|Chuck Lakin (above) fashions coffins that can serve as entertainment centers (below) and bookcases (bottom).|
Is that a coffin in the den?
Woodworker Chuck Lakin makes caskets that double as furniture, before their final use.
If you happen to visit Gini Landry’s home in Waterville, Maine, you’ll meet a vivacious, almost-octogenarian with an acute wit and a decades-long dedication to quilting. And if you’re curious, she’ll show you some of her needle-and-thread creations, 20 or 30 of them, folded up and displayed in a roughly 5-foot-tall rack in her guest bedroom. And if you’re even more curious, she’ll point out that that very case has a double purpose: when the final hour comes, it will convert into her coffin. “I’m four-foot, 11-inches tall, and shrinking,’’ the 79-year-old said with a wry grin. “It’s made to fit me.’’ That’s right: Every day, Landry is confronted, quite explicitly, with her own mortality, with a custom-made coffin now serving as a quilt rack and situated conveniently in her home for that fateful day that comes for all of us.