Art (27)
Media (16)
News (19)
Schools (17)
The Tree (10)
Wood (60)

Sylva Blog

The oneoak blog is part of the SYLVA Foundation blog which contains news about the organisation and all our initiatives.

Mailing List

Subscribe here to receive news from the blog every week in your email.

searching for "coffee table" returned 6 results:

6 posts. Go to page
Designer-Maker Jody Koomen has completed his making of a OneOak coffee table. It was made using Philip Koomen’s off cuts.
OneOak table by Jody Koomen

OneOak table by Jody Koomen, with his two year old daughter Maya

Talking about his work Jody explained:
“I decided on this table design because it is very minimal and can be made using a small amount of timber, which, in my case, was the key problem to overcome. I very much enjoyed working with this highly charactered oak and it was very satisfying to make the knots and splits a central feature of the table top. These defects or imperfections in wood are often regarded as inappropriate for fine furniture; however, to me they bring a piece of furniture to life and allow the personality of the tree to be revealed.
I originally designed this table as a dining table; however, I thought it would work equally well as a coffee table. To give you some indication of the size of this table I’ve included a picture of my two year old sitting at the table.”

Designer-Maker Jody Koomen has shared with us a model of the coffee table that he will be making using wood from the OneOak tree. He is using offcuts from his father Phil Koomen, also a Designer-Maker, so that very little usable wood is wasted. Read more about the Father & Son Designer-Makers

Jody Koomen coffee table model

A model of the coffee table to be made for the OneOak project by Jody Koomen

Master designer-maker Philip Koomen has played a significant part in the OneOak project: from guiding the sectioning of the tree after its felling, bringing partners and contacts to the project, advising on milling, grading the boards, and helping in the promotion and general steering of the project. Read more about Philip Koomen’s involvement in the OneOak Project.

In one of the last of a series of posts telling the stories of the OneOak makers and their OneOak products, we tell the story of Philip Koomen’s making of a stunning pedestal table.

One of the two OneOak boards marked ready for cutting

One of the two OneOak boards marked ready for cutting

Philip had the use of two boards from the OneOak tree. He kept all his offcuts and sent them to his son Jody, also a designer-maker.

the table top and model

The actual table top marked out and a model of the table. Notice how the figure has been matched to mirror itself.

Philip Koomen using a Veritas block place to smooth the octaganol pedestal

Philip Koomen at work using a Veritas block place to smooth the octaganol pedestal for the table. Designing the tapered octaganol pedestal was a mathematical feat aided greatly by Google Sketchup! Photo (c) Living Woods Magazine

The table compliments a chair that Philip designed recently as a speculative project. The table top has a diameter of 1.3m which is a little smaller than he would have liked but the availability of OneOak timber excluded anything larger. He says it does make it rather convenient in size as it now fits in an estate car! It has been finished with oils specifically to make it more robust as it travels with the OneOak touring exhibition over the next few months.

The OneOak pedestal table nears completion

The OneOak pedestal table, by Philip Koomen, nears completion. Photo (c) Living Woods Magazine

Philip’s table will be on display at Art in Action 19-22nd July. There it will join dozens of other items made from the OneOak tree, including a coffee table made by his son Jody.

Visit the website of Philip Koomen Furniture

A unique project following the full life story of a single oak tree reaches a finale this week, with the first of a series of manor exhibitions at Art in Action, where all the items made from the tree are being brought together for the first time. The products range from the waste sawdust used by legendary chef Raymond Blanc to smoke salmon, to a throne chair worth £6000, and dozens of other items including charcoal, wood block prints, tables, benches, door, house, boat, and woodchip for bioenergy.

  • The OneOak project is an environmental project of the Sylva Foundation, following the full life story of one oak tree.
  • The aim of the project is to bring people closer to the importance of our woodlands and of wood in modern society.
  • The 222 year old OneOak tree was felled on the Blenheim Estate in January 2010, witnessed by 250 school children. It had been grown in a plantation for its timber, having been planted in 1788; the same year that The Times was first published and when the French Revolution was just beginning to stir.
  • The OneOak tree is now the most studied oak tree in Britain: it has been weighed, measured with lasers to create a 3D model, studied by a dendrochronologist, and had its carbon content estimated.
  • It has been featured by dozens of artists, sculptors and photographers.
  • Many of Britain’s leading designer-makers have made items using the wood of the OneOak tree. These total over 40 different products, and counting.
  • The 250 children who witnessed the felling each planted a young oak tree in January 2011, one year after the tree was felled, to fulfil the cycle in sustainable forest management.
  • The first exhibition is at Art in Action, followed by six weeks at Blenheim Palace, then six weeks at Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh.


Chief Executive of the Sylva Foundation and project co-ordinator Dr Gabriel Hemery said “this has been an amazing project that has inspired both the public and those who make a living working with wood and caring for our woodlands. Everyone has given their time to the project in so many different ways because they have been inspired by the concept:- the realisation that trees and wood are still vital to life even in modern society.”

Dr Hemery continued “after three years of hard work it is immensely exciting to be bringing together all the various elements of the OneOak project for our exhibitions during the Summer and Autumn. We will be able to show the public the stunning artwork, spell-binding films, earth-shattering science, and the myriad of truly amazing wood-based products. The only products that we won’t be able include in real life in the exhibitions will be the house and the boat!”

The OneOak exhibition at Art in Action is replacing the usual ‘Woodworking’ section; the marquee will be filled uniquely with all the products of the OneOak tree. Artists, musicians, sculptors and designer-makers will be on-hand to talk and demonstrate about their work in the OneOak project. Some 25,000 people are expected to attend over the four days, and where special measures have been put in place to cope with the soggy ground.  See note from Art in Action

The following have been made to date: firewood, woodchip (to heat a house for 6 weeks), sawdust for smoking food by Raymond Blanc, charcoal, bracing beams for a house, transom beam in a boat rowed in the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Flotilla, door and frame, chest, pedestal table, coffee table, throne chair, clock, lantern, moebius sculpture, jewellery, acorn oakbot sculpture from waste slabwood, memorial sculpture, carved bowls, carved spoons, turned bowls, carvings, automata, commemorative garden bench by disabled workers, five benches for primary schools including the spider bench, contemplation bench, MakeIT! bench national school design competition, nesting tables, fine furniture competition winners pieces, small craft items, deer, viola chin rest, printing blocks, relief carving, sounding bowl.

Details of the OneOak products along with the stories of their making can be found here:

The project website is

Exhibition dates:

Art in Action, Waterperry                             19th – 22nd July 2012                      Art in Action

Blenheim Palace                                               25th July – 4th October                  OneOak at Blenheim Palace

Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh               12th October – 2nd December    Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh

More information

download the full News Release

download the full News Release

Download the full News Release


end of News Release

OneOak website

OneOak website

Over the last two and a half years, ever since the OneOak tree was felled in January 2010, we have been endeavoring to make as many and as varied items as possible from the tree to demonstrate how important trees and wood are to us in modern life.

Now that the first of our finale exhibitions is about to open (Art in Action July 19-22), we can list for the first time the number and variety of items made from the OneOak tree.

Here is a list of items made so far that exceeds 30 in number, while for some items there have been multiple versions (e.g. benches for five different schools) – the links point to stories on the OneOak blog over the last two and half years. See also our Products page on the OneOak website

  1. firewood from branchwood
  2. woodchip, from branchwood, for heating a house
  3. sawdust for smoking food, waste from processing other items
  4. charcoal
  5. bracing beams for a house
  6. transom beam in a boat, rowed in the Queens’ Diamond Jubilee Flotilla
  7. door and frame
  8. chest
  9. pedestal table
  10. coffee table
  11. throne chair
  12. clock
  13. lantern
  14. moebius sculpture
  15. jewellery
  16. acorn oakbot sculpture, from waste slabwood
  17. memorial sculpture, from branchwood
  18. carved bowls
  19. carved spoons
  20. turned bowls
  21. carvings
  22. automata
  23. Commemorative garden bench
  24. five benches for primary schools, including the spider bench
  25. contemplation bench
  26. MakeIT! bench, national school design competition
  27. nesting tables, fine furniture competition winner
  28. small craft items
  29. deer
  30. viola chin rest
  31. printing blocks
  32. relief carving
  33. sounding bowl

We will update this list in the future and include information on some of the items that so far have not been featured in the OneOak blog.

We hope to see at one of our exhibitions during 2012


6 posts. Go to page

Charity registered in
England and Wales 1128516
and in Scotland SC041892

Company limited by guarantee 06589157

Copyright © 2009-21 Sylva Foundation. All rights reserved.

Contact Us
Living Ash Project
Forestry Horizons

Sylva Foundation, Wood Centre, Little Wittenham Road, Long Wittenham, Oxfordshire, OX14 4QT    Tel: 01865 408018