Saturday, January 25, 2014

Make music not furniture, nay, make musical furniture

Tor Clausen, inventor and creator of Musical Furnishings. Photo: Facebook.

There should be more music in the world, in fact, every room we inhabit should have access to music. Tor Clausen, a Seattle-ite by birth, took over a portion of an old sewing warehouse in Olympia to make music out of furniture, or make furniture out of music.


He does both, his furniture provides music in a unique way – Clausen’s furnitre is the musical instrument.

He comes to the art of invention by way of heredity. His mother grew up in Copenhagen in an inventor’s studio which likely offered intriguing toys. In fact, Clausen’s website boasts, “Her family had the first patent for pinned name tags and sold them throughout Europe.” His father squeezed in years of woodworking experience after completing a degree in Economics and ran spectacular economy minded pursuits such as building the family’s Seattle home.

Tor Clausen himself is a product of a Washington State education. He holds a degree in Natural Sciences and Design from Evergreen State College and emerged to work in the field of graphic design, and kept the midnight oil burning by designing furniture on the side, or rather designing side furniture. Well, both.

End Table. Photo:
In 1995, Clausen built his first handcrafted piece of musical furniture and conquered the world of clever and harmonious, giving any room in the house the compliment of being very cool.

Tor Clausen’s musical furnishings – side tables, coffee tables, chests, benches, and the lovely backyard or porch swing – have been featured at shows, festivals, galleries and museums in Washington State, and around the world. According to his website, Clausen appears around the world as well, Hong Kong and California (which to many Washingtonian’s is a foreign country) promoting and speaking about his musical furniture creations.

A few years back the workshop moved south, so far south it now calls Portland, Oreg. home. But where apples get wet (the website about Washington State) won’t hold that against him. Especially after previewing his instruments in this YouTube video:

Browse Musical Furnishings Etsy Shop to discover current offerings, and should you find yourself in the Southwest Washington area, take a quick jaunt across the Interstate 5 Bridge to visit the tidy Musical Furnishings workshop along the Willamette River.

Musical Furnishings
425 SE 3rd Ave, #403
Portland OR 97214
503 805-7301