Dr. Tony Tonks
Plastic and Reconstruction Surgeon
I was unwittingly collecting Evan’s work before I knew it; I happened to buy a couple of his early pieces through a gallery when he was just starting out. Two years ago, he called me up and said “Tony, I have finally found the log!” He called it his “Number 2” log because it was only the second log of this quality he has come across. Evan and his craftsmen made Lynne and I an Oxbow with 10 Clearwater chairs, all from the same log of highly figured Otway blackwood. Magnificent!
I commissioned from Evan – to the measurements that my occupational therapist recommended – a rocking chair, a dining chair and an outdoor chair. My chairs are works of art, bring me joy, comfort and lots of favourable comments. I’m housebound and I like to be surrounded by beautiful things that are practical/functional and are the simple pleasures of life…
My wife Angela and I received a Tamar coffee table crafted by the incredibly skilled team at Dunstone Design as a wedding gift from some very good friends. It was completely unexpected and totally over the top as far as wedding gifts go and we love it. We had an awkward space to fill in our sitting room which left room for a coffee table – but as a designer myself, it was a question of “which one would ever be good enough?” In addition to that space being “difficult” to furnish, we never really understood the curve of our kitchen bench in terms of the composition of the adjoining rooms. As soon as the Tamar coffee table arrived it tied everything together. The sleek sweeping lines of the solid jarrah timber construction and tinted glass top really finish off our living space beautifully. It is hard to imagine the room without it now. Thanks as always to Evan, Fenella and the whole team at Dunstone Design. Your skill and ability as Australia’s finest furniture craftsmen is only matched by your generosity, integrity, and honesty.
We had an aging display cabinet (nearly forty years old), which had passed its use by date. We had always admired the items on show in the Dunstone Design showroom but making the leap to a commissioned or even a showroom floor piece was a big step. We visited Evan in the showroom and explained our need. Evan asked a lot of questions about what we had, what we wanted, why we wanted it, what we liked about existing furniture and what type of timber we liked. He began sketching out some ideas in his big black book. A few pages later we were starting to see something that we might like. The discussion continued about what we liked and what we wanted. The first outcome was a sketch which looked good, but there was a promise of a better one. Sure enough in a few days two beautiful sketches were produced, one a very traditional piece which was very attractive and the second was more in the style of the Dunstone tradition. We took both away and arranged for Evan to visit the room where the cabinet would live. This was probably the most useful part of the design process. Evan’s visit was not a fleeting one. He considered the rest of the furniture and the other items in the room. He then made suggestions about the design and what type of wood could be used to compliment the room. Then another visit to the display room to see other items and to get an idea of what the finished cabinet might look like. Both designs were beautiful and there was much discussion in our house about which design would be best. Eventually we were persuaded by all the other beautiful furniture in the showroom to choose the Dunstone inspired design. All through this process Evan guided, assisted and helped, but most importantly he listened to our thoughts and ideas on what we would like. In the end we have a beautiful artwork which we appreciate. Then the process of construction. We knew it would take some time and we were prepared for that, but the really nice surprise was to be invited to the workshop to see progress and to talk to Rolf Barfoed and Daniel Mansson, who were crafting the cabinet. I have never seen two more enthusiastic workmen, and both took immense pride in what they were doing. They patiently explained what they were doing and the techniques used to produce the cabinet. Over the next few weeks we made several visits, each time seeing the progress and making some final decisions on features that would be included. This complimented the design process because we were involved during construction and we loved it. We are absolutely delighted with final product which is both beautiful and useful. The design and build process was a pleasure. Steve and Mary Anne Neilsen.