Big Garden Furniture in Woolgoolga has been building furniture on the Coffs Coast since 1996. FOCUS tracked down one of their repeat clients, Chris, to see some of the amazing custom made furniture Gareth has designed for him and to ask him about his experience with Big Garden Furniture.
Firstly, what made you choose to go to Big Garden Furniture to purchase your furniture?
I was renovating my house and consequently I was also searching for new furniture, both inside and outside for the garden. Naturally I used Google, and through it I found Big Garden Furniture in Woolgoolga. I went to their shop to have a look, expecting to hopefully find something suitable for my backyard. Instead, my eye immediately caught a large, magnificent Red River Gum dining table made from a single slab of what must have been once upon a time a very majestic tree. It included 10 matching chairs – a truly one off masterpiece, crafted by both nature and human hand perfectly.
The lady in the shop was very friendly and helpful, and later I found out that it was Gareth’s charming wife, Lisa. Once the table was delivered, I asked whether they would be willing to do commission work also. They are, and one thing led to another. About 15 other pieces so far, and I still harbour a couple of further thoughts!
Some were quite tricky, like the piece that I wanted made to hide the TV when not in use. My TV is wall mounted, and the piece consists of a beautiful Tasmanian Blackwood frame and lid with a favoured painting inserted into the lid. The lid has gas powered struts, which allow lifting of it with no physical strength.
But as the wood and painting are quite heavy, the struts had to be upgraded to heavier duty ones twice. This in turn required the careful taking down and returning to the workshop of the whole piece. More hours, more work for Gareth, and the costly replacement of the struts – but he did it all in his stride, and at no extra cost to me.
Similarly, some pieces were hampered by not perfectly plumb walls or varying skirting boards, or simply by my at times slightly complicated ideas!
How many pieces of furniture have you purchased from Big Garden Furniture?
This is not that easy to answer, as several pieces consist of several units. Gareth and his team built me a walk-in wardrobe, for example. It consists of cupboards, drawer units, hanging units and mirrors – is that one or several pieces? At present I have approximately 16 pieces, but I still want some more.
What is your favourite piece of furniture and why?
I love them all, but the table is possibly the most dramatic – the Red River Gum is singularly spectacular.
What is the most important thing one should consider when purchasing custom made furniture?
It seems to me only two things are important. Do you love it, and is it well built! The first should be easily achieved by Gareth and his team, and the second is definitely achieved by them.
Are there any more pieces of furniture you have in the pipeline for Big Garden Furniture to make for you?
Yes, I have a few thoughts – but one thing after another!
Describe your relationship with Gareth, after purchasing these items from him?
Well, it is obviously an ongoing, very good relationship.
If it weren’t, I wouldn’t recommend him – let alone as wholeheartedly as I do.
Share some expert advice on BGF for our readers?
Explain to Gareth clearly what you are seeking, the feeling and look that you wish to create, and he will deliver!
If you want to see some of the furniture that Big Garden Furniture create, visit their showroom.
The showroom is open 9am – 3pm, Mon – Sat, at 1852 Solitary Islands Way, Woolgoolga (old Pacific Hwy).
Alternatively, if you want to discuss a custom piece, give Gareth a call on 0417 205 807.