I have been working on a new project with my Sister called strumfactory.com . The project phase 1 is me teaching my sister how to make instruments which we will sell. Phase 2 is to travel and teach others how to make instruments. I have already started this with Peter Park at Peters Valley Craft School. My sister came to my house for 1 week in June to learn how to mill cut and steam bend parts. Now I am at her house in Saint Petersburg Florida where we are shaping, sanding, and finishing. Of course our work is sprinkled with walks and bike rides. Here are some pictures.
My Sister and I are really having fun here in Saint Petersburg. We have been riding our bikes miles everyday. We are getting her shop set up while making instruments. Yesterday we started finishing instruments. Today we start fretting!
In October 2014, I met my sister, Beth, in Maine for a woodworking class at the Center For Furniture Craftsmanship. She was teaching a wood turning class, and I was a student in a basic joinery class. She brought along some interesting guitars she’d been making out of found objects. For two weeks, we sat in our little apartment every night after class learning how to play beginner guitar songs using her novelty instruments. We had a blast!
We both continued with our guitar exploration after we returned to our respective homes. We also added ukulele, mandolin, and dulcimer stick to that exploration. I just practiced incessantly–Beth practiced and started making instruments. She made guitars, tenor guitars, ukuleles and dulcimer sticks.
She received such positive feedback from her dulcimer stick, that she started working more with the design–trying to come up with an instrument that was artistically pleasing to look at and had a great sound. When she finally came up with “the one”, she sent me a sample and I loved it!
Last week, I flew up to Boston and spent a week with Beth learning how to make her new design, “The Strumpet”. We milled, cut, steamed, shaped, glued and sanded all week and here are some pictures. We didn’t completely finish all of them, but divided them up to finish at home or together in November.