After six years of military service – two spent overseas – I found myself navigating the uncharted waters of civilian life, grappling with the physical and emotional toll that service often leaves behind - an experience all too familiar to my fellow veterans. I yearned for a new outlet, a release from the void feeling that books and games couldn't quite satisfy.
In a twist of fate, my girlfriend, now wife, gifted me a miniature forge built from a couple of firebricks for Christmas. Little did I know that this simple gesture would ignite a passion for blacksmithing - the very same occupation my Great Grandfather performed before and after immigrating to America.
The tolls of Army life caught up with me, including issues like degenerative disc disease and persistent nerve pain, which can make daily tasks significantly more difficult than they should be. And it was because of this that I had to put down the hammer, which also doused my flames of creativity inside. I was fortunate enough, however, to find something else that sparked joy and creativity.
I crossed paths with a friendly leatherworker while at my first craft market and seeing his goods and passion ignited a new spark within me. With support from my loving wife, I threw myself into leatherwork, spending countless hours pouring over videos and forums soaking up all that I could about the craft. I was a man obsessed and thus my business was born in my garage workshop, where it still lives today.
My workspace is humble, and my tools are modest, but they are mine - my sanctuary of creativity and strength. Embracing the craft of leatherworking allows me to be my boss, granting me the flexibility to navigate the unpredictable challenges of my medical conditions.
Each item that leaves my hands carries more than just the mark of craftsmanship, but also the story of a tenacious spirit overcoming obstacles. With every purchase, you become a part of this remarkable journey, helping me to live my American dream.
Thank you for being a part of my story, and for enabling me to turn passion into purpose.