Why Did I Write This Blog? I wrote this blog to share some woodworking wisdom gained over the years and also lessons learned from starting my own woodworking business in 2015.
But first, let me give you a bit of backstory. In 2014 I finished up a year-long deployment to Afghanistan. We were extremely busy when I was there, but a situation like that gives a person some time to think about their future, especially since we were away from our families. At that point in my career, I had been in the military for 25 years and was approaching one last assignment before retirement. With our military pension, I knew we were not going to starve and that there was a golden opportunity to try something new. I kept thinking “if money was no object, what would I like to do as the next act?”
One of the things I’ve always enjoyed is woodworking. Ever since my first Industrial Arts class in middle school I’ve enjoyed making things. Our itinerant lifestyle and postings all over the world have made it difficult to set up a permanent shop and outfit it with quality tools. We have been in one spot here in Northern Virginia for a while which has enabled me to carve out some space for a shop and to invest in tools.
Another thing I’ve always wanted to do is start my own business, which I did with Traughber Design in 2015. The commissions have been steady and the business has a bright future. Writing this blog may help some other budding entrepreneurs out there get started on their dream business. We’ve learned a lot about things like pricing our work and will share those tips. In addition, I’m ramping up this woodworking gig part-time as my career winds down. I’ll share some insights learned about how to manage that transition.
Last, I would be remiss if I didn’t give a special shoutout to Kevin Hanson. He was the catalyst who pushed me to attempt the first commission, the black walnut gun cabinet pictured above. The cabinet was from a plan I purchased from Wood Magazine, was a challenge, and great confidence builder.
So that is why I started his blog. I hope you like it.