December 2014 IssueMADEinVA_winner badge

When an artist like noted painter Fielding Archer, whose portraits have been commissioned by collectors and corporations all over the world, turns his hand to furniture design, the result is a sophisticated collision of form and function. The Heron Collection, a line of outdoor furniture designed by Archer in 2003 and handmade in Ashland, comprises stainless steel that is treated to create a matte (and ├╝ber weather resistant) finish, and an open mesh vinyl weave fabric stitched with a UV protected thread. Its genius design allows the Heron chair to be bolted down to a dock and cantilevered to suspend over the water. Its twin, the Ibis, remains on terra firma but is outfitted with wheels to keep it mobile. In another nod to stylish practicality, the adjustable sling seat may be removed and rolled for storage. Heron and Ibis chairs, $2,