West Coast Shoji Door

Custom Japanese Furniture

Materials and the creative process

Wood: Our wood of choice is Red Alder but we have access to all woods. Red Alder is the most plentiful hardwood on the Pacific Coast. It thrives in the low, moist conditions of the Pacific Northwest. Alder is a prolific, fast growing specie; strong & durable, light in weight. The grain is generally very straight, uniform in texture with little distinctive figuring. When freshly cut, alder is almost white, then it darkens to a mellow reddish brown after exposure to air. After kiln drying it becomes honey brown in colour. This wood glues, sands and finishes well and stains evenly. It’s a perfect wood for furniture, casework, woodenware, moulding and doors.

Paper: We import shoji paper from Warlon in Japan, their best quality, Tuff Top, cloud dragon pattern. This paper is 4 times stronger than traditional shoji paper.

Acrylic: We use 1mm and 2mm cloud dragon acrylic, imported from Warlon. Acrylic works well outdoors & in indoor moisture areas such as bathrooms and kitchens.

Stain: We use lacquer, water base stain, excellent quality from local manufacturers, applied by hand, on site. We offer many different stain options and where possible will try & colour match to your specifications.Every piece of wood is handpicked for colour and grain pattern. Each piece is inspected for warp and is seasoned to avoid the problems green wood can present. Our items are made with the utmost attention to detail; dovetail joinery; mortise & tenon half lap & woven kumiko; These processes give our furniture & doors strength & stability. The quality of the product will speak for itself. The experience of Tim & Dan makes all the difference; from perfectly working sliding doors to smooth gliding drawers in a Tansu chest or bathroom vanity. At shoji factories, this attention to detail just doesn’t exist and in many cases the quality of the workmanship & materials are lacking. Yes you pay more for custom doors and furniture, but the end product will last a lifetime and in the long run, be less expensive.