Time-honoured timber

Last Updated: 16 Jun 2015
Elizabeth Fabri

With origins dating back to Italy, third-generation business Timbacraft Furniture Company continues to use traditional furniture techniques to produce unique custom pieces that can be cherished for centuries to come.

It's not often you get a client so impressed with their dining table that they invite you to share a meal with them, but for Giovanni Iozzi of Timbacraft Furniture Company, it's just another day in the office. Founded 21 years ago in Perth
by Giovanni's father Vincenzo, Timbacraft has a background in furniture dating back long before the company's inception.

"My late grandfather and his two brothers made furniture in our home town of Bovalino in Calabria, the southernmost region of Italy," Giovanni says. "My grandfather emigrated to Australia in 1952, but because of his language difficulties he was unable to continue his trade.

"However, at an early age my father acquired a love for working with timber, and commenced his trade making fine furniture here in Perth. Later, he travelled to Italy to work and enhance his skills with his uncles, and also worked closely with them here upon their many extended visits, something I myself have had the privilege of doing."

At 17, after participating in many work-experience programs at school, Giovanni
decided to follow in his father's footsteps and join the furniture trade.

"Working in a family-run business really has given me a sense of pride and satisfaction over the years that is incomparable to anything in my life to date," he says.

As part of the family business, Giovanni makes everything from Georgian furniture to contemporary and modern pieces, all custom-made to order.

"Undoubtedly our point of difference is in our capacity to craft both built-in and freestanding furniture made from solid timber and timber veneers," he says. "Quality timber veneer work is rare nowadays, as the skills in matching grain, cutting and joining leaves, and then pressing onto substrate have been almost lost."

In a market where many businesses have been forced to streamline and automate their production techniques, Timbacraft still uses traditional methods of construction, a point of some pride. "Part of what makes our work so unique and special is largely the fact that ultimately we are able to deliver a product that is made completely from scratch, entirely by hand, using the techniques and the processes that have seen 300-year-old antiques still standing for us to marvel at today," says Giovanni, who also draws attention to the company's use of Australian wood.

"The structural integrity of Australian timbers generally surpasses most imported timbers," he says. "The quality of the timbers provides longevity of the furniture, which in turn provides greater value for money to the consumer."

Although Timbacraft has held onto its history, the business is continuing to look at ways to evolve, the current renovation of its Osborne Park showroom being just one example.

"In our newly renovated showroom we will be showcasing various furnishings, focusing more on our hand-laid veneers and solid timbers, showing prospective clients, architects, designers and builders the beauty and functionality of what we are able to deliver," says Giovanni. "The opening is scheduled for September this year, coinciding almost exactly with the business's 21st anniversary.

"In addition, part of the key to future success, for me, is really reliant on educating the consumer as to what's available and exactly what their money is purchasing them."

Giovanni also hopes Timbacraft Furniture becomes a fourth-generation business.
"There's nothing more I'd love than for my son to one day follow in the footsteps of the generations before him, and experience the closeness I had the good fortune of experiencing with my father and grandfather."

For more information, call Timbacraft on (08) 9446 4299, or visit timbacraftfurniture.com.au.


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