We’ve gotten a chance to do some fun work lately — curved handrail, walnut tables in the style of Nakashima — but it seems that the formula for getting good press is staining some plywood bright blue.

My friend David Doyle, longtime owner of the bookstore Rhythm and Muse, called me recently about making a table and drink rails for his new tapas restaurant cum vinyl haven Tres Gatos (a reference to beloved family members, not menu items…).  The goal was to make a big impact on a light budget, and Dave fell in love with an intense blue stain from Trans Tint.

The stain, plus shellac and a UV-blocking top coat from Target Coatings gave us what we were hoping for:


The funny part came a few days later when I got a call from a reporter with the Jamaica Plain Gazette.  She told me that I was a local “artisan” who had been “commissioned” to build a “great table” and wanted to interview me about the experience.  It took me a moment believe that I wasn’t being put on, but then I rolled with it, with the following results:

“My wife Mari and I began thinking about adding a tapas restaurant almost five years ago, partly because we love Spanish tapas and wine and because we believe there is strong demand for such a place in the neighborhood,” Doyle said.

A centerpiece of the dining room will be a large communal table that has been commissioned from local artisan Milton Trimitsis. The eight-seat table will seat large parties or groups of smaller parties.

“It’s a chance for people to get to know each other that would normally not sit together,” Doyle said. “Plus, it’s really great to have work done by a local guy.”

“It’s very exciting to have a small role to play in the restaurant,” Trimitsis said. “And it sounds like a fun way to have dinner.”

– Rebecca Oliveira for the JP Gazette, 7 January 2011

So if plywood-and-primary-colors is what it takes to make it in the new media landscape, we’ve got it sewn up…

I finally got a chance to have a meal at Tres Gatos last weekend, and got a photo of our press-friendly table in action.

Blue table in use


Wonderful food, by the way.  Thanks, Dave.