Mr M 07I started working with wood in 1974 as a freshman in college. I was working in the theater department at the University of Missouri, and I learned to build with wood.

I cut 2x4s on a radial arm saw (scary!). I drilled holes to attach wooden legs on platforms that had to be sturdy enough for multiple actors to stand on. I used yankee screwdrivers to connect pieces together with screws (and that was frequently a painful experience … I will never use a yankee screwdriver again!). I graduated with my degree … and left woodworking behind for all of about 5 months.

Mr M 04With our first apartment, I needed a place to put all of our albums (remember those?). I build bookcases out of pine and plywood. I bought a small power saw and carpenter’s square. I still have them, though both are not in very good shape at this point.

When we became home owners, we bought a fixer upper … and that meant I had a lot of work to do. I installed a patio cover and wooden fence as I learned more about carpentry. A picnic set followed soon after. I really didn’t consider myself a woodworker yet, but that would change with our second house. It soon lost its garage when I bought a table saw and built a lumber rack for all of the red oak that I needed. Eventually, I built:

  • space saver closets
  • a breakfast nook
  • patio furniture
  • two loft beds
  • kitchen cabinets for our “studs out” kitchen remodel
  • an entertainment center
  • end tables
  • desk and bookcases
  • credenza

Mr M 06Life changed in 2013, when two of the Mrs M’s (my wife Velda and daughter-in-law Alley) decided to create Mrs M’s Handmade and begin selling small batch lotion products at local craft fairs. Since I was drafted to carry everything for the ladies, I had no choice but to participate. I volunteered to contribute the cutting boards, cheese boards and serving pieces featured on this website. Our first sales event was March 22, 2014, and on that day I sold my first handcrafted cheese board.

I’ve since discovered that most of the cutting boards sold at retail these days are made to fail. I’ve used my knowledge of woodcraft to create cutting boards and cheese boards that are both unique and functional. And, as long as people keep liking what I do well enough to buy them, I’m going to keep building things!

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