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Christopher Alessandro

Yacht Craftsman turned furniture designer

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Expert Craftsmanship

By talented craftsmen

Christopher Alessandro, former yacht builder and skilled artisan brings to you furniture design and craftsmanship of the highest level.

His workshop nestled in a small district of the vibrant and bustling city of Buenos Aires, he and his trusted and experienced team work to create classical timeless pieces with a contemporary twist.

Using sustainable wood and a combination of traditional methods as well as Christopher's skills acquired from his years of yacht building, they aim to make furniture that is not only practical, but beautiful and unique in their own right.

pieces of wood in workshop_edited.jpg
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Find out more about Christopher

Interview by Jenny Mitchell

1.        What is your full name?

Christopher Alessandro O'Donnell

2.            Where are you from? And what is your background?

I am originally from the United States, My father is American, my mother is Italian

3.            Where did you grow up?

I moved around a lot. When I was ten years old I moved to England, I grew up near London. When I was twenty I moved to Italy, where I became an apprentice shipwright.

During my time in Italy I fell in love with an Argentinian woman (Lorena) who enchanted me and kidnapped me and took me to Argentina.

4.            What did you want to be when you were younger?

A surgeon.

5.            Tell me about your yacht building background? And experience working in Liguria Italy?

I became an Apprentice shipwright in Liguria, Italy building yachts which I did for eight years.

6.            What made you decide to leave?

My main reason was that I wanted to follow Lorena but I had also reached a plateau and needed new challenges.

7.            Why did you decide to start your own furniture business?

It was always my intention from the beginning. Although challenging at times, I enjoy the freedom it gives me.

8.            What is your furniture style? And what are your influences?

I do not really have one style, I enjoy new high complexity. I enjoy incorporating engineering into my designs.

My influences are my carpentry teachers Bruno Forza, Oliviero Franzosi, Pino Sechi and Enrique Formaini.

They transmitted their experience to me including their tricks and perseverance. I have always admired their attention to detail and artistry which I try to emulate in everything I do.

9.            What are your ambitions? How do you envision the future of your business?

I envision a kind of school of carpentry for young people without a trade.

My ambitions are to create a business which will recreate the type of business I was in Italy to revive a nearly lost art in Argentina.

10.         Do you have any exciting projects in the pipeline?

Yes I have many. One of them, for example, is a shoe cabinet mechanism design.

11.         Tell me about your Family/friends circle in Buenos Aires and day to day life?

In Buenos Aires I live with my partner Lorena And my 6 year old son, Simon.

Argentinians are very open people. It is easy to make friends. Still, I don’t have that much time as I work a lot, I have few but good friends. We have quite a hectic life here. I wake up early and take Simón to school every day.

II then rush to work after that and I try to help and organise the tasks of the people that help me at the workshop.

12. Tell me about your work team at your workshop.

My work team is a special subject. I work with an Argentinian, a Paraguayan and 2 Venezuelans. My team not only work hard but also support four poor migrant families, and gives hope to them. It is a lot of responsibility and I take my business and work very seriously.

13.         Do you intend to pass down your skills to your son? And would you like him to carry on the business one day?

Yes, I would love to teach Simon if he wants to learn. Simón was diagnosed with PDD a couple of years ago and even though he is a smart kid, is hard for him to learn. Still, he is very precise and oriented to detail. He loves art so I think he has potential.

I would like to have him with me at the shop so he learns the old way. He will be able to go through every step, from passing the broom to refinishing a fine piece.

14.         What makes Buenos Aires so different from other places you’ve lived? What do you like/love/ miss most?

Buenos Aires is a capital city with a mild weather and both European And Latin influence.

It is huge, not that well connected and with traffic so sometimes takes a long time to go from one place to another.

The main characteristic of this society is freedom, sometimes too much. I miss order and predictability, that exists in England.

I miss my family, my dog and my friends from England And Italy.

15.         In order, what are the three things most important to you?

The three more important things in life for me are freedom, family And work.

16.         Lastly, what is your life philosophy?

My philosophy in life is that you should always try to challenge yourself and that you should trust people and help them always. This blessed world we have received is to be shared.

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