Bare necessities


From Cheddar Gorge in Somerset, Oli Lee of With Bear Hands upcycles and creates fabulous pieces of furniture and homewares. His projects range from a bathroom cabinet made from reclaimed floorboards to a feature wall panelled with wood from pallets and beds made from solid oak beams. With Bear Hands was born ‘out of a love for design and a need to create’, and the upcycled nature of the materials is something that’s particularly important to Oli.
‘I love using reclaimed wood as it’s so full of character and history,’ he explains. ‘Whether it be some sea-worn driftwood that might have floated across the ocean to the shores of the West Country, or a 200-year-old handhewn piece of timber where you can see the axe marks. I love the way that wood can keep on giving, producing a second, third or fourth life after it’s been cut down.’
• To see more of Oli’s work, go to

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