The Guild of Vermont Furniture Makers is a family-oriented organization and we are pleased to announce that within just over a year, our family has grown quite a lot! We are pleased to announce three new little furniture makers, and asked our three fathers how Dad Life has changed their approach to making furniture.
David Lewis isn’t just one of the most recent additions to the Guild, he’s also the newest father! Little Emmy Lewis came into the world in July of 2017 and has been thriving in her first year under the care and tutelage of her family. Being a full time furniture maker with a studio at home means David gets to spend most of his days having fun with Emmy. “She has brought a unique joy to my life,” David says about the happiness he’s found in fatherhood. “Doing simple, every day tasks has become a lot more fun; such as grocery shopping or taking her to the gym for a work out. I really enjoy watching her interact with her surroundings.”
David and Emmy
Fatherhood has changed a lot for David, but he’s loving every minute of it. He gets less time in the shop, but has become more efficient while working. He’s also found a new love for the use of hand tools. He’s always liked hand tools, but has found bonus utility in the reduced noise they make during nap time!
As of March 2017, Matthew Ogelby became a second-time father to little Greta. His first, George, arrived on the scene back in December of 2014. Fatherhood has had a huge impact on Matthew. “Fatherhood has changed who I am,” Matthew says. “For me, becoming a dad really changed my identity and how I perceive myself. Whatever adjectives I used to describe myself before… ‘father’ has moved permanently to the front of that list because that’s the most important job I have.”
Matthew and Greta
Legacy has always been one of the most important aspects of making furniture for Matthew. Creating something that will outlast the maker is one of the best reasons to craft fine furniture. But ever since having kids, the legacy of furniture has taken on a whole new dimension. The children themselves and what he can give them, be it their livelihood, new skills, or heirlooms are now part of his legacy. “I love the idea that they’ll have pieces I’ve made to hand down through our family’s generations.”
Matthew, Greta and George
Greta and George
Matthew and George
At just over a year old – born in November of 2016 – Julianne Gebhardt is a little toddler who has changed the life of her father, Tyler Gebhardt. Julianne has taught Tyler to appreciate the smaller things in life. “Becoming a father has made me realize I need to enjoy the smaller things in life,” Tyler says about his new life as a father, “and not always be in a hurry all the time. It’s important to stop and smell the roses. Seeing the world through my daughters eyes is truly fascinating and gives me such a joy I never knew possible.”
Tyler and Julianne
Tyler finds that he now has greater purpose in life, and in furniture. In their home, they have furniture that was made by Julianne’s great-grandfather, and the importance of furniture that lasts generations has become one of the major driving forces behind Tyler’s work. His motivation to make the best furniture possible is two-fold, not only is the furniture itself getting better and better, but that also helps him provide for his family. Fatherhood has given him even more reason to strive for mastery.