9 Modern Designs That Were Born in the USA

9 Modern Designs That Were Born in the USA

By Heather Corcoran
From small workshops to home studios, we herald a group of American makers.

In today’s globalized market, it’s easier than ever to digitally shop the world. That’s why it’s important to take the time to look locally and celebrate the craftspeople working hard to ensure that a "Made in the USA" designation is still a sign of quality.

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Quilt No. 1 from Louise Gray, $425. Quilting gets a modern spin in the studio of Alexandra Gray Bennett and Jocelin Johnson, where each future heirloom passes through the hands of as many as 10 local artisans.

From the Sun Belt to the Snowbelt, a few of our favorite designers are throwing clay, building furniture, and reviving textile traditions like weaving and quilting. Together, these creatives represent a new wave of homegrown design: one that celebrates our country’s history of handmade objects, honest materials, and hard work. 

Pittburgh, Pennsylvania

Vases by Reiko Yamamoto, $85 each. Ceramicist Reiko Yamamoto creates porcelain tabletop objects with simple forms and poetic imperfections by intuitively responding to the clay as she works.

St. Augustine, Florida

2-Tier Coffee Table by Yield Design Co., from $950. Yield Design’s restrained material palette showcases each element of this flat-pack alder table with powder-coated steel hardware.

Seattle, Washington

Hex Brass Bottle Opener by Iacoli & McAllister, $68. Heavy metal meets minimalism in this Brancusi-like bottle opener from designers Jamie Iacoli and Brian McAllister.

Eureka, California

Four Tens Rug by Nancy Kennedy Designs, $2,000. Nancy Kennedy uses a custom stand-up loom to weave what she calls "art underfoot"—geometric rugs like this reversible wool-and-linen design.

Marfa, Texas

Saddle Leather Cot by Garza Marfa, from $2,125. From their studio in a West Texas art colony, Garza Marfa creates furniture with a rustic bent, like this natural leather lounge with powder-coated steel legs. Call it cowboy modernism.

Chicago, Illinois

Lift Brushed Copper Fruit Bowls by fferrone design, from $260. These sculptural serving pieces by Felicia Ferrone are handcrafted in brass and finished with the metal of the moment: copper.

Los Angeles, California

Stripe and Scandi Lamps (bases shown here) by Mt. Washington Pottery, from $1,200. Beth Katz’s hand-thrown stoneware and porcelain gives Scandinavian style a rough-hewn wabi-sabi energy.

Durham, North Carolina

Maxwell Chair from Elijah Leed, $2,700. In his Bull City studio, Elijah Leed crafts handmade furniture from Appalachian wood. This lounge combines walnut and oiled leather.


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