Woven 3 Design
One-of-a-kind interiors, built to last
With every project he takes on, Johnny Neal, founder of Woven 3 Design, redefines the possibilities of concrete in design. Because of its innate properties that make it so malleable in form, concrete offers a unique and creative solution to any aspect of the home. “Concrete naturally takes the shape of the mold it is poured into; if you have a design in mind that you want to see come to life, we can do that with concrete,” shares Neal. With a background in drafting and design, Neal conscientiously approaches each work with a holistic view of the entire design to deliver unique, high-quality pieces. “I really like to push concrete to its highest potential. My goal is always to come up with something different that no one else has done,” notes Neal. Neal’s long history of working with concrete gives him a deep knowledge of the ins and outs of its materiality, and his dedication to producing original pieces allows him to offer high-end designs to create homes that are truly one-of-a-kind.
“I really like to push concrete to its highest potential. My goal is always to come up with something different that no one else has done.”
–Johnny Neal, Founder, Woven 3 Design
Neal began working with architectural concrete in 2008 and has done everything from countertops to kitchen and bath remodels, as well as decorative and structural concrete. He also went to school for architectural drafting and graphic design, so composition, drawing, and drafting has always been an essential part of his creative work. Working closely with concrete for the last 11 years has provided Neal with a front-row seat to the advances the material itself has experienced and with it a strong understanding for its nuances. “Ten years ago, concrete mix design was limited to the bag mixes you’d get from Home Depot, still reinforced with rebar, and requiring routine polishing. Now we have glass fiber-reinforced concrete, which lets us pour to thicknesses as thin as one inch. The density, compressive strength, and flexural strength are all higher now too,” explains Neal.
With its breadth of applications, the options for what concrete can become are endless. “Concrete can replace any building material that you would have otherwise spec’d out in a home such as tile, outdoor cladding, floor and wall treatments. I’ve even done a home where we clad a wall with tiles to give it a monolithic look, to look as if the wall was cast in place,” shares Neal. Concrete has unique strengths in both interior and exterior applications and Neal’s background in the industry is invaluable when it comes to designing concrete for either of these environments. “The mixes I use are resistant to cracking in freeze-thaw conditions. Because the thermal coefficient of expansion of the fibers within the concrete is the same as the concrete itself, it all moves together, preventing any chance of cracking. Anytime I have two materials outdoors, I incorporate area for expansion into the design,” explains Neal. Neal’s work disproves any rumors of concrete’s limitations, as he explains that any issues with concrete are due to improper application. “Done right, concrete is as durable as any other material. My work has been out in the valley the longest, and it is all still there,” adds Neal.
“Concrete can replace any building material that you would have otherwise spec’d out in a home such as tile, outdoor cladding, floor and wall treatments.”
–Johnny Neal, Founder, Woven 3 Design
With continued inspiration and training from world leaders in the creative concrete business, Neal has the tools to offer anything imaginable and then some. “We routinely do trainings with Cody Carpenter of Plan B Studio. Cody is the best in the business. With a minimalist, modern aesthetic, and a crisp, clean eye for design, working with Cody and the groups he brings together inspires me to continue producing work that no one else has ever done,” shares Neal. Beyond traditional square angles created with wood forms, in using rubber or plaster casting, concrete can take the shape of anything you can creatively build a form with. “A couple years ago, we poured a rubber mold over a tree stump, inverted it to re-form it with epoxy fiber and fiberglass resin; we made a concrete tree stump you could put in your yard, that would literally last forever. You can’t do that with any other material,” Neal shares excitedly.
Each project has its own challenges, the most rewarding of which for Neal is when he turns the corner from conceptual to tangible. “That moment of realization, when you figure out how you’re going to do this thing that has never been done before, is what keeps me going day in and day out,” reflects Neal. Neal shares some details of a project he’s currently working on, with intricacies and depth of design that exceed imagination. “The project involves multiple shower enclosures and shower pans, of which the master shower enclosure will have the vanity waterfall into the shower, creating shelving for soaps and shampoos inside of the shower. The glass wall for the shower enclosure goes through that waterfall, separating the rest of the vanity as it waterfalls through,” explains Neal.
“That moment of realization, when you figure out how you’re going to do this thing that has never been done before, is what keeps me going day in and day out.”
Johnny Neal, Founder, Woven 3 Design
Neal takes his clients’ ideas and customizes them in a fresh way. That’s why they come to him. “People aren’t paying for something you can get from Pier One Imports. It is my duty to make something that no one else is going to have,” states Neal. Neal shares design ideas with his clients through 3D renderings. “The best thing about 3D renderings is that you can rotate around and zoom, really envision the design and get a full picture of what it’s going to be,” shares Neal. To bring such originality to life requires a depth of knowledge of the material, a creative mind to conceptualize it, and the ability to articulate that to clients to work the design through, all of which are integral parts to Neal’s skill set. Neal combines his design vision with his years of experience with concrete to deliver on his ultimate mission—providing the details that make a home truly unique.