There's something awesome about a gal who knows her way around power tools, and doubly so when there's some gorgeous upcycled furniture coming out of the equation. Transplanted from California to the neighbourhood of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Ariele Alasko of Brooklyn to West makes some pretty darn cool pieces, transforming salvaged wood into tasteful, geometric wonders.
Switching from sculpture to furniture design while initially working out of a small apartment shared with a "very patient boyfriend," Alasko's story tells a lot about her persistence and resourcefulness as a designer and maker:
I’m a builder, a fixer, and a do-it-myselfer. My favorite things in life are big tools, old wood, good pasta, and finding great materials in a dumpster. I grew up in California, and blindly moved to New York seven years ago when I was accepted into art school for sculpture. I instantly fell in love with the grungy part of Brooklyn, and within a month, we had moved into Bedstuy. I have lived in the same apartment for five years now, which has given me plenty of time to slowly “fix” a few things around the house: de-carpet stairways, tile in kitchen… you name it!
Alasko has since found a decently sized studio space from which to work out of, and she continues to hammer out lovely patterned pieces that have a lot of panache.
I love how there is judicious use of contrasting spots of colour, set against a consistently playful palette of changing geometric configurations.
True to her DIY creed, one of Alasko's recent pieces feature handblock-printed linen upholstering on a vintage Victorian chair. Impressive.