The Live Sawn Design Movement Image Placeholder

© Jason O’Rear

The Live Sawn Design Movement

A new and essential direction in environmentally responsible design

Working with salvaged and underutilized wood materials for the past 25 years has taught us to stretch beyond the expected and let nature be our guide to what is beautiful and acceptable in building design. 

Live sawn describes a traditional and historic slicing method for lumber, more commonly used across Europe. This technique, combined with our responsible sourcing, produces a less edited, whole-grain appearance in flooring, wall cladding, table-top and veneer plywood

UE Live Sawn further allows for wider board widths, less waste, and provides a traceable wood story to be celebrated within projects across the country. 

UE Live Sawn Wide Plank Ash Flooring Installation

Whole Grain Aesthetic 

With live sawn milling, each slice of wood portrays the full range of grain naturally occurring within the tree. Instead of separating the wood into rift, quarter and flat sawn, live sawn slicing captures all these grains within each cut or board. The sweeping full grain appearance communicates a natural modernist approach to material selection. 

“Our live sawn products represent and connect our customers to the whole tree experience, rather than the tamed and edited appearance of more common milling techniques.”

– Robin Janson, Creative Director 

Urban Wood Ash Veneer Paneling in Matte Clear Finish Installed in LinkedIn Omaha Office

© Jason O’Rear

Overall Advantages of Live Sawn  

Because we treat wood as a treasured and limited resource, we find live sawn to be the ideal cutting technique to maximize and honor our use of local and underutilized wood resources.   

  • Urban wood trees – these rescued ungraded trees are more suitable to live and plain sawn milling, rather than the rigid requirements of more selective milling.   
  • Less waste – Live sawn incorporates the whole tree, with less Waste, whereas contemporary sawing methods edit out various parts of the tree. 
  • Greater board widths – Live sawn provides opportunities for greater widths in flooring, wall and ceiling cladding 
  • Wood stability – Because live sawn contains rift and quartered along with plain sawn, it too carries the dimensional stability that rift and quartered cuts are known for.

The visual impact of live sawn brings the experience of nature into the spaces we inhabit. Our brand and design partners are happy to celebrate the character and unique qualities of these sustainable or underutilized materials, because they understand the story and connection that they provide.    

Learn more about UE Live Sawn, our latest collection of sustainable materials.

We look forward to working with our current customers as build new relationships in the future.

If you are interested in learning more about Urban Evolutions, contact us today.

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