Texas is in the house!
A few years back, I came across a fellow on YouTube that made furniture. His videos were different and his work was excellent. He didn’t speak in these videos, he just worked. I soon came to know him as Andy Rawls, custom furniture builder in Borene, TX. When I started this podcast, I knew Andy was one of the people of wanted to chat with. His style of building was very appealing to me and I wanted to know about him and how he became a custom furniture builder.
Today, Andy works out of a 2400 square foot shop along with his apprentice, Ryan. Andy describes his style as “old Texas”, and I would have to agree. His Watford Trestle Table is my favorite piece with his Brenham Settee running a very close second. Andy’s style was derived from many years of cabinet making and schooling in the form of jobs, classes with Paul Sellers and Frank Strazza and apprenticeships with one of the countries premium chair makers, Brian Boggs. While Andy admits you don’t have to go to school to become a custom furniture builder, it definitely helped him and he highly suggests you try it out.
One of the main things I got from chatting with Andy, he’s very persistent. He tried business and failed, but never gave up. He strengthened his skills and eventually gave it another shot and he’s been very successful for the past five years. I like how Andy says to “focus on the best possible work you can do”. That hits close to home because I may not know how to do everything, but I give it my all. I take the time to learn and then apply that knowledge to produce a result I can be proud of. Remember, you may have to make things that aren’t very exciting or glamorous, but those things pay the bills. We all have to pay our dues, if you know what I mean. Remember the words of another Andy, Andy Birkey from episode 048, “sometimes we make art, sometimes we make rent”!
I’m so happy I was able to chat and learn from Andy. It was such a treat. If you have any questions or comments about episode 052 make sure to leave a comment below. Andy has been generous enough to give a shirt to one lucky listener that will be chosen from the comments below. So don’t miss out!
The randomly chosen winner from the comments below for a sweet tee from Andy