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The Definitive Blog for Fine Furniture & Design

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A Room with a Cue

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There is an old adage that hard work has its rewards. Our handcrafted furnishings definitely bring us immense personal satisfaction but it’s always an extra boost when we are recognized for our quality from sources other than within. We just learned that our Thomas Moser room at the Harraseeket Inn has received the Editors’ Choice Award for Best Designer Room in Maine by Yankee Magazine! Not only is our furniture ensconced in the room, we had the opportunity to decorate the space as well.
Here’s what the editorial team at the magazine had to say: "For fans of Shaker-inspired furniture, staying in the Harraseeket's chic Thomas Moser Room is a treat. This oversized space, decorated by Moser's team, blends traditional and contemporary designs accented with works by Maine artists." Now, that's what we call a referral!

There's Just Something About Maine...

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“We fell in love with Maine during our second honeymoon,” says Tom Moser. “So much in life is historical accident!” The Thos. Moser story, in fact, swims with historical accidents of sorts—memories of the jagged coastline of the upper reaches of the continental U.S. calling a young couple back to its frothing waters and woods, a woodworking tradition in Maine serving as an inspiration for Tom’s aspirations, and the last extant shaker village near where the couple decided to settle drawing Tom again and again as he studied the fine craftsmanship that he held in the highest esteem. 

“I was a first generation American—my mom was German and my father was Austrian—both settled in Milwaukee,” Tom explains. “I met Mary in high school and we knew we wanted to leave because the suburban culture was all about acquisition. Fashion has a life cycle of a season and we didn’t agree with what we were seeing. We left when we were 18, and once we had visited Maine, we discovered the Northeastern values and felt very much at home with them.”

Everyone who flocks to the state in the winter to snow ski or in the summer to enjoy our dramatic coastline sees what’s the most obvious to everyone about why we love being a part of this great state. I guess it’s one of Maine’s best-kept little secrets that the true depth of our love for where we live—the beautiful snow-packed mountains and craggy coastline notwithstanding—is its artisanal heart!

Everything is Dreamed First

Mary RGB resized 600One of the most remarkable aspects of our history as a company is the fact that we were, quite literally, dreamed into being. In 1972, Tom left his position as a professor at Bates College to spend his time making one-of-a-kind furniture in an old Grange Hall in New Gloucester, Maine. His wife Mary managed sales and finances, and their four sons began training as young apprentices. There was no business plan, no product, no sense of marketing, and, to their banker’s horror, no cash or cash flow.

Tom was a practical dreamer who saw what he wanted to achieve and set out to do it. Why Maine? “The Shakers and the rural craftsmen of Maine had a profound affect on Mary and myself in terms of aesthetics and values,” he explains. “We fell in love with the state during our second honeymoon. I guess in this way so much in life is historical accident!” As is evident from Tom’s early designs, he developed a fascination with the work of Maine’s Shaker furniture makers, who lived in the last extant Shaker village in the country on 22,000 acres of land that encompass the entire western shore of Sabbathday Lake. He also saw the potential of being able to practice his craftsmanship in an environment that fostered artisinal creativity. “Every small town in Maine has a woodworker and that idea appealed to me greatly.”
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From those far-off and idealistic beginnings, we have grown into a deeply rooted and diverse company, known worldwide for our unfailing commitment to the ideals upon which we were founded, with a cadre of skilled artisans carrying Tom's visions forward into the future, and "living the dream."

The post title, Everything is Dreamed First, is a line from Gaston Bachelard’s book The Poetics of Reverie. It captured our attention because the philosopher wrote, “…creative reverie animates the nerves of the future…”. We’re indebted here at Thos. Moser for such imaginative beginnings: the philosophy behind that genesis continues to inspire us today.
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