In the dead of winter, sunny days may seem like a distant, taunting memory. But London-based design studio Hendzel and Hunt has the solution: sustainable furniture that cleverly doubles as a tribute to sunshine-filled times past and present. Their custom 12 O’Clock Shadow cabinet, made from salvaged wood, is inspired by the beautiful light in their client’s room, and it permanently captures the shadows cast on a beautiful sunny afternoon.

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The cabinet is crafted from old builder’s plywood sheets and salvaged ash door frames. By painstakingly measuring and studying where the shadows fell on a perfect summer day and using two kinds of reclaimed plywood, the designers were able to reproduce the effect of a permanent 12 o’clock shadow on the cabinet.

“The main challenge was being as accurate as we could to position the shadow as it would fall into the room,” explains designer Jan Hendzel. With that technical challenge met and the cabinet constructed and installed, the designers were rewarded with the satisfaction of seeing their work in situ. “We watched progressively through the day as the shadow crept in through the window and up onto the cabinet.”

Based in Peckham, South London, Hendzel + Hunt have built a reputation for the skillful use of reclaimed and sustainable materials. Besides manufacturing and designing custom cabinets and furniture, they have their own furniture range, Made in Peckham, which we’ve profiled on Inhabitat. By living and working very close to the local reclaimed timber yard, Hendzel + Hunt are able to keep abreast of the availability of materials, and to source their supplies locally. Frequently the materials have an interesting provenance, as is the case with an old entomology cabinet that became custom furniture for the Old Vic theatre.

The past couple of years, they’ve hosted the 24HR Design Challenge, inviting a select group of designers and makers to their studio to tackle an upcycling design brief over a period of 24 hours. The resulting objects are then showcased at the London Design Festival. Details for this year’s challenge, including the hunt for sponsors, are being worked out — stay tuned or get in touch with Hendzel and Hunt if you want to get in on the creative upcycling!

+ Hendzel + Hunt