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October 2003
Baker Introduces Classic Forms Steeped in Distinction with Its Latest Offering for the Milling Road Collection

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (October 16, 2003) - At the Fall 2003 International Home Furnishings Market in High Point, N.C., Baker unveiled forms capturing the character and warmth of Old World antiques to expand its successful Milling Road collection. The pieces showcased the company's inimitable finishing expertise and painstaking attention to eye-catching details.

Using techniques honed from years of practice by master craftsmen, 26 new pieces display an Old World refinement that brings elegance and individuality to today's homes. These new casegoods mesh together in an engaging design mix. Some are crafted in simple reference, while others are inspired by the ornate styling of centuries past. This thoughtful compilation lends a unique character and quality to the forms.

"One of the things that sets Baker apart from the crowd is our magnificent finishes" explained Joe McCambridge, Milling Road product designer. "The pieces introduced this Market for the Milling Road collection reflect the skills artisans have employed for generations, and as a result, each piece takes on the feel of a well-loved antique."

Three distinct finishes were designed by Baker that remark upon the Old World sensibility found in these new Milling Road pieces. The warm, red tones of Old World Mahogany, the soft, brown hues of Old World Walnut, and the layered depth of Old World Caramel were created to complement the personality of the classic forms.

One noteworthy piece is a seven-drawer walnut chest, perfect for beside a sofa or bed. This piece is veneered in a distinctive walnut burl that has been meticulously hand-rubbed, giving it a warm, burnished appearance that allows the true character of the wood to shine through.

Diminutive cockbeading around the drawers creates a play between shadow and light that shows off the Old World Walnut finish. Fine antiqued brass pendant pulls have been given a subtle patina to darken the hardware and provide a dramatic contrast with the wood.

A handsome six-shelf ètagère crafted in richly figured mahogany has a gently worn appearance that gives it the look of a fine antique that's been passed down through the generations. It offers classic 18th century styling with slim but sturdy turned posts that terminate in brass sockets and casters, and displays the Old World Mahogany finish.

Another piece, a maple hall chest inspired by a 19th Century Italian original, has the slender, straight lines that define neoclassic design. Two serpentine molded drawers and a rectangular top are poised atop graceful tapering legs. The shape of circular brass ring pulls is echoed in the round keyhole frames carved in the center of each drawer. The Old World Caramel finish gives it the burnished gleam of a favorite heirloom.

Baker also introduced a series of pieces that offer an illusionary, trompe l'oeil-inspired effect. This inspired finish is achieved by first applying coats of Chinese red paint, followed by coats of ebony black, then the black is gently rubbed through to expose the vibrant color underneath.

This time-honored technique can be seen in a Ming armoire that, like all Milling

Road pieces, reveals its character through its details. The piece has a carefully hand-rubbed finish which allows Chinese red to peek out from beneath layers of black, and it employs paktong metal hardware - an ancient alloy of silver and brass known for its strength - on the cabinet doors and large storage drawer below. The piece offers a modern sophistication, strength of line and remarkable detailing that honors the 16th Century Chinese original after which it was modeled.

Baker Knapp & Tubbs, Inc. includes Baker Furniture, Baker Knapp & Tubbs Showrooms and Baker Stores. Along with McGuire Furniture Company and Ann Sacks, it is part of the Kohler Interiors Group and a wholly owned subsidiary of Kohler Co., a global leader in kitchen and bath designs. Kohler Co. was founded in 1873. Headquartered in Kohler, Wis., it is one of the oldest and largest privately held companies in the United States.