Here, we ask designers to take a selfie and give us an inside look at their life.
Age: 38 (Maria) and 39 (Dave).
Occupation: Furniture designers and woodworkers.
Hometown: Guadalajara, Mexico (Maria) and Windsor, CT (Dave).
Studio location: Tolland, CT.
Describe what you make: At SinCa, we design and fabricate contemporary hardwood furniture. We offer a small collection of designs, mostly for residential settings. Dave and I make every piece to order utilizing traditional woodworking techniques. This way of working gives us the flexibility to meet the client’s needs by customizing almost every piece.
The most important thing you’ve designed to date: SinCa is the most important design we’ve made together. It could be seen just as a business, but for us every step we take is part of a big design. We are designing a place where we can make what we love and in a way we are designing our lifestyle.
We use the same design process to create a business than what we use to design a piece of furniture. Our design process tries to show our identity and our personalities. We treat our furniture the same way we treat our clients, and each piece of furniture is one more element of that big design.
Describe the problem your work solves: We solve problems at different levels of our work.
We work together with interior designers, helping them solve problems in their own projects by customizing our designs to meet their needs. Often we are asked to change proportions, finishes, and some shapes. On occasion, we design pieces that are not in our collection by collaborating with our clients to create something new for a specific project.
It makes us very happy when we know that a client chose to work with us not only because they like our designs but also because they feel comfortable solving problems with us.
But before we arrived at that point, we solved problems in the design and fabrication process. Our collection mostly originated from the furniture we’ve made for our house, which we’ve adapted to offer to the market. The first problem we solved is to furnish our house, we live with our designs and are able to refine the details before we offer them to the market.
We are normal people who love beautiful objects, so we believe the furniture we’ve created for our own house can give the same pleasure to other people.
Describe the project you are working on now: We are working on a number of orders, many pieces from the collection, and a couple of custom pieces including bed frames, expanding tables, and bookcases.
We have a backlog of orders so we are using weekends and time between orders to create a stock of drink stands named Señoritas. They will be one-of-a-kind pieces made of wood scraps and a stone top. We will have a few of these Señoritas at Field & Supply in Kingston, New York, in October. We are thinking this will be a continuous collection of one-of-a-kind pieces, unlike the rest of our work this will be ready to ship instead of made-to-order.
We are also working on an upholstered armchair. This is the first time we’re making a fully upholstered piece, so it has been a challenge. It will be a comfortable and elegant chair to read on. We are close to being done and we are looking forward to sharing it with the world.
A new or forthcoming project we should know about: We just launched the Mezcal & Rattan collection a couple of months ago so we are in the very early stages of designing the next collection. It is an exciting moment because it is the moment when you start to brainstorm ideas with sketches. I’m imagining it will include a new expanding dining table and more cabinetry, but we’re still brainstorming. The plan is to launch it by the end of 2022. And if things continue going well for SinCa, we’ll be able to take our studio out of our house and have a larger shop with more production capacity.
What you absolutely must have in your studio: Natural light, water, chocolate, and heat during winter (Maria). Cats, music, and AC during the summer (Dave). We both need a clean and well-organized space.
What you do when you’re not working: Our wood-shop and studio are attached to our house, so it’s very hard to disconnect, but we take at least one weekend day off. When I disconnect, I like to go outside and work on my garden, cook, or FaceTime with my family while I cook. For Dave, SinCa is his second job. I transformed his hobby into a business so we’re looking for a new hobby for him.
Sources of creative envy: Hans Wegner and Jaime Hayon.
The distraction you want to eliminate: I would like to spend more time creating new designs but I feel I need to finish my to-do list before that, but the to-do list never ends, so I just need to make a creative space for myself (Maria). Work (Dave).
Concrete or marble? Marble (Maria). Concrete (Dave).
High-rise or townhouse? Townhouse (Maria). High-rise (Dave).
Remember or forget? Remember (Maria). Forget (Dave).
Aliens or ghosts? Ghosts, but only on Dia de los Muertos (Maria). I don’t like ghosts, and aliens are like bugs, so I guess ghosts are better than aliens (Dave).
Dark or light? Light (Maria). Dark (Dave).