meet the makers | Apr 6, 2023 |
This self-taught furniture-maker crafts heirloom-quality pieces with modern appeal
This self-taught furniture-maker crafts heirloom-quality pieces with modern appeal
Todd HewittCourtesy of Last Ditch Design

Todd Hewitt doesn’t pay attention to trends. The Los Angeles–based founder of Last Ditch Design is on a mission to make furnishings that blend utility with elegance and, more importantly, stand the test of time. “I am committed to providing tailored pieces for those who appreciate functional design and sustainability,” he tells Business of Home. “Each design is built for those not just interested in how things look, but how they work, wear and feel every day that you live with it.”

A self-taught furniture-maker and designer, Hewitt spent 27 years honing his skills for artisanal brands such as Los Angeles–based Lawson-Fenning—where he served as a design consultant—and Henrybuilt (as the Seattle company’s director of production). “At Henrybuilt, I developed a strong eye for the details and an impeccable standard for quality—everything was considered, no aspect too small,” he says. “With Lawson-Fenning, I gained a renewed appreciation for the joy and preservation of hand-crafted heirloom furniture.”

This self-taught furniture-maker crafts heirloom-quality pieces with modern appeal
A Silas lounge chair in progressCourtesy of Last Ditch Design

In November 2022, he launched Last Ditch Design with LD2, a 30-piece line of minimalist, made-to-order items. “I spent a year prepping, designing, fabricating and developing the website before launching,” he says. “My goal with this collection was to launch a range of products across all categories that felt cohesive yet broad enough to be considered for all areas of the home.”

All of Hewitt’s case wood works are crafted by his own hand at LA Woodshop—a cooperative space for local artisans and makers—using a medley of durable raw materials including walnut, ash and oak. “I’m driven by elements of Scandinavian and midcentury design,” he says. “I try to let the forms and shapes—along with the fabrication techniques—be the unique aspects of the designs.”

In addition to forging each of his wooden pieces, Hewitt also handles everything from design conceptualization and engineering to marketing, photography, web management and client outreach. “I am a one-man band getting this show on the road, as I took this leap with only the support of my wife and two cats,” he says. “Fortunately, I also work with talented local upholsterers and steel fabricators for those elements.”

This self-taught furniture-maker crafts heirloom-quality pieces with modern appeal
The Silas lounge chair by Last Ditch DesignCourtesy of Last Ditch Design

Along with sustainable materials, clean lines and sculptural silhouettes reign supreme in Hewitt’s work. “I often find myself looking outside of the world of furniture for inspiration,” he says. “I am especially drawn to the geometric patterns of architecture as well as the organic nature of ceramics and jewelry.”

For his aforementioned inaugural collection, he employed a sleek mix of contemporary Scandi-style shapes with traditional Craftsman-esque accents, including a solid wood lounge chair with a built-in bolster cushion named Silas; a credenza with sliding caned panel doors called Sulaco; and a curvy oversize ottoman dubbed Bebop. “These pieces are designed to last generations,” says Hewitt. “Not only are they made from durable FSC-certified materials, but their design will stay relevant over time.”

Looking ahead, Hewitt plans to showcase his designs at New York’s International Contemporary Furniture Fair in May, where he can supply designers with a “hands-on experience” for the brand. “My hope is to forge new relationships within the interior design community that are built on trust, and the confidence that Last Ditch Design can provide unique products that are highly focused on quality, functionality and longevity,” he says.

If you want to learn more about Todd Hewitt, visit Last Ditch Design’s website or Instagram.

Homepage photo: The Bebop ottoman by Last Ditch Design | Courtesy of Last Ditch Design

Want to stay informed? Sign up for our newsletter, which recaps the week’s stories, and get in-depth industry news and analysis each quarter by subscribing to our print magazine. Join BOH Insider for discounts, workshops and access to special events such as the Future of Home conference.