The design concept and original intention of “Long Use” and “Explore environment-friendly and high-quality furniture materials and accessories” have been the consistent pursuit and persistence of Mr. Li Sien, a brilliant designer and founder of a wood furniture brand. Li knows that the quality of raw materials is one of the key factors that directly determine the final quality of a work.
By chance during a study, Li was introduced to the concept of recycled forest, which coincided with his design philosophy, and American hardwood naturally became his favorite material. Of course, American hardwood also lived up to expectations, playing a significant role in Li’s creations for more than a decade.
The encounter between Li and American hardwood is undoubtedly like a warrior finding a sword and both complementing each other. Li has fully displayed the characteristics of American hardwood through his creations, and American hardwood has helped him come up with one excellent wood work after another.
Creation Comes from Love
“From Chinese wooden buildings, with a more than 1,400-year history, to Japanese wooden towers and temples built hundreds of years ago, the continuation of human destiny is closely related to wood,” Li Sien said. “Chinese furniture manufacturing itself has a deep tradition. My choice of wood is not only based on the characteristics of the material, such as nature, environmental protection, wood fragrance, and texture, but because I’ve always loved wood.”
Talking about the charm of American hardwood in his furniture designs, Li said: “From the color point of view, they have their own richness and wide application. Various properties make them competent for use in making most furniture products. Moreover, each kind of wood has its own scent. For instance the dark walnut, which has a deep smell, and the red oak, which has a smell of sunshine, because they are bathed in North American forests and constantly absorb sunlight.”
As far as Li is concerned, he prefers to let the wood speak for itself in the design, removing artificial carving and excessive curves, so that the characteristics of the wood can be brought into full play.
Follow the Concept of Sustainability and Fit in with American Hardwood
Before creating a work, a designer will inevitably “rush for gold in the sand” – looking for suitable raw materials is naturally unavoidable. Asked why he chose American hardwood, Li explained: “In 2009, before I set foot in furniture production, I wanted to find a more environment-friendly wood. Later I learned about the use of renewable forests, understanding that American hardwood comes from sustainable forests. I thought it was great.”
The availability and characteristics of American hardwood vary from place to place, but the growth rate of each species of American hardwood is much faster than the rate of harvesting. Few other countries have achieved such great success in the sustainability of hardwood forests as the United States – a key point about American hardwood forest that impressed Li.
After learning about the grading rules and price transparency of American hardwood, Li found a purchase channel in China. For the first time, he bought about eight cubic meters of red oak. Over the next ten years of creation, he forged a close relationship with American hardwood.
Make Simple Materials not Simple
Talking about the conflicts between simple raw materials and simple design concepts, Li said that natural materials are both simple and very rich, just like every leaf looks alike because of the logic and characteristics of its composition, but in fact no two leaves are exactly the same.
“MUMO has always pursued the beauty of nature, so that natural lines can produce some visual changes through the rational use of color,” explained Li, who often uses mixed design styles, such as the combination of black walnut and red oak, to produce a visual impact.
As a wood lover, Li feels that artificiality can sometimes conceal the warm and natural feeling contained in wood, such as excessive decoration and paint that can conceal the natural touch and wood grain. Looking at the production side, Li thinks that the organic beauty produced by imprecision and artificial non-mechanical standards can bring more warmth to consumers with regards to the inconsistency of wood.
“From a design perspective, if you really like it, let it talk,” is Li’s philosophy and he has never stopped his exploration of wood. In order to make wood more effective and ecologically friendly, he proposed the concept of “making the best use of wood”.
“Because the production process of furniture generates a lot of small wooden blocks and sawdust, we process the small wooden blocks into ornaments. The use of sawdust as a dye to produce clothing is a good method of practicing environmental protection. We will continue to explore the reasonable use of wood, and how to make more use of wood in life and space, so that consumers can get a good and long-term experience.”
Selection of Design Works
Material: American Red Oak + Walnut
“It feels like dad made it, a toy that can be used for a long time. An object that carries the warmth and love of childhood and parents. They are hand-made with exquisite oak and black walnut, and the borders are connected by butterfly tenons. They are a gift for toddlers and young people with a childlike heart.”
Studio Furniture series · Coat rack
Material: American Red Oak + Cherry
“Paying attention to the beauty of proportions and abandoning complicated design, the shape is simpler. Pay attention to details, it will take a long time to see”
Studio Furniture series · Glass cabinets
Material: American Red Oak
“Like a collector, show your work, express your achievements and preferences.”
Studio furniture series · Drawer combination cabinet
Material: American Red Oak / Cherry
“The handle groove is made directly on the panel, without interfering with other materials, to maintain the overall unity, more drawers allow tools and objects to be summarized and where to go, and order brings peace.”
Studio Furniture series · 18 small suction cabinets
Material: American Red Oak
“Eighteen cabinets of the same size and specifications have super storage capacity, which can be broken into pieces, get rid of mess, and return to the rhythm of order.”
Studio Furniture series · Drawing table
Material: American Red Oak
“Sitting at this table with a classic industrial atmosphere, you can become a romantic artist or a rigorous draftsman. Whether it is a flat office, inclined reading, or drawing and creation, you cannot be restricted.”
One egg and one ball
Material: American Cherry/Walnut
“There is no need to carve, just the wood as it is, but the Creator gives it a unique quality.”
Li Sien profile: Born in 1980, he made his furniture foray in 2010, and founded the brand MUMO in 2011. His first big opportunity came by chance. A friend could not find suitable furniture in the space designed by him, so Li helped to redesign it. After that, he received many customized orders from his friends and gradually developed his own brand. The purpose of his furniture brand is to design and create with the mentality of “making furniture for yourself”. Over the past few years, Li has led MUMO to produce a series of hardwood furniture with a sense of design, and has gained a formidable reputation. MUMO has also become a leader in the domestic hardwood furniture industry.