Introducing Benton, our newest Sprucester!

We are delighted to announce that we have a new Sprucester. Meet Benton Burford! Benton learned about Spruce while working at Kyle Bunting. Intrigued by upholstery, Benton took one of our Bring Your Own Chair classes and we’ve been on his radar ever since. He’s been living in Austin since 2003, after moving from Midland, Texas, to attend school at the University of Texas. After earning his BFA in Studio Art, Benton chose to make Austin his home because of its central location to Dallas, Houston and San Antonio.

Having Benton around has been such a joy. He’s more than just an extra pair of hands; this fella is quite a talent. Benton shows his creativity with sewing projects, using unexpected and exotic materials such as scarves, vintage and couture fabrics and experimental trims. Take a look at some of his beautiful pillows and tea towels.

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How would you describe your design style? Who and what inspires you?

I would describe my design style as pretty eclectic. I like a lot of soft palettes, neutrals and, every now and then, something crazy and unexpected thrown in. I tend to get a lot of ideas from different art sources that have little to do with interior design. I wouldn’t really consider myself a fashion person, but one of my biggest inspirations right now is the interior design branch of Versace (Versace Home Collection). They have a big presence at Italian furniture design fairs, and it’s always a treat to see what they come up with and who they collaborate with. Their designs run the gamut from clean minimalism to completely over-the-top, and the collections usually have a fun theme based on whatever part of the world they’re pulling from that year. It’s always fantastically unreal. I love it.

What are your  hobbies?
I do a lot of pen and ink drawing and oil painting and use a lot of that in my designs (see below). Aside from that, I play video games to unwind. I’m also big on Turner Classic Movies.


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What is your favorite meal of the day? What would be included in that meal?
My favorite meal of the day is dinner. It’s the only meal where I never seem rushed and can really enjoy it. My goal is to always find a better chicken fried steak than the last one I’ve had.
Where is your favorite place that you have or would like to travel to?
I was fortunate enough to study abroad in Florence, Italy, and it influenced what I love to do greatly. I also traveled to Japan recently, and it was life changing. It’s a place that’s unlike anything I’ve ever experienced, and I loved soaking in everything, design-wise and otherwise. I’d go back in a heartbeat. I would also love to see India.
Do you have any pets?
I have a white chocolate miniature schnauzer named Charlotte. She’s a rotten egg, but I love her and I wouldn’t have it any other way!
As you can see, Benton is no rookie. We are excited to have him in the shop with us. His understanding of textiles and design is very useful at Spruce. Oh, and it’s a bonus that he’s tall. Who needs a ladder when Benton is around? You  can visit Benton’s website and  Etsy shop if you would like to see more of his beautiful work.