Eco-Friendly Furniture Made in America | American Estates | Northwest Arkansas ALIVE

Eco-Friendly Furniture Made in America | American Estates | Northwest Arkansas ALIVE


I’m here with Niki one of
the owners of American Estates. So you and your husband
Jesse opened up this custom furniture
shop together but there’s gonna be
a back story to this. There is, so American Estates
started in 2012. It was kind of just a part time
passion project of Jesse’s but it quickly grew
to something much much more. And when we met four years ago
I very quickly got involved and that’s when the business
really started to take on a life of its own and become something a little
bit more substantial for us. What were you guys
doing before this though? So before Jessie worked
with his dad and his dad
was in home construction and Jesse learned
a lot of skills and learned the trade there. But his passions
were really more to pursue something creative and to do something
kind of original to him. And I was in the marketing and
design world and a corporate job and I was just chomping
at the bit to do my own thing and to find a way
to express my creative energy. But in a little bit
of a different way than I had already found. And what is your favorite
piece to work on? I really do love
creating dining tables. I think that there’s something
really special about sitting down at a table
with your family and loving the piece
that you’re sitting at. Having having a dining table
that is a conversation starter and makes a really big statement I think is just
a really cool experience. So all this wood that
you use where does it come from? It comes from all
over the place. One of Jesse’s biggest passions
is sourcing materials. We love working
with reclaimed material as well as really unique pieces that you really have to search
for things like big slabs the premium materials
that are really kind of hard to come by.
A lot of your wood is actually
from northwest Arkansas. And it’s for Northwest Arkansas. So how is the community support
been for you guys so far? It’s been really incredible
it’s been humbling for us to see how excited people
are to see our work and to know that you know
this table that they’re seeing maybe it was a tree
just a few years ago that maybe came down
due to a storm or had to be cut down
for development for some reason. But we love taking materials that really
they’re still premium materials. They just came down prematurely
and it’s always really exciting to see
the unique characteristics of that material the Ozarks
have some truly beautiful wood. How would you say your furniture and your specific designs actually represent
Northwest Arkansas? Yeah so. I would say that our design
is modern industrial with a little bit of rustic and we think that it’s a great
example of the design taste in Northwest Arkansas
because it is truly unique. It’s high end
but it still has character and a little bit
of a unique flair that is truly
just part of those arcs. Yeah.
You know you meet people and they’ve got pieces
in their home that came from Japan
or some other place that’s across the pond
and it’s kind of more impressive when it came from right here
in your own backyard. Yeah I think there’s really
something cool to be said about having a table and knowing that it was standing
not too far from you just a few years ago and knowing that you’re giving
that piece of wood in that tree another chance at life
and another story. So you and your husband
run this business together what’s that like working
with your spouse? Well it definitely
has its challenges some days. But overall
I absolutely love it. I think the fact that we’re able
to work on this together and grow this company
is something that’s honestly one of the most rewarding
parts of my life. So one of the coolest things
about this I think anyways is that even though you came from
a marketing background corporate and all of that you’re not
just here to sell advertisements and get your name out there you’re actually
getting your hands dirty. Absolutely. For several years
when I met Jesse it was just the two of us
building things and together he and I built over
a thousand pieces of furniture just the two of us.
And that’s really a unique thing because this is predominantly
a male industry and it’s been really cool for me
to jump in and realize that you know it’s not just guys
who can make amazing things but that I’ve been able to jump
in learn woodworking and be able to be part
of bringing so many amazing pieces
to the world. So Jessi we met
your wife Niki and it sounds like she pretty much
does it all here. So what do you do?
What do you a supervisor? That would be nice. Yeah she’s she’s definitely
the boss now. I would say you know
my, my main role is the design visionary
that’s that’s most you know that’s my my biggest passion.
You are very talented. She did give you high praise
but what is this here. What are we looking at? Well this here is kind of just
this is a slab of white oak and it’s pretty typical of
something that we do around here this is a piece
that was salvaged from a damaged tree locally.
It’s it’s still got bark on it you know on both sides
or irregular edge. So what we’re gonna do
is we’re gonna square it up clean it up and get it ready to use
as a small accent table. Perfect. All right let’s
get started. Safety first. Oh good point.
Safe and fashionable. So Jesse we’ve squared up
the slab it’s looking great. What is the next step. So the next step is
we’re gonna send it through the planer here. And what the planer does is its
got a whole bunch of sharp teeth in there we’re gonna
feed this board in there and it’s gonna start
flattening it and taking some of the twist in some of the irregularities
out of it. Okay.
So like off of the top here. Yes ma’am. Because it looks to me
it looks great. Already you can see back here
you know that it’s got a little bit
of a rock to it. OK so it’s gonna start
cutting that down to uniformity so we’ll do both sides. You guys are perfectionists
around here. Well it’s gotta be right. Otherwise,
if its gonna rock here it’s gonna rock
on someone’s floor You gotta get it right.
Let’s do this. So as you can see
that first pass is cleaned it up
quite a bit yeah. Its taken a lot off
this corner here. These lines. And so these
are these are lower impressions from the band
saw that originally cut it. So ideally we’re gonna send it
through multiple times until this is
all smooth and flat but we’ll have to alternate
between this side and the other side.
OK. To achieve
that little by little. All right. Let’s do it. Jesse that was awesome.
That was easier than I thought. How did I do?
You did great. If you want a job
just let me know. Think I could build
some furniture. Absolutely. I’ll leave that to you guys and it’s going to take a little
while for this piece to get done. But you guys have some furniture
we can take a look at At your soon to be new showcase
room. Oh yeah. Yeah we do.
Let’s go check it out. Wow you guys
this is really great. You’ve done
some awesome work here. Thank you very much.
Yeah. Looking forward
to the showroom being opened but I got to start by asking you
about the actual space. There’s a lot of character here
I love it. But did it take a little work to
get to this point? A little bit. Yeah.
More than a little. When we found this place and it had suffered
many decades of abuse. So there was multiple layers
of different walls substrates on top of this sheet
rock, paneling, plaster all to get down to
these beautiful original bricks. So it was a it was definitely
a large labor of love but it’s totally worth it
to see this back in its former glory and really representing
this downtown area. You guys probably looked
at a lot of spaces before you found
this one I’m guessing. Yes. How did you land on this
one? Well honestly you know the the opportunity it came up
was incredible. But what really drew us
to this area I really believe
in downtown Rogers. I mean I just think
it’s just a fantastic downtown. People are excited about it. It’s just got a lot
of open awesome space and lots of beautiful buildings.
But we also we’re two doors down from the brand new
Onyx headquarters and we have
a longstanding relationship with Onyx Coffee Lab. Having done four build outs
for them. So we have a great deal
of our furniture and stuff in that new location
and I was doing a delivery there and saw a sign
in the window here and and just knew instantly
that this was this was the one. So speaking of, I know
you guys are just now starting to move in. What can we expect
in this space. What will it look like
when it’s done. The space is basically
going to feel like you’re walking
into someone’s home. So we’re gonna have
different rooms set up so that you can come in
and really visualize what our furniture
and some of the decor would look like in your own home
or in your office, or in your business and you can really envision
an entire space not just seeing
an individual furniture piece but kind of envisioning
it in your own home. OK so no pressure
but when are you guys opening? We are going to be open and ready
for visitors in October. Likely around the end
of the month. So be on the lookout
for an actual opening date but in October
we’re gonna be ready for you. But if you see the lights on
and people in here, come on and say hey Maybe bring some coffee you’re
probably working.


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