planet’s core intention is to draw attention to beauty
natural fibres, handcrafting, sustainability, integrity and style are all our focus at planet. our belief is that by paying attention and by attempting to make sense at all times, we can help draw attention to beauty, while being responsible with our environment.
natural fibres age beautifully and have inherent characteristics that make for superior useability and longevity and uniqueness to an end product. there is a history in the material that gives an object life beyond the obvious and this adds meaning.
fine crafting makes best use of raw materials and adds levels of value, so that an item has unique character and this can be an expression of the person who uses and interacts with it daily. in this way, an item will be cared for and valued by someone who has carefully chosen it.
sustainability is an inherent characteristic that is essential for our future. as human population grows, our natural world is under increasing pressure and we all have a responsibility to help maintain the health of our environment for all and for the future. one of our primary aims is that our items have the longest lifespan possible.
integrity means that there is respect in the total life chain of a product. from the environmental impacts of the raw materials, manufacturing, retailing and freight. we consider that craftspeople can be paid fairly and that workers should have safe working conditions. we hope that planet has a positive impact on our society on as many levels as possible.
style has timelessness at its heart. we believe that an object can be original and that creativity does exist, is real and exciting!!!!
who we are, a brief history
planet can trace its origins back to melbourne in 1991 and it all began with ross longmuir’s intention to build furniture that was beautiful and made sense. in order to design well, an understanding of the advantages and limitations of materials and crafting processes was essential. at that stage there were no production furniture design courses in australia that encompassed solid timber. so self-education was pursued through workshops and study using books, magazines, short courses and lots of opinions from other designers and makers.
during this time a network developed of associations with other craft practitioners via workshops, exhibitions, support organisations and the camaraderie of trying something unknown. this background has resulted in a unique perspective in the creative equation. the process of hands-on crafting was intended to develop design education, so after six years, ross’s focus returned to purely furniture design, product development and presentation and he moved away from building the furniture himself.
planet relocated to sydney, and the first 35 square meter showroom opened in 1998. it made sense to support the work of friends by showing the work of other australian designer-makers in room settings, alongside planet’s timber furniture.
planet quickly emerged as the leading site for presentation of australian crafted items for the home and as the pioneer of solid australian timber production furniture. clients saw hand crafted pieces for the home set up in situ and collectable pieces suddenly had a context away from the white cube gallery. from that small beginning, planet has been embraced by australians and visitors alike. it has continued to grow, moving to larger premises on crown street in 2000 and now to our spacious 300 square meter commonwealth street showroom, where we can display our full range of furniture, and home-wares. as well as the launch in 2011 of this our online showroom is our next exciting expansion.
our furniture is simple, sustainable, streamlined and built to last. planet combines the unique resources of sustainably grown solid australian hardwoods with the tradition of highly skilled timber craftsmanship and is designed by ross longmuir. our mission is to strive for originality and a quality that makes sense of our australian context.
solid timber wears incredibly well, and can be restored easily. certified sustainably grown range timber from re-growth australian forests is used rather than old growth or rainforest timber. these timbers are famous for their amazing density and therefore durability. the very first act of european invaders as part of the first fleet in 1788 arriving at sydney cove, was to attempt to cut timber to create materials and to create clearing for the settlement. journal entries record that they decided that these timbers were simply useless for anything because in the age of hand tools, they were simply too hard to cut. for two hundred years, australian cabinetmakers shunned our eucalypts in favor of soft species such as cedar, and imported hardwoods. planet has pioneered local eucalypts for furniture production. in the current age, contemporary mechanization and technological advances in kiln drying, glues and lacquers, have enabled us to use eucalypts. great benefits for the end consumer in that the surfaces are incredibly durable and we also have superior sustainability.
the spotted gum that we use is approximately three times denser than many other hardwoods from elsewhere in the world. combining these characteristics with the best quality joinery and sealing finishes adds years to the lifespan of our products. spotted gum is grown from southern queensland to southern new south wales and comes in a range of colours and develops a beautiful rich depth of patina as it ages. many other materials are also used in our furniture such as metals, glass and upholstery materials.
our furniture design service
our design service includes special pieces to fit a specific function or aesthetic requirement. good design is appropriate to a location and lifestyle and end use, so please talk to us about your dreams, problems and needs. clients get our best work from a detailed brief that includes as much information as possible: about the space that the item will inhabit, the other existing materials in the space, the functional requirements and limitations that are relevant. generally visits to the space and the planet showroom may be required, however a lot can be done with the aid of digital technology such as a camera and email. from experience, it is important to remember that as the client, you only need to list your requirements and help document your space. you should not need to solve your own problem... our role as designers is to provide solutions for you.
please make an appointment to discuss your needs if possible in our showroom. on-site visits can also be arranged. alternatively, images of a space could be sent to us to work from. from this, some conceptual sketches would be developed for client review. then final working drawings would be developed and quotes established. the design process can happen over a few days or a few weeks, depending on availability of everyone involved and then it would be our standard current lead-time for construction.
please contact us for further information.
our home wares
following on from our design ethos, many other items for the home are presented at planet that fit our client’s needs and our core beliefs of natural fibers, style over fashion and quality crafting. we now represent over 70 makers working in a variety of mediums such as textiles, ceramics, glass, timber and recycled materials. increasingly the team at planet is designing and developing home ware pieces with makers in different mediums. our feeling is that if you choose a solid timber bed for example, you probably will relate to a latex mattress, pure linen sheets, an alpaca and wool quilt, a hand woven throw, a hand thrown porcelain lamp, a hand knotted wool and silk carpet, beeswax candles, a textile artwork… etc etc etc.
our ceramics and textiles artworks
many pieces are unique, beautifully crafted, and highly regarded and also encompass artistic philosophical perspectives. some of our artworks feature in public and private collections across australia and around the world. planet has launched the public careers of some of australia’s most highly regarded makers in their fields.