When it’s all gone, what will you build with?

Today we live in the Anthropocene, a period in which human activity has become the dominant influence on the environment. Nature isn’t what it used to be, and, in this lecture, we will explore the complicated relationship between the natural and man-made worlds. What is really happening around us and how does material selection play a role in the outcome?

The lecture is an accredited AIA and IDCEC CEU and will be hosted in the AIA Center for Architecture, New York.

Join us in person or online for one of two live streamed sessions and better understand the complexity in the “real” versus “fake” quandary. Register here

KBB on Chair Competition 2019

KBB – Kitchen and Bath Business – magazine, delivers exclusive features on cutting-edge design installations, new products, business developments, industry personalities, best practices and solid market research. It is the Official Publication of KBIS and NKBA.

KBB Magazine continues to provide progressive and insightful coverage of the industry’s products, trends and services, with a sophisticated visual style befitting a design-oriented readership. And we are thrilled and honored with their article.

See Article here

The Future Inspires Students to use Parametric Design to Create Chairs for ICFF Annual Student Chair Design Competition from Wilsonart

“The Future” was the theme that students at Kent State University considered to design chairs for the 15th Annual Wilsonart Challenges Student Chair Design Competition. Each entry was inspired by the students’ personal interpretation of what The Future means and how it can be expressed in a chair design. For the first time this year, students were encouraged to explore this theme through parametric design and digital fabrication. Students used patterns from the Wilsonart® Laminate Collection. The winning chair and five runners up will make their first public appearance in booth #2213 at the 2019 International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF) in New York.

Read More…

#Wilsonartchallenges #ICFF 2019

I am so happy to be working with Wilsonart on the 15th year of their Student Chair Competition. This year’s design school was Kent State University and their students have enchanted the crowds here at ICFF 2019.

To such an extent that we won a Metropolis magazine award! We are here at booth 2213 and hope you can visit.

Canadian Magic!

Last week I was delighted to take part in the excellent Wood at Work 2018 conference. My thanks to Forests Ontario for the above photo of me at the end of the stage quickly taking as many notrs as possible. By the end of the 2 days my notes were over an inch thick. This is certainly a conference to attend if you are involved in specifying or using wood.

I really enjoyed catching up with the ever engaging, and one of our most intelligent commentators on archictecture and sustainability, Lloyd Alter. I highly recommend that you visit his website – – I promise you will find it one of the most useful resources in North America.

Earlier in October I had the great honour of speaking at the Greenbuilding Festival 2018 organized by Sustainable Buildings Canada. This show is already scheduled for October 8 2019 at the Toronto Marriott Downtown Eaton Centre. I highly recommend this event too.

For me it is incredible to be given the opportunities to speak at these powerful gatherings and to meet researchers, scientists, builders and entrepreneurs who are committed to building a sustainable way for humans to live here on Earth. It can be done. Watch this space.

LIVE from AIA NY Center for Architecture

Currently being broadcast to architecture and design firms nationwide Grace Jeffers giving her Global Forestry CEU lecture.

Architects and designers across the country are invited to participate in the second annual National Day of Learning. For decades, architects and designers have specified wood to bring warmth and beauty to their work. Many in the architecture and design community believe that since trees can be replanted, they’re a renewable source. Unfortunately, trees are renewable, forests are not.

Over 1000 guests have already  logged in to watch this highly respected speaker discuss how designers will save the world.

Register to participate in the 3:00pm ET Livestream

National Day of Learning October 3rd 2018

Wilsonart announces a renewed commitment to help educate architects and designers (A&D) about using responsibly sourced wood materials. To further support the A&D community, Wilsonart is conducting a second National Day of Learning event, launching a cross country education tour, adding new content to its educational hub, and renewing its grant to Interlochen Arts Academy – reaching tomorrow’s designers, today.

Please join us Oct. 3 for a live-streamed CEU: Global Forestry 101 with Grace Jeffers, thought-leader, design historian and materials expert, who will tackle the lack of understanding within the industry about which woods and forests are endangered or threatened, and educate about which woods should not be sourced.

Wilsonart invites architects and designers across the U.S. to join us via livestream on the topic of Global Forestry and what architects and designers need to know to protect their practices. The CEU will take place on October 3rd, 2018 from The Center for Architecture in NYC . The Global Forestry CEU, which is accredited by AIA and IDCEC, will be streamed live and presented by Grace Jeffers, an American writer, historian and educator, who is known for an interdisciplinary and integrated approach to the study of materials.

Here is the link to the registration page.

Wilsonart Challenges Chair Design Competition 2018 Begins…

The journey to next year’s ICFF begins today

The College of Architecture and Environmental Design (CAED) at Kent State University is the setting for this year’s chair competition. Grace is delighted to be working closely with the great Pamela Evans, Ph.D., FIDEC, IIDA, LEED AP – who is the Director of the Interior Design Program and Associate Professor.

The chair class, as ever is made up of an eclectic group of architecture and design students who are blissfully unaware of what lies ahead. Grace’s famous chair drawing class gave them an inkling of what is to come. This class is a marathon review of chair history, narrated by Grace and drawn by the students. They complete over a 100 drawings in as many minutes and is designed to re-program any preconceptions the students may have about chairs.

There now follows a period of intense learning about the material they will use to build their chairs – Wilsonart laminate. The theme for this year’s competition is Parametric Design and Digital Fabrication in which Kent State University is a leader. We look forward to reviewing the designs to come and to ICFF 2019.