Sometimes art ends up imitating life. Thomas Buczkowski grew up in Michigan’s north woods. The son of a lumberjack, he possesses a deeply ingrained aesthetic appreciation for wood and iron. Yet, as an MFA film grad and New York City resident, he simultaneously values the finesse of cosmopolitan living.
Ruggedness and richness. Two seemingly disparate elements that nevertheless fuse harmoniously, both in Buczkowski and Rough Luxe, Williamsburg’s new 1,000-square-foot furniture shop. First coined by contemporary interior designers and popularized by an eponymous London hotel, this term connotes a style that is by definition a study in contradictions. It can mean an industrial-looking desk crafted by a master artisan from superior-quality wood. Or a plush velvet settee plunked next to a rickety metal bookcase. “In the past, luxury meant only patina, veneer, and bling,” notes Buczkowski. Rough luxe rejects those antiquated limitations. Never precious, it is instead a celebration of the imperfect and authentic, and its popularity is ever expanding.