Artist / Craftsman Josh Hulbert and Modern Classics Custom Furniture and Woodworking


By  Doris Faltys


Josh Hulbert and I met downtown Olympia for coffee one afternoon.  His day job is writing software.   We are getting together to talk about the “hobby” that is filling more and more of his after work hours.  Josh has always enjoyed and had an interest in wood working.  He had not given much time towards this interest until he and his wife went looking for an entertainment center for their home.  They went into a high end furniture store to see what was available.   Josh and his wife found something they liked the look of, but Josh was surprised.  “It didn’t feel well built,” he said.  He tells me that he thought about it for a bit before mentioning to his wife that he thought he could build something just as nice for less money.  “I didn’t know how, but thought I could figure it out” he says.

The entertainment center was his first piece of furniture.  It turned out, “really well,” and gave Josh the confidence to take on other projects.  He built a dining room hutch with a glass door, some shelving, a night stand, and an armoire for their home. Friends visiting wondered where Josh and his wife purchased the furniture.  Upon hearing his answer, it did not take long before requests began from people who wanted to own a, “Josh Hulbert original.”

Modern Classics Custom Furniture and Woodworking, Josh’s business name came into being about 5 months ago.  For now Josh plans to continue with both careers building furniture, and writing software.  Furniture making happens in the Hulbert shop that is connected to his home, most evenings and a few hours on the weekends.  Josh tells me that a furniture project takes about a week and a half to create.

Josh will follow a customer’s idea, or create the design himself.  Each piece is custom designed.  Every piece is different.  He mentions that he appreciates the durability of the mission and craftsman style furniture. Josh uses quality materials, no particle board or laminate.  He likes to use different types of wood and sometimes, “looks for unique materials to incorporate such as reclaiming old growth fir siding,” to use for his projects.  For the most part he uses screw-less doweled, or dove- tail joints that will as Josh says, “last a lifetime.”  He tells me that he, “signs his work with a branding iron,” usually on the side or somewhere out of sight.

“Quality, Creativity, and Value,” are the important tenants of Modern Classics Custom Furniture and Woodworking.  “Building furniture is not just about what’s on the outside. The same quality and care is given to every element, inside and out, to create a finished product that is attractive, strong and functional.   Many people believe the term “custom furniture” implies expensive. This is not necessarily the case.”  Modern Classics furniture is, “built with solid boards, quality hardware and fasteners, and strong joints.  Not only will you be able to see and feel the quality, but the cost will be less than similar styled pieces from high-end furniture stores – and they won’t contain particle board,” Josh states.

Customers can choose additions such as custom base or crown molding, floating shelves, decorative cabinet doors or storage built-ins that add character, value and beauty to their home.  Josh states that many options are available to compliment any decor, and customers are surprised how affordable these additions are to install.

A list of projects you might consider ordering from Modern Classics include: Entertainment Centers, Tables, Hutches, Bars, Bed Frames, Armoires, Dressers, Night Stands, Cabinets, Book Cases, Benches, Console Tables, Lights, Frames, Candle Holders, Shelves, Planters, Vases, and most anything you can dream up that is made of wood!

Josh is hoping to display his Modern Classics Furniture in local retail stores sometime soon.

Contact Josh Hulbert, Modern Classics Furniture:  360.878.2548


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