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Project by Drewskie posted 07-04-2009 07:41 PM 2300 views 1 time favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

About five years ago, shortly after I had gone out on my own, a woman had approached me about building some custom store displays. We met up and I gave here an estimate on what it would cost to build and install the displays. Quickly she realized it would be way beyond what she had budgeted. After some value engineering and price slashing, I did this entire job for about $12g’s, less than half of what I had originally estimated. Although to me it was not about the profit factor, it was about doing a one of a kind project and building my portfolio as a custom woodworker.
So the work commenced cutting and profiling the apple ply with a pattern cutter on the shaper, vacuum forming the decorative Chem Metal curved panels, casting the 750lb concrete shires, welding steel, shaping and polishing plexi glass, and sticking down the laminate. Me and by brother worked vigorously for three weeks right up to when we needed to install. We worked through the night on a 45 hour shift to install the project.
In the end we exceeded every ones expectations including the architects. Then the store was only opened a year and then closed. There was some serous sweet blood and tears on this project, but was a great bonding experience for me and my brother. There were no regrets even when I did the numbers at the end of the job and I found out that I made a whopping $3.50 an hour. I still show people this project to show off our custom capabilities.


Andrew Prather

-- I cut it three times and its still to short?

9 comments so far

View patron's profile


13606 posts in 3366 days

#1 posted 07-04-2009 08:10 PM

beautiful work !
most of our best work we only get to starve for ,
my first restaurant , i made $5.00 an hour ,
and today it is in the city historical places .
( trident restaurant – sausalito , cal. )
i wrote them a letter the other day ,
nobody ever heard of me ,
as everyone that even worked one day there ,
” built the trident ”
and is still tacking all the credit.
my question to them was ,
what have you done after that ?
not 1 answer so far .
my position is simple ,
they can have all the ” credit ”
they want .
i have the experience in my hands ,
and in my heart !
so continue on my friend , and you will get to do more and better yet !

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View isetegija's profile


763 posts in 3540 days

#2 posted 07-04-2009 08:15 PM

Wow , a really unique design and very well done.
Your pictures show your fine craftsmanship.
And I liked Your website , specially the before-after part , very professional .

Thanks for an enjoyable experience and welcome to Lumberjocks community.

-- Not my woodworking

View Greg Wurst's profile

Greg Wurst

794 posts in 3857 days

#3 posted 07-04-2009 09:51 PM

Those boutique businesses are almost doomed to fail. Fantastic work, though. Too bad you couldn’t go back and some of it with you after they closed.

-- You're a unique and special person, just like everyone else.

View SCOTSMAN's profile


5849 posts in 3610 days

#4 posted 07-04-2009 10:25 PM

That’s a nice looking job you did Drewskie well done. So sorry you did not make a fair wage on it,but I believe woodworkers should stick to their guns a bit more on pricing.The public will always want things cheaper so once you start to drop your prices by a significant amount then there is no stopping the ball from rolling.Take care buddie.And also good one Patron they can’t rob your brain or the content of your heart well put.kindest regards Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

View a1Jim's profile


117115 posts in 3602 days

#5 posted 07-04-2009 10:45 PM

Hey Andrew this is a outstanding project with obvious high end craftsmanship both in design and a solid build.
These low hourly dollar returns sometimes turn out to be our best advertisements for many more jobs.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Drewskie's profile


53 posts in 3280 days

#6 posted 07-04-2009 10:53 PM

To me it wasn’t about the money, it was a chance to do something out of the ordinary. I love showing this off to future clinets.

-- I cut it three times and its still to short?

View POPSHOP's profile


125 posts in 3276 days

#7 posted 07-05-2009 01:50 AM

Good work !


View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 3799 days

#8 posted 07-05-2009 04:23 AM

Very impressive work! Thanks for posting.

God Bless

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View Mytoya's profile


212 posts in 3240 days

#9 posted 08-11-2009 06:35 PM

Beautiful work!

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