Introductions: Collaboration = Awesome desk named “Cirelai”

This is one of those posts that I have been dying to write for weeks! I am so glad to finally be putting into words what has been going on in my mind and behind the scenes at Knack for the past several weeks.

I believe in strong collaborations and have been wanting to collaborate with other artists for some time now….but I just did not know who/ what/ how needed to transpire in order to make all of that happen. Well, it hit me about 3 months ago. I knew exactly what I wanted to do, and  who I wanted to talk to. Once it all came together in my mind, the ideas flowed like milk and honey! {enter angelic music here} Thankfully, when I approached the special people of my choosing …they were just as excited about my crazy ideas and immediately came on board!

I chose the first artist {yes, there are more to come! yay!} because I absolutely love his work….but even more importantly I love who he is as a human being. I get to interact with both Eric Benjamin and his awesome wife Bekki on a regular basis, and I am really proud to connect myself with these two wonderful people.

It was really important to me that I not dictate what any of the artists that I collaborate with, create on my pieces….. so with just a few basic thoughts about direction we were off and running!

This desk is a collaboration between Eric Benjamin and I, and here is the run down of how it all came to pass:

> I painted the base color, which I decided to do navy because I like navy. {This mind you is a decision that I did not run by Eric because we wanted it to be really organic as far as how the design played out}

> I took it to Eric’s studio and dropped it off….with no instructions except “Do your thing, and bring it back to me for the finish”…….and boy did he ever “do his thing!” WOWSA!

> Once the desk came back to me, {and I picked my jaw up off the floor! So gorgeous with its forest of trees!} I sanded, stained, and put my finishing touches on the desk.

I can’t say enough about how stoked I am with the design and finish of this piece, and I am thrilled with this venture into the collaboration world. So thrilled….that we did another piece together, which I will show you as soon as it is photographed……and then I teamed up with another artist who I will introduce you to next week! This is not the end of the collaborations…..there are two more artists in the works…..and the designs are going to be so wonderful I can hardly stand it.

All of these pieces are available for sale in the Knack showroom located at 11 Lois Ave. ,Greenville, SC 29611 and in the Knack Etsy shop!

Hang on tight folks…….things are gettin’ good around here!



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  1. Oh. Em. Gee. There are no words to do this piece justice!!!
    Love, love, love it!! And I’m so happy there’s more to come…although the bar is now set waaaay high;)

    • Barb Blair

      Courtney…..Thank you! No saving the best for last around here! hah! We believe in dynamic starts and starting off with a bang! You are so right about the bar being high….these guys are so talented!

  2. WOWSA is right! That was totally unexpected…but, after visiting Eric’s studio, I totally understand! Hooray for collaboration!

    • Barb Blair

      Thank you Jenny! Eric is super talented and very aware of color and shape… his work and feel so blessed to be able to work alongside these guys! xo

  3. This is spectacular Barb! A show stopper, a jaw dropper and wowsa for sure. So glad you weren’t afraid to do something outside the box! It’s gorgeous….someone is going to have a super piece of art when they buy this. Good for you!

    • Barb Blair

      Kelly…..thank you so much for these super kind words! I sure wish I could take it home with me …but know that it will be a great piece for someone! xo

  4. kristen

    oh my, i have to say that this has to be my most favorite piece!

    • Barb Blair

      kristen, thanks so much! that is awesome!

  5. Anna

    You never cease to amaze me.

    • Barb Blair

      Anna…..oh man……thank you! xo

  6. hihi, WOWSA is great….like the desk is! great work! I really like it! 🙂

    • Barb Blair

      Geisslein, Thank you so much!

  7. Jessica

    I’m in LOVE with this! Great collaboration!

    • Barb Blair

      Thank you so much Jessica!

  8. I did an out loud gasp! This is the coolest desk I have EVER seen! I have done desks that look like this only in shape. Oh I am so in love. Cannot wait to see what is next.

    • Barb Blair

      karen…….thanks pal! I am so glad you love it that much! It has been so fun to collaborate on these pieces with friends….and I am really excited about much more to come!

  9. bobbi

    That is seriously beautiful, Barb – and as always – you are pushing that envelope again! GREAT work and great idea.

    • Barb Blair

      bobbi…..thank you so much! I always want to “push the envelope”….so I am so glad to hear that! :}

  10. What a fantastic idea and an amazing outcome from the collaboration! Can’t wait to see the others 🙂

    • Barb Blair

      Thank you so much Ollie!

  11. Linda

    This piece is amazing, I like a LOT :o)

    • Barb Blair

      Linda, thank you so much! :}

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