What is Faux Bois?

Concrete faux bois is a traditional art form that flourished 150 years ago. Faux bois means “false wood” in French. In 1849, French inventor and gardener Joseph Monier figured out that cement could be sculpted and shaped with the help of steel reinforcement. He shared his discovery with the world, inspiring artisans to create whimsical nature-inspired furniture such as; garden benches, tables, planters, bridges, grottos, and trellises. Unfortunately, this art form and many of its techniques were forgotten as the early 20th century grew fascinated with geometric shapes and the machine aesthetic of the Art Deco period.

Early faux bois in a French park, 1867

Faux bois furniture today by Diane Husson

Love at First Sight

While researching concrete I came upon this little known art form and immediately fell in love.The artisans of the past are long gone. They left behind no record of their mortar recipes or sculpting methods. Undaunted, I set out on a journey to unlock their secrets and use modern materials to create my own unique furniture artwork inspired by their tradition.

Faux Bois Process

Carving details into wet cement

Faux Bois Chair

The finished chair

Faux Bois Furniture

Wisteria vine Faux Bois Bench and faux bois tree table in garden

Is that real wood?

I get asked that a lot.

All the nature-inspired concrete faux bois garden furniture you see on this site are one-of-a-kind art pieces that I designed and sculpted using steel rebar and quality sculpture-grade cement in my studio by the Chesapeake Bay.

Faux Bois Bench

Who commissions you?

Fine art collectors, avid gardeners, botanical gardens, horticulturists and designers looking for something special for their clients. My collectors seek unique, compelling, and timeless furniture artwork that enhances the beauty of the surrounding landscape or home. They also want it to be functional, low maintenance, and able to withstand constant, year-round use and severe weather. What they desire cannot be mass-produced or purchased from a catalogue.