Charleston Style and Design

FALL 2015

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242 CS D Cauthen often recounts that he "decided to make a table one day," it's a little more complicat- ed than that. Design and preser- vation are a family tradition. Cauthen's late father, Henry F. Cauthen, was a well-known Charleston antiques dealer, the longest sitting director of the Charleston Preservation Society and the original author of the book Charleston Interiors, among many other design achievements. When Cauthen decided to use antique reclaimed wood from his grandmother's barn to build a table, it was with the knowledge of an experienced builder and someone who has been in the antiques business since he was 16. His roots run deep in Charleston, and his tables are one way to honor that past. "My father left a personal legacy of 'I made a difference in Charleston.' I also want to make a difference in that respect," he says. Since we last spoke to Cauthen, he's moved from James Island to downtown Charleston and expanded his workshop, where he continues to make his popular console tables, kitchen islands, and gun and rod stands. Cauthen loves collaborating with others— clients, designers, decorators, builders—to create custom pieces. "I've got you and the details for your space in my mind when I make the table," he says. Clients can choose Charleston-sourced wood, Lowcountry wood or Carolina wood for a certain sense of place. Cauthen is fascinated when working with old wood because, LANDRUM TABLES 575 1/2 Meeting St. Charleston, SC 29403 843-764-9091 Tori Coscas is a freelance writer based in Charleston. he says: "The wood isn't con- sistent. You can build the same table over and over. It's always a different table." That sense of respect for and pride in his craft undoubtedly landed him his lat- est accolade: Cauthen is one of a handful of Lowcountry artisans and one of only 28 in the state to be featured in the South Carolina State Museum's Carolina Makers exhibit, which runs until February 2016. The exhibit celebrates individual South Carolina crafters who make exceptional products by hand or by using a traditional method. He humbly credits others for his success: "All my friends, designers, architects and developers who have used my services—I thank them. I could build tables forever, but without support from the community, it would be meaningless." Cauthen's latest collaborations include a retail display for the clothing store M. Dumas & Sons, built under the guidance of architect Reggie Gibson, and custom shelving out of old Charleston wood for the Charleston Preservation Society. When asked if things are going according to plan for Landrum Tables, Cauthen says: "There was zero plan. I built a table; somebody said, 'Build another one.' ... and I haven't looked back." 2

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