Vendor Spotlight: Brace and Bit
“I just really liked shop,” he says, laughing. He attributes the class to introducing him to woodworking. And his first project? A googly-eyed, red-nosed wooden reindeer (how Portland!).
After high school, Gary cultivated his woodworking skills— getting jobs at local furniture stores and practicing woodworking on his own. In 2012, he started Brace and Bit and crafts modern furniture made from urban salvaged hardwood — or wood from city trees that when cut down, would otherwise go to waste. Gary makes benches, beds, shelves, and small homegoods, but his specialty is in building single-slab tabletops.
“I make furniture that is functional and looks like it came from nature,” says Gary.
He retains the natural identity and organic qualities of the pieces of wood he uses. In some of his furniture, the original tree shape and outside edge is intact, revealing the knots and unique story of a particular tree. Gary uses an organic, hand-rubbed finish instead of spraying his furniture with a potentially hazardous chemical-based finish.
Gary hopes to open a gallery showroom in the near future, but until then, come see (and buy!) his pieces at the Sunday Emporium.