Dowel Jones is the creation of two enterprising Australian designers, Adam Lynch and Dale Hardiman.
Lynch and Hardiman founded Dowel Jones after graduating university together in 2014. At that point, they began working on furniture designs for cafes and restaurants around them. Their furniture pieces soon gained popularity, and Dowel Jones moved into homeware and lighting as well.
Designs at Dowel Jones have a pared down aesthetic, infused with the playful personality of the designers. This is particularly evident in the names of some products like Bradley Hooper, Simon Says, and Sir Burly, but is by no means limited to them. Each of their designs look at everyday objects from a fresh viewpoint. They explore a way to create products for the home locally with less materials, while giving them their own character. For instance, the FUN chair is a minimal chair made with steel frames and moulded ply shell seating. Available in a multitude of colors and with upholstered seating, the chair is also stackable. The rounded back of the chair and the juxtaposition of the simple shapes and colors together can invoke a playfulness, like that of a child in a playground, but the piece is also designed with serious consideration towards functionality. The Thimble Tables are part of a Thimble Family of products, all taking inspiration from the thimble design. The table has a circular wooden top and a powder coated aluminium base that draws on the shape of a thimble. Simple in design, yet it never fails to bring beauty and joy to a space. Sir Burly Stool, another piece that is part of a family of products with the name, is designed as a circular oak seating atop a steel base. The base forms the identity of the design, immediately evoking the image of a person sledding.
One of their novel designs is a cabinet by the name Venena Arca. Made for the Milan Furniture Fair, the designers took inspiration from the age old practice of tattooing. The design is also inspired by the Cabinet of Curiosities - a room filled with natural antiques and fossils. Based off of this, the pair designed the cabinet with toxic native Australian plants tattooed on the surface. With Venena Arca, which translates to poisonous cabinet, the duo demonstrates a different perspective from which to look at the world.
At Dowel Jones, it is not just the thoughtful designs that stand out however. Lynch and Hardiman work with local manufacturers located in Australia as far as possible. This helps them create a sustainable local system and ensures quality control. But they do believe in the power of collaboration across borders. By teaming up with designers around the world, they design and manufacture products for different countries. Working with New York based 3D artist Tom Hancocks, the pair created the Sister Collection in 2018. The collection married the NY designer's outlandish style with the minimal and quirky aesthetic of Dowel Jones. And together, they created a set of upholstered seating that traverses the fine line between luxurious and lively. Following this, they partnered with an American manufacturer to make their designs available in the US while being locally manufactured.
Dowel Jones places a great deal of care onto their design and manufacturing process. With it, they ensure that those who buy from them get to enjoy pieces with personality while supporting local craftsmen and the sustainable movement.