One unique aspect of a professional course at the Chippendale school is that it also teaches the basics of business planning and marketing.

Because there’s little point in being the best furniture designer in the world if you can’t market yourself.

It’s a holistic approach designed to give our students the best start to their new careers in woodworking.

On top of advice on, for example, website design, we require students to design and print a set of marketing materials.

This year, the Marketing Award was won by Heather Jones from Los Angeles, who came to us with no woodworking skills

Before coming to the Chippendale school, Heather was an art director and graphic designer.

She therefore already had the visual and artistic skills to design her own pieces.

Indeed, one of her hobbies was designing furniture, but without having the skills to make it.

That visual skill was further learned working as a set and production designer in Hollywood.

Her artistry came to light in her Gertrude’s Cabinet of Cocktail Curiosities.

It’s a stunning and monumental piece 75cm wide and 100 cm high.  It’s entirely from stained sycamore.

Inside, it has two drawers ideal, so Heather says, “for love poems scribbled on napkins while sipping (too much) gin.”

The playful nature of her pieces is also evident in her “Double Oh James Darling, Get me a Cocktail” Table.

That fun and playful approach was carried through into a beautifully-designed marketing brochure she created.

Heather will be staying on at the school for a few months then returning to the USA to set up Heather Jones Bespoke Furniture.