It's peak season for handyman work, and I'm keeping busy...
...making a pair of custom sliding barn doors among other things.
More pics of that to follow!
Meanwhile we still have a bit of fun in the summer, and last weekend I got a chance to indulge another favorite pastime: music. Since this tune is about Asheville, I thought I'd share it here.
I wrote this one when I moved here... could it be 20 years ago already?
Which is how I've gotten to know so many of the best local handymen. Give us a call when you're ready to get your projects done.
August in Asheville is in full swing, and I think it must be ten years since I"ve seen such a cool and pleasant mountain summer. Perfect weather for getting out the motorcycle.
Well, maybe not that one. It only looks like a road warrior! That's from one of the local workshops. I was driving past one day and couldn't resist stopping for a photo. I believe they recycle metal, and clearly they've been putting their scrap to good use.
Speaking of workshops, I thought I'd show you a peek behind the scenes at my cabinet shop. Because although we're still doing lots of handyman work in Asheville, I've been working on a couple of really cool woodworking projects as well. You're going to love these!
Here's the shop...
You can't tell, but there's a creek just outside the window. And there's nothing like turning off the ventilation system for awhile and letting Nature do the work while I assemble a few cabinets and listen to the creek rush by. I've even got an outdoor workbench in the shade for those really nice afternoons.
Those gray boards eventually turned into a pair of bookshelves and a mantel to go around an electric fireplace. This is going in a brand new condo in downtown Asheville. I love these electric fireplaces because they don't require a chimney, so you can put them anywhere.
You might have noticed that I haven't added the crown molding or baseboard on one side. That's because the tobacco poles are getting in the way. That's right... my shop is built into an old tobacco barn. The poles aren't holding anything together... they're just there for sentimental value.
Here's what the shelves will look like when they're installed. We create models like these for most of our handmade cabinets.... it gives you a chance to preview your project before we install it, so you can make changes and get exactly what you want.
Here's another view of the shop... I snapped this one a couple of weeks ago when I was working on another ventless fireplace. You can see it in the back of the room there.
In the foreground you can see why every cabinet shop seems to have a million clamps! Believe it or not, I still plan to buy a few dozen more of them.
Here's a pic of the fireplace mantel that I was clamping. It had a fiery cherry grain and it turned out really well.
It looks great from a distance, too. The homeowner had a set of Craftsman tiles custom made just for this hearth. And as I said, this is another one of those chimneyless fireplaces, so it can go anywhere.
You can see more photos of this Arts and Crafts fireplace on our custom cabinets website. including the inside of the cabinet, which is hiding an entertainment center. It's a great way to disguise your TV.
Or if you're here for handyman work, we can help you with that, too. Just give us a call.
I met him for a cup of coffee and thought he'd be a great fit for Asheville... he's very low-key and easy to talk with. Naturally I called his references, and they were stellar. One guy talked about how Joshua went the extra mile on a long project, and was very patient when they ran into unexpected problems during a big wall repair..
Joshua is a third-generation contractor, and as time has gone by, it's become clear he knows his business well. You can see his work ethic in this before-and-after of a triple-decker porch which he painted in his hometown in Cape May, NJ.
I'll start with the "after." The photo looks like it's black-and-white but I think it was just a cloudy day.
Here's how it looked before he started painting. As you can see, he's already done the prep work by scraping away the loose paint so that the new coat of paint will adhere better.
Here's another "before" of a garage apartment that really needed some TLC.
And here's the "after." He's gone all the way up to the roofline, and the building looks brand new.
That's just a small part of the entire project. He did the whole house. Exterior painting at this height has always given me the heebie-jeebies but it seems that Joshua is fearless. He must have a steady hand even when he's on a tall ladder, because every line is neatly cut in.
He also does cabinet painting using a spray rig. Here are a few doors painted and hanging to dry. I like his set-up with the ladders and hangers. It's a great way to paint all sides of the wood without having to touch it.
Here's the finished kitchen... very fresh and clean. The finishes are very smooth, and he's clearly kept track of the doors and reinstalled them correctly.
All in all, I think he's been a great addition to our network. Our customers seem very happy with him, and I like him too. He's competent and calm, and he returns phone calls and emails in a timely manner... which is a "must" in my book.
If you'd like to work with Joshua, give us a call and we'll put you in touch.
When you have a space in your home that's perfect for built-in bookshelves, it can be tempting to cut corners by getting a factory-made piece from a big box store.
But there are several big differences between factory-made shelving and the real thing. Aside from the obvious features like better materials and a better fit, our custom shelving has one more thing going for it: I always make sure every piece of furniture I build for you is as perfect as I can possibly make it.
In this video, you can see me going over every surface of these shelves with a sharp eye, touching up every little burr with my sander so that the final coat of paint will create a smooth and continuous surface.
Your custom shelving gets the personal attention of a craftsman, and it shows.
That finish is as smooth as butter. You just don't get a paint job like that in a factory made piece, so skip the particle-board shelving and get something solid that will last you a lifetime.
For example, a nice couple in south Asheville called me recently and wanted some drawers installed in these cupboards:
Since my schedule was full, I referred them to Allan.
After talking with the customers, Allan did some research to find high-quality drawers, but in his words, "After looking at what was out there, I knew I could do a better job for the same price."
So he built the drawers himself, and they're amazing! You can't get quality like this from a big-box store. Take a look:
You could load these things up with stuff and they would still work like a charm. And they're really beautiful, too.
Another customer requested a new stair railing to replace a rusting metal one that made their brick stairs into a hazard.
I sent them to Allan because I knew he was the right man for the job. Look at this new railing! It's a showpiece.
He's also got a sharp eye for detail...
...and a knack for making old trim look new again.
When you call us, you're not just calling me... you're getting access to a whole group of talented local handymen with positive attitudes and incredible skills. Whether you need a solid new railing, a hand-crafted storage solution, or the right trim for your room, we're here to help.
Call today to get connected to the right guy for the job.