Our professional course students learn all about different species of timber and how their properties and patinas can be blended to create stunning furniture.

It’s something that Jacob Corradi from Oxfordshire knew something about already as, before coming to the school, he worked with his father building birch canoes.

But there’s a big difference between the skills needed to make a canoe seaworthy and watertight, and the skills required to make a beautiful yet functional piece of furniture.

His first major project has been the design and creation of a desk, with an olive ash frame and fumed oak top with a live edge.  The desk’s two drawers and cabinet, which also has a secret compartment held in with magnets, are finished with steel handles.

The legs, each made from two pieces of olive ash, are all on a perfect curve and, as a design flourish, appear to protrude from the desk’s top.

But it’s the way that Jacob has thought through the contrasts between the two wood types that gives his desk a “wow” factor, taking it from being merely functional to a thing of dramatic beauty.

It’s a bold design and an ambitious project to have undertaken at this stage of the course, underlining Jacob’s very real skills and craftsmanship.