Meet the makers: CAINNON
"Cainnon Handcraft was born out of a necessity for quality American made goods. Our pieces reflect a deep respect for both traditional woodworking methods and modern design aesthetics. We pride ourselves in making beautiful, functional products with permanence; Heirlooms for future generations. All of our wood is responsibly sourced, primarily salvaged from locally fallen trees and recycled lumber."
How did you two meet? How long have you been working together? Tell us how it all began!
Kiki: Cainnon and I both relocated to Charleston, South Carolina in 2008 from Florida without knowing each other. I was an art student and he was a working artist and our relationship eventually evolved Notebook style (minus all the drama!)
What led to the idea of crafting combs? Can you walk us through your creative process?
Kiki: In the beginning, most of the projects we collaborated on were large scale commissions. There was a longing to create something that could be hand held day after day and was both beautiful and functional. Cainnon’s mother was a hairstylist and I had spent a few years managing hair salons when Cainnon had the idea to carve his first comb. After years of testing, he continued to make revisions with sizing and wood types until he finally found a design and process that worked best for us.
Cainnon: Our modern primitive design esthetic was found through trial and error, after studying our “reject” combs, some with broken or uneven teeth. They had the most personality and we took our time in recreating them to ensure they would be strong but still have the unique qualities of the combs that came before them.
Do either of you have a favorite piece from the collection? A piece with an interesting story behind it?
Cainnon: All of our products are made from woods that have a deep history. Our walnut was salvaged from my great uncles farm in East Tennessee, our oak is from a fallen tree in Piedmont Park in Atlanta, and our hickory was pulled from the Suwannee River down here in Florida. Every piece is made to be sentimental and to become someones favorite.
Would each of you mind sharing 6 random facts about yourself?
- We have pet chickens that we raise in our backyard (just as friends, not food!)
- Cainnon’s go-to karaoke artist is Bon Jovi
- Although he had many ideas of his own, it was Kiki’s idea to name the business Cainnon
- We have 3 adopted kitties, Ghost Cat, #2, and Harry D
- You’ll never see Kiki eat a doughnut (that’s how fast she eats them!)
- Before woodworking, Cainnon was a professional faux painter
You’ve mentioned on your website - the importance of creating functional products with permanence like heirlooms; Do either of you posses any heirlooms that have been passed down to you?
Cainnon: Kiki’s great grandfather handmade most of his family’s furniture with lumber from their property in Virginia in the late 19th century. We were gifted his dining room table when we were married and have hauled it all over the south with us. I wonder if it ever crossed his mind when he was making it that one day his great, great grandchildren would be sitting at that same table one day.
At MEUS we’re all about finding a connection with the things we own - choosing things that make an impact on our day-to-day and ultimately have the ability to make our lives more beautiful. We like to call it “inspired living”. Can you each share with us something that you’ve recently purchased that inspires you and/or makes your life better in some themselves.
Kiki: We recently invested in a few new hand tools that are a work of art in themselves. I never put them up because whenever they catch my eye on the workbench I am instantly motivated to put them too use!
Now available at MEUS:
Images by Cainnon & Kiki Gregg
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