Concierge

Find a Stay

Our Workspace

Journal

For Teams

Post title image: Ashore x Pegg Furniture: Introducing Michael Buick

Ashore x Pegg Furniture: Introducing Michael Buick

Pegg Furniture Designer and founder Michael Buick on reinventing pegged joinery, and launching a new furniture brand.

Partner Stories

If you've stayed at an Ashore, you've benefitted from the handiwork of Oxfordshire-based furniture designer, Michael Buick. In today's guest post, we follow Michael's journey in creating an innovative peg-based joinery brand.

The Pegg furniture desk.The Pegg furniture desk.

When I arrived in Oxford fresh-faced and excited to study philosophy I never imagined that twenty years later I would have swapped my pen for a pillar drill. Now I design and make furniture. The way I got here explains a lot about the furniture I make and about Pegg, the business I’ve founded.

Hard at workHard at work

My Dad took pride in the efficient way he could pack a car. Good thing, because he was going to help me do that six times a year. Like my fellow students I would set myself up in my room at college and then two months later pack it up again at the end of term. This was just the start of life on the move. In my twenties and early thirties I changed home an average of once a year!

Well, that is a lifestyle that can make you hate furniture: the bulky to lift; the impossible to store; making do with ugly because it’s only temporary. I did my time at the IKEA desk with the wonky screw-on-legs and a shoe box for a monitor stand!

The other thing that took root at Uni was a physical conundrum which would help to define my career: occasional typing-caused twinges in my arms became, in my first job, a pair of limbs that had exploded with pain. I remember being at the cinema unable to put them on the arm rests. Although it eased, it was the start of a long dance with something that might be called ‘carpal tunnel syndrome’ (it wasn’t), or ‘upper limb disorder’ (nice and vague) or ‘arm nerve pain’.

Anyway, I threw everything at solving it, but it always came back, and haunted my rise as a sustainability communications genius (the profession I’d picked). Yoga, physio, swimming sessions during lunch breaks, ergonomic everything… nothing kept it away for long.

A peg-based Pegg furniture setupA peg-based Pegg furniture setup

It was so frustrating. Eventually I decided that one day I would look back and be grateful for my condition, whatever it was. And I am. Because it gave me the push into changing career and becoming a designer-maker.

While renovating my first home I found that my arms had recovered - I was doing minimal computer time, you see.

So I vowed to find a way to avoid returning to spending five+ days a week on a computer. I found a furniture maker who let me turn up at his workshop for a while, and then discovered - what good fortune! - that Oxford has Britain’s best furniture school, Rycotewood.

Three years later I graduated with a First, four Pegg prototypes, and then brought together my previous career and my new one by creating my own ethical furniture brand.

So Pegg has these roots: a passion for furniture that makes it easy to move home or adapt the one you are in; a determination to be more than just sustainable but to champion a rethink about how we live and consume; and an awareness that we need furniture that helps computer time stay as easy on our bodies as possible.

The Pegg Desk is perhaps the product that best achieves all these so far. Designing it was so satisfying, because a whole set of goals were realised so elegantly.

But that’s a design story for next time…

Next week we'll be publishing pt 2 - how Pegg innovation helps power the Ashore workspace.

If you're interested in a Pegg piece of your own, check out the Pegg website here.

Continue reading from The Journal:

No habits beat bad habits

Desk Notes
You probably think government makes bad founders. Here’s why you’re wrong.
July 10, 2024

The CEO Residency Programme

Ashore News
Time to think. On us.
July 2, 2024

How Jensen Huang predicted and perfected hybrid work

The Future of Work
Key lessons from the Nvidia CEO on developing effective remote work policies.
July 1, 2024

You had one job…

Desk Notes
Why we’re entirely too reasonable about the latest wfh productivity stats.
June 24, 2024

The age of the enthusiast

Desk Notes
To figure out the future of work, look to a Japanese game designer’s twitter feed
June 6, 2024
Follow us
X (Formerly Twitter)

X (Formerly Twitter)

Instagram

Instagram

LinkedIn

LinkedIn

Legal

Privacy Policy

Terms & Conditions

Host Agreement

Frequently Asked Questions

Information

Ashore For Teams

Email hello@ashore.io

About Us

Content Partnerships

Founder Residencies

Team Retreats

Extras

Gift Card Shop

Write to your boss, with AI

Chat with our AI Booking Assistant

Reading

The Journal

Aled’s Desk Notes

Travel Guides

Famous towns & villages in the UK

The Best towns & villages in the UK

The Prettiest towns & villages in the UK

Work Guides

How do you come up with new ideas?

How do you ensure remote workers & teams are productive?

Members