The Willow Way Story

The Willow Way’s roots go back all the way to 1993 when I made my first willow chair in a workshop with Kate Lawes. Over the next five years, Kate and I opened and ran a store in downtown Nanaimo, attended many large and small shows, and hosted numerous willow furniture workshops. Many of the designs I use are traditional, coming from Kentucky by way of Pemberton, BC. Some are then updated with design ideas suggested by the materials themselves.

A natural progression

I grew up on a rural island and have always felt at home in the woods. A keen mountain biker, I am passionate about the outdoors and Vancouver Island. Many of my days are spent hunting for materials, foraging local species of willow and alder, and finding the best shoots and whips for each piece, which directs the creative construction.

From forest to finished product, the entire willow furniture process is an adventure and ever-evolving, which to me is the real beauty of this work. Most of the materials are natural and not milled, which means not one project is the same and it’s always a new experience.

I think people respond to my work because it is more than just your average rustic furniture – it is handmade with materials that are otherwise not utilized. My passion for nature and for the creative process comes through in each piece.

Andrew Kent

Working with Andrew exceeded our expectations. He created beautiful panels that are both aesthetically pleasing and functional. He was great to collaborate with – he provided ideas and feedback to our initial concept and together we arrived at the design.

Leanne and Dale
Gabriola Island

I had the pleasure of taking a chair making workshop from Andrew. I have to say, it was one of the most enjoyable and productive days I have ever spent.

Workshop Participant

We’ve had one of Andrew’s Classic Willow Armchairs and 2 of his Willow Coat Racks over 15 years and they’re still as solid and as beautiful as the day we got them.

Jay Clayton

Thank you for sharing your incredible artistic talent, we absolutely love our willow creations!

Dani & Christopher Thiele