It’s been far too long since we’ve posted from our driftwood world here in Maine…and while Michael has been busy designing and building new works, he’s also been busy with commissions…a few of which are pictured here.

Sea Bubble

This set of three are titled, Sea Bubbles. They were designed to compliment another assemblage (below), titled, Points to Sea, previously made to be exhibited in an upcoming show, though Points to Sea will never make it to the show, because it’s already been purchased.

Here it is installed in its’ new home;


Points To Sea


It’s an assemblage created from Maine collected driftwood and mussel shells with a custom stainless frame surrounding and within…it looks incredible in its’ new home…

The other commission was to create a set of three side stump tables, also made from Maine collected driftwood. This set is the perfect compliment to this space. Don’t you agree?

More to come soon…

Side Tables


October 1, 2013

The leaves are changing, fall is here and the past two weeks have been filled with scouting…scouting for driftwood…

I’ve been checking out various areas in Northern and Western Maine and it has been absolutely beautiful – albeit the colder temperatures being blown in with gusto…

Dark skies made for dark waters…

dark and blustery

cold days and nights…

Evenings were spent camping at various camp sites and days were spent driving down logging roads which felt (and sounded) as if they had been covered with boulders. Boulders of all shapes and sizes…so rough in fact that on the day before I was to head home, an unfortunate large bump sent my trailer ‘over the edge’ – no, not over a cliff, but over the edge of structural limitations. The trailer snapped in two.

Uh, oh…

No one is around.

Time to think. Rig it enough to get to town and get it repaired – hopefully.

Check the phone for any reception – one bar, phew…most of the week it said,  ‘no service available’…

home while away...

I called where I had camped the night before – luckily, the owner, knew a welder. A good welder.

Now, I just had to get there.

It took me three hours to go only a few miles…but I made it.

we made it

up goes the trailer

The welder was better than good – he was a magician…he suggested I drive only on paved surfaces, at least until I get the boat off the trailer…

I had other plans. I still had one more spot to scout. He looked on with disbelief when he saw me pull out and turn left, instead right…

I was glad I did because I came across two more table bases and a beautiful view.

boat on shore

trimming found stump

new find


What a trip it was…

my biggest fan

April 30, 2013

So while I posted last week about the new piece – Spring Tide III, this week will be more about the person taking the photos (as well as more photos of this most recent piece), than about the piece itself.

My business and life partner, Jennifer is always taking photographs, whether it’s of our son, our home, life, her garden, food or my work – it seems our life is always being documented photographed…

While I tease her about the fact that the camera is always out and being used, I’m also grateful for her love of the camera (and the time she dedicates to editing, etc.), as I don’t share the same passion for it as she does.

If it wasn’t for her and her camera I wouldn’t have any of these beautiful photos…or this blog…

Thank you Jenn.

1.working2.sticks in bucketspring time III in progress4.3:4 assembled5.close-up6.nearly complete

While I’ve been absent these past few weeks (from here), my mind has been consumed with new projects, new places and the wondering of where does the time go? March is nearing its’ end and while that means warmer weather is all the more closer, it also means the business of summer is only a short time away…shows, wood collecting, busy beaches and summer visitors! So much to look forward to and so much to do.

A new shop, K * collette, in Portland Maine, has inquired about carrying a piece or two – this is a very exciting prospect as we do not (yet, that is) have a retail connection in Maine and this shop seems to be a very good match…we’ll see what comes of it…

Down East Magazine has included our coffee tables in their April issue, under the title of ‘Things you must have for your beach house’ – while it’s not on newsstands yet, subscribers have already received their issue and inquiries are coming in – always a good sign!

And last week we attended the Architectural Digest Show in NYC – we wanted to check it out and see if it would be a good show to participate in – and it most certainly would be! The exhibitors (artists) we spoke with were not only talented, they were friendly, helpful and very encouraging…because when you are planning on investing not only a lot of money, but a lot of time into a show, you want to be surrounded by like-minded others as well as surrounded by interested and serious buyers – both of which we experienced while visiting the show. This show is now on our ‘goals’ list for next year.

This year we are exhibiting in the Maine Craft Guild on Mount Desert Island in late July – last year was a great success and many fabulous connections (and friendships) were made so we submitted to the jury earlier this year and we were accepted!

Time is fleeting and good planning is necessary when working for oneself in an art based business…so while I may have been absent from this space, I’ve not stopped thinking or planning for the future of Designs Adrift…

What would you like to see made from driftwood?

Maine in February

February 19, 2013

I’ve finished my commissions, though still have one more on order…and have been out searching for new finds – tomorrow actually I need to enlist the help of some friends to help me heave ho a new (enormous) piece which will make for a spectacular coffee table…though while out looking Jenn took a few photos – enjoy…crushed shellssand covered treerunning waterseaweedthere is still snow on the ground and the water is frigid, but spring is on its way…and then summer!! 


December 24, 2012

Happy day to everyone – may peace, joy and fulfillment surround you all year!

Get outside, laugh and enjoy today…peace to you and yours…

Bike is Complete

November 13, 2012

The unusual request for a driftwood bike had me wondering in the beginning…though I was up for the challenge and I am so glad I accepted it. The commission and the challenge.

It’s roughly 3′ X 3′ and made entirely of driftwood…

It was a project many were surprised by – “A driftwood bike? – really?” My reply would be yes – it’s more than a bike, it represents one man’s love for cycling and life, his life

Next step with this project is to pick up the custom boxes, pack with care and then send off…

I couldn’t have done it without my helper, always at my side, always willing to assist…

Next project…3′ standing horse…


November 6, 2012

Elephants are magnificent, to say the least. They are not an animal one hears about often, particularly here, in Maine, though recently I’ve come across an artist who talks about elephants all the time – he even builds them – sometimes even out of driftwood. His name is Andries Botha and he is from South Africa. He creates lifelike and life size elephants from driftwood as well as recycled tires, steel and mesh (to name a few materials he works with). His artwork is not only made for the sake of making art, it’s also made to spread a message – one concerning the environment and the children of Southern Africa. I spent over five months traveling throughout South Africa in 2001 – it is an incredibly diverse and stunning country. Simply amazing to say the least. Though, the dark side of all this beauty, is poverty and homelessness, particularly, young children. I saw it myself – I experienced it myself. You can’t escape it. Andries Botha creates art for these children. He started, The Human Elephant Foundation for these children as well as for all beings of nature, including the earth itself. He says, “The elephant is a metaphor for the yearning for forgotten conversations between humans, the earth and living things.”
Andries’ work is incredibly moving not only for the work itself, but for what it represents.

This photo was part of the 2006 installation titled, You Can Buy My Heart and My Soul as a part of the Beautfort’s second Triennial of Contemporary Art by the Sea. Definitely check out his work as well as his foundations – he speaks for all of us.

Art as Love

October 9, 2012

I am about to begin a driftwood bike for a client who has commissioned me to do so…it is a gift for her husband, a man who is an athlete, an ironman and an avid biker. He has been diagnosed with Leukemia. AML to be more exact – acute myeloid leukemia. He’s undergone chemotherapy and is in remission…he is also a father.

I am honored when individuals contact me to create such special pieces – pieces which will be passed down and remembered for more than what they are…

They are not just pieces of driftwood assembled – they are representations of the person they are made for.

I thank each person who I have worked with for allowing me the opportunity to become a part of their lives.

Art as love. Forever in our hearts…


September 18, 2012

I’ve had a good, yet intense past few days recently – I’ve just returned from a trip up north. I had packed my truck with supplies, maps and canoe and off I went, in search of driftwood…



I found some incredibly beautiful and pristine areas. The weather was very crisp (and cold – should have brought more wool blankets!) clear and calm. I mention calm because of my means of transportation – a canoe. I mean, I needed my truck to get me to these places, but then I needed a boat to get me around the lakes. These aren’t your average small lakes, no, these are enormous and definite care needs to be taken when traveling (by canoe), alone.


There is no cell service, no one else around for miles and the winds can (and do) kick up unexpectedly. But all the driving and searching was worth it!  I feel I should mention, these roads aren’t your average, well groomed roads either – no they are logging roads. It reminded me of being in parts of New Zealand and South Africa – you pray you don’t get a flat and if you do, you pray you don’t get two!  At first I was disappointed, all this traveling and nothing, but then my luck changed. I was rewarded with seas of driftwood.


Now I should also say, not all the driftwood I came across was good enough to take (same happens when I walk the coastline) and not all would be useful, though I did find some beautifully worn and perfectly shaped pieces I could use. Especially a few table bases, the challenge lay in getting these (heavy and bulky) gorgeous pieces back to camp. I had to carry (or haul, I should say) to the canoe (some days it was quite a distance from where I ended up), carefully load into canoe (I was alone remember), then paddle…need to get a small, flat bottomed boat with outboard. Hopefully soon.


I was thankful that my back didn’t give out – especially given the distances and terrain I covered with some of these stumps balanced across my shoulders! 


I would return to camp, start the fire, eat, plan the next days’ search, and go to sleep. I look forward to returning to this region, not only for its’ driftwood, but for the sheer peacefulness (and I thought where we live is quiet!), the friendly and helpful locals and the impeccable beauty. Until then, enjoy the pics of what is to become…tables, art and assemblages…