edge Cherry Bar Height Table

Elko Hardwoods brought three pieces of cherry furniture to the gallery. The first, and our favorite, is this cherry bar height table. We preserved the natural beauty of this single slab by leaving the live edge and resin-filled voids intact. The table features our high quality, silky smooth finish. We paired the slab with a black steel I-beam base that is 36 inches high. You'll feel like you're on top of the world while dining around this modern design. You might also notice some pretty cool stools in the picture. Yes - they're by Thos. Moser!

Modern Cherry Coffee Table

Our second piece is this cherry coffee table. The grain of this piece is exceptional, and it's doubtful that we will find a comparable tree any time soon. We almost felt bad about the coffee table's fiery figure diverting eyes from Nakashima's rug. 

Live Edge Cherry Coffee Table and George Nakashima Rug

Natural Cherry Bench

Elko Hardwoods finished off the showroom with this cherry bench. We love the long, curvy feel of this piece. The steel hairpin base adds a subtle, complementary touch.

Live edge cherry bench

Shows

Thanks, Chicago! We had a blast showcasing our live edge furniture at OOAK

We got this great shot of the Chicago Theatre on Thursday evening after setting up our OOAK booth!

We got this great shot of the Chicago Theatre on Thursday evening after setting up our OOAK booth!

Chicago loved our handmade furniture, and we love Chicago 

We wanted to give a final shout-out to everyone that visited our booth at the Spring One of a Kind Show in Chicago. The team was honored to display our live edge furniture alongside over 300 talented artists. This was our first show in Chicago, and the response was overwhelming. Customers were excited to learn about our contemporary designs and the process of creating reclaimed slab wood furniture. The show truly was one of a kind and one to remember. 

Stay in touch and browse our collection of modern live edge furniture

If you visited our booth, please stay in touch! Requests are pouring in and we are excited for some very cool custom jobs. We are currently working on a live edge maple dining table, a cherry desk, and several hardwood coffee tables. 

If you missed us at the show, that's okay! Explore our current inventory or contact us to commission a piece. We have dining, coffee, conference, side & end tables in stock, along with several desks and benches. They come in a variety of hardwoods, including walnut, cherry, maple, oak, and ash. We leave the natural edge on our slabs and pair them with modern metal bases. Put a piece of nature's beauty in your home or office by furnishing it with Elko Hardwoods.

Goodbye for now, Chicago. We'll be back again soon!

Goodbye for now, Chicago. We'll be back again soon!