Karges recreated the carved French Empire masterpiece, inspired by the original Napolean Chaise, a swan armed chair from the Grand Trianon in Versailles.
"I learned from the best"
Growing up around design gave Don an early appreciation for it. In high school he made deliveries for his father’s design studio and while there he studied all the catalogs on the shelves. Don went on to study furniture design at Kendall College of Art and Design in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The exposure he gained while working with his father helped him to understand styles and good design, and meeting the customer’s wants and needs. After graduating, Don began working for Karges Furniture where he had the pleasure of working with Edwin Karges, Sr. "Mr. K" took Don under his wing for what Don considers his journeyman ship. He started making market samples of his designs with the help of the many artisans at Karges, in particular Pete Thompson. Don continued designing under Mr. K until his passing, when he became Karges’ Director of Design, a position he held until 1990. Don has always been grateful for the many things Mr. K taught him about beautiful lines, visual weight, proportion, and ornamentation. He has said that "the knowledge and experience gained working alongside Mr K went beyond anything you could learn at school."