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INLAYS: Our Tribute to Bowling's Heyday

INLAYS: Our Tribute to Bowling's Heyday

2 minute read

One cannot overstate the popularity of bowling in the last century, particularly through the 1950's, 60's and 70's. The number of communities throughout the country that had their own bowling alley is hard to fathom, but there were few that did not have at least one 16-lane alley. Many had two or more large 24-48 lane alleys. But, its ubiquity made bowling's downsizing inevitable, and sure enough, since the late 80's, bowling centers have been closing by the score as leisure time is spent less in community-based buildings and more in the home.

Since the early days of CounterEv, customers have requested lane markers on their pieces to remind them and their houseguests that their furniture was crafted from reclaimed bowling lanes. However, the arrows and dots occur but once per lane making the odds of them landing on your piece very slim. So, to invoke the spirit of bowling's past glory, we expertly inlay black walnut arrows and dots on almost all of our furniture products, upon request. Just check the ADDITIONAL OPTIONS tab on the product page and add either Dots or Arrows to the cart.

Inlaying requires great skill. The process involves routing out the space for the black walnut to be sunken into the nearly finished piece. Here's a Lilly Stool getting our arrow option.

Arrow Inlays by CounterEv Home

Arrow inlays by CounterEv

Because every piece is unique, the routing is done freehand, without the use of a template.

Arrow Inlays by CounterEv Home

making it both labor intensive and high stakes...

Inlays by CounterEv Home Inlays by CounterEv Home

But with a skilled hand, the results are stunning!

Arrow Inlays by CounterEv Home

With our Warm Brown stain this Lilly Stool is ready for action!


*If you add inlays to your piece(s) you'll want to consider your choice of stain. A dark stain will lessen the contrast of the inlays making the effect more subtle.

Whereas a light stain will contrast the inlays and really make them punch.

Either way you roll, inlays will be a subtle, or not so subtle, reminder that your furniture was crafted from a beautiful vintage wood that once served another purpose—as the backbone of the number one pastime of mid-century America.


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