About TT Designs

Elegance, Style & Craftsmanship.

Hi, I'm Theresa. I run my woodworking studio in the Essex countryside on the outskirts of Braintree.

Teri Chiam of TT Designs working on an intricate piece of hand cut marquetry in her Braintree studio
Close up shot of intricate hand cut marquetry

My products are designed and handmade by me. All the intricate marquetry is cut by hand using a scalpel. The timber I use is mainly sourced from off-cuts reclaimed from joinery shops or veneer suppliers.

I like to think i am giving new life to condemned wood.

I like to create simple designs to a high level of craftsmanship. My style also incorporates the use of marquetry with contrasting veneers to add elegant detail to my work. I get my inspiration for my designs from nature and my travels around the world.

What is Marquetry?

Marquetry involves cutting out and piecing together small and intricate pieces of veneer (thin slices of wood) to form decorative designs or pictures.

I use the “Window” method which is the traditional knife cutting technique. The first thing I do is to trace the design onto the veneer.  The shape is then cut out, taking care to keep the knife upright so that the edge of the cut is clean and vertical.

The veneer to be inserted into the resulting cut out is then placed behind the resulting hole, or “window”. Once I’m happy with the positioning I carefully cut the insert veneer using the edge of the “window” as a cutting guide.

The insert piece is then removed from its leaf, gently pressed into the “window” and taped using special veneer tape.  Each piece is added this way, eventually ending up with the finished picture the thickness of a single sheet of veneer.

The box you made for Stanley's Christening was amazing, a truly lovely keepsake.

Get In Touch!

Looking for something completely bespoke and special? Send an email and we will get back to you as soon as possible! Meanwhile, feel free to browse my Etsy shop for some inspiration.

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