History

Mark Stephens Furniture was founded in 1992 following Mark's training at Parnham College unter the tutelage of John Makepeace.  Mark now has a full team of cabinet makers supporting him.  Our clients often ask Mark how it all began...


So, how did it all start? The simple answer is that I have always loved working with wood, and remember from a very early age helping my grandfather fix and make boats. However, even though my passion never ceased, my career started as a retail management consultant. Then, quite literally one day, after visiting an exhibition of John Makepeace's furniture, I felt completely inspired and knew I needed a complete career change. I decided if I was going to change path it had to be Parnham or nothing - In my eyes only the best would do.

After a very intensive day of interviews and designing, which certainly tested my creativity, I was accepted onto a course with eleven other students and lived at Parnham for the next two years - a beautiful house set in delightful grounds. I had an incredible time living and breathing design and making and learning about different woods.  Ultimately, I learnt to combine innovative design with fine craftsmanship. The importance of working with only the highest quality of materials and focusing on fine detail remains with me to this day.

My new career as a contemporary furniture Designer and Maker was launched at an exhibition at Sothebys and after that I set up my own workshop in Chiswick, West London.  As the business flourished we moved the workshop down the road to Kew.  We now have a showroom in Kew and our workshop is in the Brecon Beacons National Park.
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