Wabi Sabi Style: The Provincial Collection
For the first time in its 20-year history, PAGODA RED is launching its own wabi sabi furniture collection. Designed by founder and creative director Betsy Nathan, these artisan-made pieces are crafted from centuries-old reclaimed elm wood. Made from ancient materials by modern hands, the Provincial Collection embodies a new generation of heirlooms.
A Lifetime of Learning
Living in Beijing in the 1990s, Betsy Nathan apprenticed under Chinese furniture experts and began acquiring antiques. In 1997, she returned to the United States to establish PAGODA RED, a destination for handmade, one-of-a-kind works. Informed by decades of looking, learning and building relationships with artisans around the world, she launched the PAGODA RED COLLECTION in 2019.
Wabi Sabi Woods
Wabi speaks to the quirks and flaws that bring a unique spirit to an object, while Sabi is the graceful beauty that comes with age. Crafted from wood collected over many years, the Provincial Collection brings together reclaimed Chinese elm wood, dovetail joinery and minimal forms. Transcending centuries and cultures, each piece communicates the beauty of craft. Through the texture of time, it’s clear how perfect the imperfect can be.
Because these tables are made to order by our craftspeople, they can be customized to your specific dimensions. Designs include courtyard stools & console tables, benches, and waterfall tables or just about anything you can imagine. Left in its natural state of texture and patina or softened, sanded & stained (we will try our best to match your color sample), finishes are limitless!
Clean lines highlight every knot, split, cavity, and color variation in these expressive wood planks. Each piece is a celebration of wabi sabi style. This Reclaimed Elm Courtyard Stool hearkens back to ancient stools that would have been moved around a provincial courtyard home for impromptu meals or gatherings.
From 18th to 21st Century
An example of how this collection connects old and new, the Provincial Reclaimed Elm Bench honors wood salvaged from 18th-century Chinese buildings. Our craftspeople use clean lines, minimal ornamentation, and traditional mortise-and-tenon joinery to highlight the wood’s expressive grain and raw texture.
Provincial Past & Present
Much like the tables that provincial Chinese families would have used for their home altars, this Reclaimed Elm Courtyard Console Table is simple and portable. Rich history deepens the rustic aesthetic by bringing new life to aged wood. Likewise, the simplicity of the style feels equally at home in modern, coastal, contemporary, and farmhouse interiors.
Worn Wood Tables
In a generous 78-inch-long length, this simple Reclaimed Elm Waterfall Table exemplifies the quiet dignity that natural materials can accumulate over time. Said to be a superior hardwood, elm is resistant to splitting and develops a rich patina as it ages. In China, elm wood symbolizes inner strength and intuition.
Create Your Custom Piece
In true wabi-sabi tradition, we work with you to personalize each piece. Call us at 888-878-8628 to discuss your custom project.