Cross Cut Vintage Designs Builds Unique Furniture Made to Last
Writer / Seth Johnson
Photographer / Brian Brosmer
To fourth-generation carpenter Tabb Adams, a piece of furniture is much more than something you sit on. Rather than building a chair that might just be temporary, the owner of Cross Cut Vintage Designs would rather build something that lasts for decades, carrying memories along with it as it passes from generation to generation.
“It’s handmade, number one, and I strictly make everything out of furniture-grade lumber,” Adams says of his furniture. “It’s just more of a quality piece. It’s made out of quality materials. I like to think I put a little bit of love into each one of my pieces too.”
A graduate of Noblesville High School, Adams crafts furniture in a 100-year-old barn in Sheridan, putting plenty of time and care into every single piece he makes, whether it’s a chair, a table, a desk or anything else his clients might want. Born into a family of carpenters, he started working with his hands at a young age.
“I got my love for building and making things in high school,” Adams says. “I had a lot of shop class and was always the kind of kid that liked to take things apart and put them back together.”
As he grew older, Adams began working jobs that required a knowledge of craftsmanship. Out of the gate, he worked on some of Indianapolis’ most-loved music venues.
“I started out my career working for Live Nation Entertainment,” Adams says. “I was responsible for building maintenance at the Murat Theatre. I went through the whole reconstruction there when they did the renovation of that place. I actually helped with maintenance at Deer Creek Music Center, too, when it was still called Deer Creek.”
After working a myriad of hands-on jobs, however, Adams eventually decided to pursue furniture design.
Having built furniture for about three years now, he prides himself on being a personable craftsman.
“When I get new customers, I don’t just consider them a customer — I consider them a friend as well,” Adams says. “When I was a contractor, a lot of my customers actually became good friends. So that’s another important part. When I’m building something for somebody, I get to know them, and I would hope that they’d become a good friend in that process too.”
When someone comes to Cross Cut Vintage Designs for the first time, they often just present Adams with a basic idea or image that they have in mind for their custom piece of furniture.
“A lot of times, people come to me with just an idea of a look that they want, so I have to pull thoughts out of the customer’s head on exactly what they want,” he says. Sometimes, there is an added significance tied to the piece as well.
“Last year, I had a lady that came to me who had saved an old door from her great-grandparents home, and she wanted a church key built out of it,” Adams says. “She came to the shop, brought the door, and we had about an hour conversation about what she was looking for and how she wanted it to look. I just took that idea from there and made what she wanted.”
All of the furniture made at Cross Cut Vintage Designs is made to last. Personally, Adams now has some old furniture that was once in his parents’ home.
“I have seven or eight pieces of furniture in my home that were the first pieces of furniture that my parents purchased when they got married,” he says. “My parents believed in buying a quality piece of furniture that was going to last, so it’s cool to have those pieces in my home now.” Ultimately, he wants every piece of furniture that comes from Cross Cut Vintage Designs to be just as unique and reliable.
“I hope the same thing happens with my pieces that have happened with my parents’ pieces,” Adams says. “I hope that a mother and father might hand it down to their children someday. It’s all quality, handmade furniture, and I would hope it would last a lifetime, if not longer.”
Cross Cut Vintage Designs is located at 11315 300 N. in Sheridan, or you can visit them online at crosscutvintage.com and give them a call at 317-443-7307.