Forest 2 Home is fortunate to have an array of woodworkers in the F2H community: beginners to experts, furniture makers to wood carvers, younger and older makers alike! We asked two young makers in the F2H community to share their woodworking experience with us. Annalee and Joshua each started their woodworking journey at a younger age than most (11-years-old and 12-years-old respectively), leading to incredible talent that leaves us in awe! Read on to hear their workshop journey from start to now!
Annalee Stevens, 15-year-old woodworker
“I started when I was 11 years old and wanted to make a Christmas gift for my Mawmaw instead of buying one. I looked on Pinterest and found a charcuterie type board and asked my dad if he would help me make it. He said yes but at the time we had very minimal woodworking tools; just the basic things someone would need for home improvement projects. I made that charcuterie board well and then my other Grandma wanted one. I told dad that I wanted to try one with the boards glued together with different woods, so we found some hardwood pallets! I made one for my grandma, one for a friends mom and then someone said they would buy one and it just kind of grew from there.
It has been a lot of fun because I’m not just learning from my dad and Pawpaw but we are learning together. Slowly, I made some money and have been able to upgrade or buy a new tool, to make things easier (of course, Dad and Pawpaw have helped a lot in that department-Dad says I am subsidized by the bank of Pawpaw!).
I have made such great friends in the maker community, not just makers but companies which have been so kind to me. Without them I would not have been able to grow Annie’s Woodworks.”
Joshua Ludwig, 16-year-old woodworker
“Hi I am Joshua Ludwig, a 16-year-old woodworker. I started my woodworking journey 4 years ago in middle school shop class where I fell in love with woodworking. I made a spice rack, bird house, baseball bats and a few breakfast trays, just to name a few class projects. One day, my dad asked if I could make my brothers a baseball home plate ring holder-my brothers play travel baseball and receive rings when they win tournaments. After looking up a few ideas for the design, I made the ring holder for my brothers. My mom posted it on social media and people started asking if I could make one for their baseball or softball player, or if I could make a medal holder. This was the start of my business. With the help of my family, I was able to buy the tools I needed to fulfill my orders and since, I have sold approximately 70 ring and medal holders.
Over the past 5 years, I have felt a sense of accomplishment by being able to afford to buy other tools and materials I need to expand my business. A tip I’d like to share with anyone interested in starting up a woodworking hobby would be to never be afraid to ask for help. When I have reached out with questions or looked for tips, the woodworking community has been eager to help and share their knowledge.”
Find more of Joshua’s work by following along his Instagram page @JJL_Woodworks.
The benefits of starting young in the workshop are insurmountable-if you need more proof than Annalee and Joshua’s talent, check out our blog on the Benefits of Woodworking with Children.
Want to share your own woodworking journey with Forest 2 Home? Email firstname.lastname@example.org! Happy woodworking!