New Canadian Classics?

On Thursday, I dropped into Toronto’s Urban Mode for a preview of Alberta designer Tim Antoniuk’s latest furniture series for his company, Question Objects. Truth be told, it was the three-drawer console above with its quirky, off-kilter legs that got me out to the media event. I wanted to see for myself if the quality lived up to the design on these Arctic-inspired, made-in-Canada pieces.

Manufactured in Edmonton, Question Objects furniture is shipped to boutique retailers across North America — Urban Mode is the exclusive Toronto seller. The pieces are made of solid walnut or oak with some bent plywood/veneer construction for the distinctive, curling corner pulls on the Leaf series cabinets. The drawer boxes are lined with a textured, anaglyptic treatment.

“I think people love surprises,” says Antoniuk, “and when you open the drawer it’s a neat little detail. That’s why we did the hidden drawer (below) on the dresser, that kind of care and attention makes a piece special.”

Question Objects is taking a somewhat unorthodox approach and completely skipping the trade fair circuit, which the designer notes costs $20,000 – $30,000 per show, expenses that have to be factored into the final retail price. As it is, the console in the lead pic retails for about $1,900, not a fortune but not inexpensive either (complete pricing here).

Even the drawer pulls are made in Canada although Antoniuk concedes he could source them in China for one-tenth the price. “But it’s a philosophical issue,” he says. “I want it all to be made-in-Canada.”

One other thing to note about Question Objects is that the wood is all finished with a special oil/polymer and wax finish that allows the wood to breath thus preventing splitting and cracking. The finish is durable and easily repaired if scratched.

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Monday, April 14, 2014 by Chris
This post was written by - who has written 865 posts on styleNorth.

4 Comments For This Post

  1. Lofty Ambitions Says:

    I just looked into Question Objects last week, and the asymmetrical console is one that grabbed my attention too. We’re considering carrying some pieces in our store and on our website. It’s nice to see modern made in Canada design. It seems very hard to find. As you mentioned it’s a bit of a premium price, but I don’t think anything outlandish as some designer pieces can be.

  2. New Toronto Condos Says:

    The three door console is amazing!

  3. KarenJ Says:

    ‘Made in Canada’ is always good to see!

  4. Suz Says:

    Hmmm, the Leaf line is a little Spanner ripoff-y albeit in an updated wood color but I’m really tired of the espresso and wenge tones. Kudos for keeping it Canadian. The pricing rivals some DWR lines but at least shopping at Urban Mode would spare you the DWR attitude – unless they become UM ;) Still in all, nice lines and great craftsmanship deserve this jaded lady’s nod.
    If I were a young KIWI or Liberty Village dweller I’d consider one or two Antoniuk pieces before Gus Modern etc. and I agree with you Chris, the wax finish is a nice touch.

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