Against the grain: introducing Foundrywood founder Mats Christéen

Mats Christéen has gone from professional hockey player, to model to rising furniture design star

Fractal bookcase with nickel finish
Foundrywood's 'Fractal' collection weds the geometry of hand-welded steel with the individul knots, bumps and grains of wood. Pictured: Fractal bookcase with nickel finish 
(Image credit: TBC)

Mats Christéen’s journey into furniture design is as remarkable as they come. Drafted into the world of professional hockey as a teen, he moved into high fashion modelling before the design world beckoned in 2013. That was the year he started Foundrywood. 

Marrying the natural beauty of organic and reclaimed materials with the pure and modern lines of Scandinavian design, Christéen has staked his business on the type of rustic industrialism that harks back to his roots and embraces his new home in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. He oversees all of the creative design and still crafts a limited number of pieces for The Mats Christéen collection under the Foundrywood brand.

His aesthetic ranges from thick salvaged beams bookended between two metal blocks – a bench needing only its most archetypal elements – to the visual and intellectual puzzle of the 'Jenga' dining table, made up of intersecting white pine beams.

Between this balance of delicacy and power, a raw edge persists – literally, in the case of the unfinished side of the 'Fractal' coffee table.

Mats Christéen wearing a dark t-shirt, jeans and brown boots sitting on a black and wooden bench in a room with light grey walls, wood flooring and a dark coloured patterned rug

Swede-turned-Brooklynite Mats Christéen started Foundrywood in 2013

(Image credit: Foundrywood)

Close up view of the light wood 'Jenga' dining table top and its cut out design

The 'Jenga' dining table tops puzzle-like pine beams with a clear glass table top

(Image credit: Foundrywood)

View of the 'Fractal' coffee table - a wooden table with a metal leg that features a geometric pattern

'Fractal' coffee table

(Image credit: Foundrywood)

View of Mats Christéen in a denim shirt, welding helmet and gloves welding material

Before Foundrywood, Mats was a professional hockey player and model. Building with raw materials was a part of his Swedish childhood

(Image credit: Foundrywood)

Close up view of the dark coloured and wooden 'Water Tower' bench against a white background

'Water Tower' bench

(Image credit: Foundrywood)


For more information, visit the Foundrywood website