Maker of the month - Mat Hibbert, furniture maker

PUBLISHED: 12:53 25 July 2013 | UPDATED: 12:53 25 July 2013

Mat Hibbert - Maker of the month

Mat Hibbert - Maker of the month

Archant

“I actually wanted to be a professional kite-surfer, until about four years ago,” says Mat Hibbert of his life before making furniture. So what changed his mind? “I’ve always enjoyed making things with wood, but it was my brother that accidentally made me really fall in love with it.” Far from being a furniture maker himself, Mat’s brother was actually embarking on a round-the-world sailing trip, from their home near Chichester. When Mat was inspecting the vessel before his brother left, he noticed that there was no table, and decided to make one. “From that moment on I was addicted – it was my new passion, my new kite-surfing.”

Having started with tables and chairs, Mat has since worked with audio company Bowers & Wilkins, who commissioned him to create a sculpted iPod dock, using their speakers. “Everything had to be so precise for the speakers to fit and work properly, but I had amazing freedom when sculpting the dock to create the shape I wanted – the finished article is probably my favourite work to date.”

When not on a specific commission, Mat is inspired by the shapes he sees when walking up on the Downs, and architecture, which he says “has so much to offer in terms of form and ideas – there are some really beautiful buildings out there.”

In terms of what the future holds, Mat wants to make a name for himself, and to exhibit in shows and galleries, so that people become familiar with his style, and the thinking behind it. “The best thing about making furniture is having people look at your work and really appreciate it. You just think to yourself, ‘well I made that with my own two hands’ – it’s really very satisfying.” n

17 Warner Rd, Selsey, Chichester, West Sussex, PO20 9DE; 01243 607653, 07855 736899

mathibbertdesigns.co.uk

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