Brooke Wade’s a modern Renaissance woman: She started out as a professional dancer in The Cincinnati Ballet, made the leap to NYU to study literature, and eventually carved out a niche as a Brooklyn woodworker. How’d she land where she did, you ask? “I saved this news clipping about a company called Brooklyn Farm Table, which made tables out of wood reclaimed from the boroughs. I just thought that was so cool,” Brooke explains. “Years later, I decided to see if I could work there, but they had gone out of business.” So she tracked down the former owner, Ralph Gorham, who now runs Brooklyn Lobster Pound. Long story short, Ralph hooked her up with a bunch of other people in the biz, and within a few days, she had a job working and learning in a Greenpoint shop. As she says, “The community was so warm and open to me—it felt like a sign!”
The work clicked for her—and isn’t as different from her days doing pliés as you might think. “Making things in a studio was familiar to me—it’s really analogous to dance. You’re still using physicality and muscle memory and all that,” Brooke says. These days, those rapid reflexes are devoted to turning re-used, NYC-sourced wood into ladles with spindly handles, hourglass-shaped teaspoons, and a perforated tool designed to strip herbs from their stems. We’d say that’s worthy of a standing ovation, no? —liz sheldon
BEHIND THE SCENES
It's going down—we’re yelling timber.
Parsley: Not just for garnishes anymore.