Reclaimed Heritage: The Story of 2nd Story Wood Company

2nd Story Wood Company
2nd Story Wood Company

Wood speaks a language all its own. Within the grain lies a history some find a curiosity.  Small scars, one on top of the other, mark growth spurts of children now grown; handmade nails hammered deep into 100-year-old pine siding still hold despite the building’s threat of falling; wood, shiny and smooth, is worn from repeated use and constant care; sections may be partially charred by fire, and you might even find an occasional round left by skirmishes of war.  The wood is talking, and 2nd Story Wood Company is listening. 
Scott Miller and his father, Carl, did not intentionally start the 2nd Story Wood Company.  The company began from a need. Scott and his wife were looking for a dining room table.  They wanted something different and unique, a table that was sleek and modern.  It was logical for Scott to ask his father for help since he is both a woodworker and welder.  
Reclaiming old wood is a passion of theirs, and so they went on the hunt.  Carl and Scott located an over 100-year-old abandoned bungalow made from hard pine in an area that once housed a lot of old mill homes.   Using the reclaimed wood and adding an industrial feel in raw steel as table legs, Scott and Carl created something beautiful while paying homage to the neighborhood’s past.  Those they knew fell in love with the table and suggested father and son go into business, hence 2nd Story Wood Company was born.
The idea of using reclaimed wood is an important aspect of the business.  “By committing to the wood’s history,” explains Scott and Carl, “we are preserving heritage in every piece we make. Character comes with time and rather than discard these treasured pieces, we reclaim their history and rework the wood creating its second story….The beauty in the wood is the imperfections. They are like beauty marks to be showcased.”
2nd Story Wood Company is run on a part-time basis.  Scott, who is 34, has a business degree and enjoys being an entrepreneur.  His title is Chief Wood Retainer.  When he’s not working at the shop, he’s working for an urban church called Watershed.  Carl, who is 66, grew up on a farm.  He was a welder in the military and worked for a steel company in Winston-Salem as a foreman.  His title is Chief Woodworker and Welder.  Both men use their passions and gifts to make custom-made furniture others will love.  
Raw steel is used for the frames.  The reclaimed wood is found in the Carolinas, mostly weathered oak and heart-pine beams.  “We use 2-3 companies in the Carolinas that specialize in reclaiming old buildings and barns,” say Scott.  Normal wood working techniques are used in the construction process.  “We can create pretty much anything: coffee tables, side tables, kitchen tables…. Our specialty is creating custom furniture pieces for our customers, and we encourage customers to get an idea from our products. We love it when a customer can have a piece in his or her home that only they have.”
The creative process is one that combines the ideas of the customers with the concepts Scott and Carl feel will work best with their design. It’s important that they preserve the wood’s heritage and history.  “We make sure our customers understand the different options when choosing the wood, finish, and final use.  We create pieces that exhibit great design, but it’s crucial that we deliver practical working pieces too,” says Scott.  “We don’t take short cuts; our pieces are crafted outside of the box with wood that’s locally and ethically sourced.”  
Last year, New Balance’s Head Store Designer contacted 2nd Story Wood Company in order to purchase several pieces for the opening of their flagship experience store in Boston.  “It was incredible.  To know that you can go to a city like Boston with such a rich history and see something you made.  It’s pretty neat,” says Scott and Carl.  “New Balance has been one of our favorite customers.  They believe in American-made products, and they believe in supporting small businesses.”  
Scott and Carl have also worked on projects for the South Park Whole Foods location.  “We built tables out of a cork material for a wine loft they have, and we also built a wine bar where you can sit and have a drink.  It’s neat to be able to go grab a glass of wine with your friends and sit at the very table you built,” explains Scott.
Father and Son are proud of their work and rightfully so.  They go to great lengths to reclaim past histories while helping to create new ones.  For the 2nd Story Wood Company, history is still in the making.   For further information on 2nd Story Wood Company or to inquire about a custom piece of furniture, visit their website at www.2ndstorywood.com or email them at scott@2ndstorywood.com.