The name "Altered Nature" reflects our commitment to recover, recycle and redefine materials that have been discarded and objects that are naturally fallen (we do not cut down trees or destroy wildlife to procure materials).
My husband Dean owns a small family construction business in Lake County, Ohio. He has brought joy to hundreds of families with the decks, pergolas, playhouses, ponds and garden structures that he builds. In the winter and very early spring he works indoors, renovating and redesigning living spaces such as bathrooms, kitchens & basements. The down side of this is the demolition or scrap materials that must be removed from the site. He will often come home with loads of demolished decks or fences and these materials were doomed to the Lake County landfill. I have often wondered about the impact we could make if that material did not end up there, but instead was used to provide someone else with a little happiness. This is how "Altered Nature" came to be.
Each piece we design is HANDCRAFTED. We DO NOT mass produce by machine with the exception of our postcards. We do not sub out any of our work, It is done in our wood shop by our family. In fact, most of our materials are collected by our family & a few friends. We will use some "new" materials within our creations (hooks, knobs, screws, etc), but the wood has all been recycled and several of our paints are left overs from construction jobs.
We do not PURCHASE ANY seashells or sea life to insert in our creations unless we know that they were deceased PRIOR to being picked up- this means either we personally collect the items, our family and friends pick up the items or we approach someone on the beach collecting items and offer to purchase from them. There are some individuals that we have met in Florida that actually go out and collect shells for a living and we will occasionally support their endeavor. We will use donated items only if they are headed to the garbage dump (friends throwing away old decor or items containing shells) to prevent more discarded waste. We do not want innocent life to be lost for "decoration" or commercial use. We deeply value the good gifts and life that comes from the oceans, sea's and lakes and we work hard to preserve these gifts and to prevent destroying our ecosystems.