Camping for the Well-Heeled Sophisticate

Behold the burgeoning new era of glamorous camping.

Or, as it’s known at Old Hickory Furniture, “glamping.”

The company’s been around for 119 years. It basically invented the category of rustic outdoor furniture, providing it to the National Park Service at the turn of the 20th century.

Much of that furniture is still in use today – and it’s as sturdy as ever.

So back in January 2018, in a move aimed at bolstering the company’s image in the public realm, Old Hickory hired interior designer Jeremiah Young as its creative director.

His job is fairly simple: “I keep this national treasure relevant in the marketplace with new design energy,” Young says.

He recently delivered on that mission – in spades. Young’s design for “Camp Hickory” recently won the “best design” award at the Boutique Design New York show at the Javits Center.

“I wanted to stand out in that big, cold room in that big convention center – I wanted people to see us and be transported to some cozy camp in the woods,” he says. “People were mesmerized by it.”

Draped in hunter green canvas to mimic a tented, luxury outdoor experience, the booth was curated down to vintage books on a table and desk, with weathered skull, framed historical photos, flannel shirt and worn boots. (Personally, I’m partial to the snapping turtle shell.)

“Imagine being surrounded by things that are beautiful – all that you would want and need,” he says. “It’s 10-foot by 20-foot tent with every detail thought through.”

All this, not from someone armed with multiple pedigrees from Pratt, RISD or Parsons the New School – but instead with a modest degree in English Literature from the University of Montana – and a well-staffed interior design firm called Kibler & Kirch.

“I’ve found it’s about passion – I teach myself things,” he says. “I’m nerdy for design and furniture.”

If that’s the case, let’s hear it for the nerds – and the très chic concept of “glamping” from Old Hickory.

For more, go here and here.

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