Trained as an architect at the University of Manitoba, Thom Fougere is the creative director of EQ3, the Canadian modern-furniture chain headquartered in his hometown of Winnipeg. When he's not overseeing company photo shoots or designing stores as he recently did for EQ3's new San Francisco location, Fougere, 27, manufactures his own furniture. His minimalist pieces, made of natural materials from the Prairies, adorn the living room of the downtown Winnipeg apartment he shares with girlfriend and fellow EQ3 employee Madi Cash. "It's where all the action kind of happens," says Fougere of the space. "It's where I read, where I listen to music, where I work and entertain, surrounded by my books and music."
"The Ton bent-wood chair is one of my favourite chairs. It's simple and organic in form. Ton was one of the first to utilize bent wood, starting in the late 1800s. This is a chair I usually sit on when I am tending the fire. The sheepskin warms it up."
The coffee table
"This is called the Tyndall table, and it is one of the first pieces of furniture I designed and manufactured on my own. I think that coffee tables are important. They are the heart of a living space, so I really wanted a heavy and hardy table that could be used with rigour. It is made of Tyndall stone that can only be found in one quarry in Manitoba. It is a vernacular material of the Prairies, which is why I wanted to use it."
"This is an EQ3 sofa called Reverie. It's the same sofa used on the cover of EQ3's annual catalogue in 2012/2013, the year of its debut. It is a classic design. I like the tan leather."
"My plant collection is almost as big as my book collection. I find plants just as satisfying to collect. I get most of them at the farmers' market here in Winnipeg, but some are cuttings of plants from friends who wanted to share."
"This is by Winnipeg artist Ken Lavallee, a friend of mine. I've always admired his art. He made this piece specifically for me and my girlfriend. We've recently started collecting art and this is one of the first paintings in our collection. I really like the hue of blue he chose. Blue is my favourite colour, so it fits in nicely."
The watering can
"This is self-explanatory: I use it to water the variety of plants in the apartment. But like much of the furniture, the watering can has developed a kind of patina. The copper has developed a darker hue over time. It is traditional in form. I like the sculptural element of it as well."
The side table
"I designed this table at the same time as I did the Tyndall. This one is made of unfinished solid cherry and powder-coated steel. It was inspired by the notion of exposing and objectifying everyday clutter."