Nessa Doran O'Reilly

Nessa Doran O Reilly & Sam Hutchings - Furniture Magpies.

Nessa is a designer/maker with over ten years' experience. She received her BA degree in Furniture Design and Technology in Dublin and two Master degrees in BNU High Wycombe in both Furniture Design and Conservation Restoration of Furniture and Decorative Arts.

Sam is a cabinet maker designer and restorer working in the industry for over twelve years. He completed his City and Guilds Bench Joinery in Bristol before going on to complete his BA degree in Furniture Conservation and Restoration at BNU High Wycombe.

Nessa and Sam run Furniture Magpies a furniture upcycling company that specialises in redesigning unwanted furniture into pieces that can be loved all over again. They have run upcycling workshops and courses with craftspace , Think Space, BNU , West Dean and from their own studio. Magpies work has been exhibited at London Design Festival, Milan Furniture fair, Anthropology New York, Singapore and the Olympic village London.

Nessa is also a presenter and upcycling expert on Chanel 4's Goks Fill Your House For Free and Phil Spencer's Perfect Home.

Describe your approach to teaching.

Our teaching approach is very hands on letting people get stuck in and seeing what works best for them. As each piece and component is unique so is our approach to each project. We want our students to feel relaxed and have fun.

What inspires your work?

Our work is completely inspired by the furniture we work with and our end goal of creating a functional beautiful piece of furniture from something unwanted.

Help preserve our future

We are part of a registered charity and rely on the support of generous donors, members and legacies to help us deliver world-class education in conservation, design and the creative arts and maintain our award-winning gardens.

Find out how to support us