So I have been doing some reading for classes I am taking to be better at woodworking and business. Some of things I know already, but don't implement and that is a bad thing at least to me. I am ready a business book called rework and talk a lot about how you should be and how you should treat your product. This will show by the people that follow you. Other chapters talk about don't always try to have the most features. I read that and wonder how to apply that to life or my projects or just everyday. What I mean is do I or even we do to much or try to have to many features and where or when will we be satisfied with enough. I don t know just a thought to think on.
Well folks, fall is here. Or Autumn if you prefer to be formal. Here at DW, this is one of our favorite times of the year. It's just the right weather outside for working and playing. Something about fall makes us feel relaxed and free, and then we get lavished by snow a few months later. For now, we will go dive in leaf piles and visit the pumpkin patch with a Radio Flyer wagon in tow.
It's also, for us here, the perfect time for inspiration. A lot of people have that Autumn fantasy: out on the farm, eating food we made off tables we made, as the trees turn slowly into a painting of soft relaxing colors. We can't all live on farms, but it's a nice image when you're in the business we are... particularly when it comes to the furniture.
What is your favorite part of fall the bonfires, the trees turning, pumpkin spice lattes? Let us know in the comments.
In our last blog, we talked about legacies and the impact we leave behind us. Lately I've been thinking about a related idea: community. For a while communities seemed to be disappearing, becoming less unique. We are a business that doesn't just want to make a living in the community, but contribute something special, something that our neighbors and friends can be proud of. We feel like part of the Greater Des Moines Area, and have been for many years. Just like local eateries and shops give off local flavor, we want to make local products.
This extends to giving back. In the coming months we will be looking at ways to help people in need in the Des Moines area. We've had the opportunity to give back before. With the holidays (and colder weather) approaching, people will be in need of a warm heart and open hands, and we want to help out again. The same hands that craft our work can be extended to help people and make our community a better place to live and work.
People talk a lot about legacies and what they mean to them. No matter what I do in life, whether it be my marriage, crafting in the shop, or how I treat my family and friends, I want to leave a positive impact. I don't think it is necessary for everyone to change the world in some massive, showy way. The kindness, or lack thereof, that you exhibit in your daily life, the simple act of how you treat people, the sacrifice of being there for someone even when you aren't having an easy time yourself...these things are every bit as important as fighting a war or making a piece of great art. It is far easier to leave a negative impact than a positive one, and we should all be mindful of the things we do to, and for, those around us.
I've had my look for a long time. I'm a man who works with my hands, and that's what I look like. My friends often compare me to fantasy characters: large build, boots, flannel shirts, a long beard out of a fantasy movie. I know people who think appearances are incredibly important. I know people who don't. I think your appearance should reflect who you really are. I put my heart and soul into my pieces, and I don't wear suits or shave off my beard because when I'm in my workshop, creating great furniture for you, this is what I look like. My customers deserve to know the real me.
When you start a project, what is the first thng you do? When I create a piece of work, the first thing I do is draw up my plans. Then I try to find the pieces that fit in just the right spots to get the effect I want. Every type of wood has a variety of properties. Walnut has beautiful flare marks. Cedar often has lighter, redder tones. All of these change from piece to piece; no two pieces look alike. And if I have pieces that don't fit just right, I save them. There's always another project they are just right for. Nothing goes to waste.
I wrote one of these just a few minutes ago and I think it disappeared somehow. Clearly, I have a lot to learn about website design and management, if my posts are just vanishing into the ether. I'll try again, and maybe this time it'll even sound better. You have to focus on the positive.
These posts will almost always be about the shop, the products, or what projects I am working on. Sometimes I will talk about the business side of things, too. Eventually I'd like to include videos, maybe even of me at work. When Dwarven Workshop has special events going on, we'll talk about those here, as well. In fact, if you go to our Facebook page (here) right now, you can help us think of a motto. Hopefully these blogs will get better as I go along. For now the important thing to say is that Dwarven Workshop is open for business, ready to do great work..