Meet the Makers || Celebrating the Cultivated Craftspeople

Meet the Makers | Celebrating the Cultivated Craftspeople

As we are celebrating Cultivated’s nomination as a Banskia Awards finalist, we reflect on the people and businesses, without whom we would not be where we are. Cultivated is a collective of passionate workshops spanning Australia, each expert in their medium, and whose collective experience spans many hundreds of years.


Pictured: Vitra Organic Chair Under Restoration

Cultivated began in 2013 as a product stewardship program for Cult Design. To extend the life of Cult Designs products, Cultivated provided pathways for furniture to be restored and resold well before circular economy was becoming a staple word of the furniture industry. Given the complex materiality of furniture, it was necessary to seek out the best craftspeople who could work with a variety of materials such as timber, metal and upholstery. The early day of Cultivated consisted of two Sydney partners. Mondo Upholstery and APR detailed joinery.


Pictured: Fredericia EJ5 Corona Chair being prepared for re-upholstery by Mondo


Pictured: Fritz Hansen Series 7 being refurbished by APR.

Through Cultivated, Mondo quickly became the go-to in Australia for classic products made by Fritz Hansen and Eric Jorgensen. When comparing a newly restored Swan Chair, Fritz Hansen officials noted the exact similarity in detail between a new Swan and our restored Swan. An amazing feat considering the high level of detail and hand stitching component of the chair, which takes almost 3 hours to complete.


Pictured: Fritz Hansen Swan Chair being hand stitched by Mondo

Similarly, APR became experts in restoring Fritz Hansen Series 7 Chairs. The high level of detail and care given to each one could see a chipped and scratched chair of more than 40 years of age be restored back to its original condition to live on for another 40 years. It’s a testament to the quality of the product and to the skilled craftspeople we have in Australia.


Pictured: Fritz Hansen Series 7 Chair; Before


Pictured: Fritz Hansen Series 7 Chair; After

As Cultivated grew so did our network and expertise. In 2021 we relaunched as a product stewardship program for the industry, working with any authentic furniture and lighting product, not just those from Cult Design. This time also brought new opportunities and an expansion into Melbourne.

Quickly Cultivated grew from 2 restoration partners to 9, and with workshops in both Sydney and Melbourne, it allowed projects to be completed locally in each of the major cities we operate in. This supported local skills and economies and minimised long interstate transport movements of our products. Melbourne has a long manufacturing history in Australia and two of our partners began their journeys back in the 1940’s.

With beginnings back in 1948 by Ted Stone and Jack Furniss, Linear Metal Polishing is a wealth of knowledge and supports Cultivated in the restoration of many components such as chair frames, bases and lighting products. With the Stone family still involved, and under the guise of new owner Jon Fowler, linear has grown to support finishing and restoration services across products from furniture all the way to large truck components. No matter how big or small the component though, Linear treats each with care.


Pictured: HAY About A Chair base before polishing


Pictured: HAY About A Chair base being polished by Linear

Starting in 1947, AJ Cook has been a staple of the Melbourne Furniture manufacturing scene for many decades. Beginning in Brunswick and then relocating to Coburg, the team are experts in mid-century and vintage furniture, having experience of both restoration and producing new fully finished furniture products. They are trusted experts and advisers on Cultivated’s projects and are integral to the success of our Melbourne division.


Pictured: Fredericia Corona Chair


Pictured: Fredericia Corona Chair being carefully unstitched


Pictured: Fredericia Corona Chair being carefully unstitched

Recently Cultivated moved into its first studio and warehousing space in Thornbury, VIC. This is in partnership with Mark Tuckey, the well-known timber furniture maker in Melbourne. The sharing of this space between the two brands allows Cultivated to utilise the expertise of the Mark Tuckey team when it comes to all things timber. Most recently they have restored classic pieces like Fritz Hansen Series 7 Chairs, Eames LCW chairs and Artek Stools.


Pictured: Artek Stools being disassembled


Pictured: Artek Stools being sanded back by the Mark Tuckey team

Cultivated is more than a brand. It is a collective of some of the most skilled craftspeople Australia has to offer. Through our partners Cultivated brings experience, care and detail to our projects, and in turn our clients get too contributed to local skills and trades and a sustainable circular economy.


The 35th Annual Banksia Awards will be held on the 4th of April at the Melbourne Convention Centre. For any inquires please contact Joshua Ellis on 0417 758 669 or at .

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