Whether you’ve just moved to Vancouver, or if you’ve lived here your whole life, you need to get your hands on some stellar furniture to make your house a home. Key pieces that will stay with you through every move – in the same good condition you purchased them in.
But, as all who’ve moved house before know, not all furniture is created equal.
Luckily, there’s somewhere in the city where you can find that perfect piece that will survive your next move, and hopefully many moves to come.
Located in one of the original mills of Vancouver on the banks of the Fraser River, you’ll find J&S Reclaimed Wood, a custom furniture and millwork shop started by two Vancouver locals back in 2012.
Steve McFarlane and Josh Hooge began making furniture from wooden palettes in an East Vancouver backyard because they couldn’t afford to buy it in stores. They put their products up on Craigslist and Etsy and before long, the high-demand they saw drove them to quit their full-time jobs and establish a company.
Now they make clients’ dreams come true by creating functional works of art out of reclaimed wood. It’s a furniture trend that’s here to stay and J&S can easily be your go-to, for more reasons that one.
They salvage the wood themselves
The team at J&S doesn’t wait for a shipment of wood to come into their yard to start work. Instead, they break down shipping pallets and go out to salvage the wood themselves in BC. (Just a few weeks ago the team went and took down two barns in the Fraser Valley!)
And they’re doing great things for the environment. In the last six years of business, they salvaged 120 tonnes of wood, keeping it out of the landfill.
“Everything is solid wood and handmade in our South Vancouver shop, from start to finish. We salvage the wood ourselves, from start to finish. This includes drying out the wood in an on-site kiln,” Steve McFarlane told Daily Hive. This allows the team to keep history alive in their products as much as they can. They have even salvaged wood from a Shaughnessy mansion, dating back to 1902.
Nowadays it’s rare to have everything made in-house but J&S actually make every custom piece they sell by hand. The team uses Canadian-made eco-friendly finishes, too. As a J&S client, you can book a consultation and bring in everything from Google photos to Pinterest boards of what you want to be made, then wait for the magic to happen. “We go through the processes with our clients to bring their dreams to life,” explains McFarlane.
“We can change literally anything or make anything in any shape,” he says. So whether you want a dining table, a headboard, light fixtures, shelves, a bar cart, wooden barn doors, or wall panelling made, the Vancouver shop can make it for you. Any size. Any style. Any colour. Everything is 100% customizable.
“Everyone here in Vancouver has a unique space. The square footage is not a typical box and everyone’s trying to live in micro-lofts and funky spaces, so they can have key pieces of furniture,” McFarlane adds.
How it’s different
A lot of the products made at J&S are made from ‘old growth’ fir- trees that were cut down years ago (and the same material that all of the character houses on the west side are made from). “We’re using old fir that no longer exists and it’s the highest quality. In most cases, we’re using a material that’s extinct,” said McFarlane.
The company deals with 50% residential and 50% commercial projects. So they can do millwork for your home, a restaurant or a retail store, or boardroom tables for office – you name it.
“We made a conference table for a film company in Chinatown which was eight feet by ten feet.” The company was on the third floor so J&S built the table to be taken apart in three pieces. Yep, they’re prepared to go the extra mile for their clients. “It’s really rewarding when our client comes to pick up their product or we deliver it, or if we’re installing the millwork in their home and we see it come to life. It’s a great feeling,” McFarlane explains.
Where: Unit 43 – 1640 East Kent Avenue, South Vancouver
- Monday to Friday, 10 am to 6 pm (appointment recommended)
- Evenings, Saturday and Sunday by appointment.