My History

This is my 21st year as a professional furnituremaker. It has been somewhat of a quixotic journey – an interesting way to make a living. Twenty years or so ago, Thomas Moser told me three things that have stuck with me: that I needed to establish my own identity by developing designs that were uniquely mine, that I had to develop a catalog to get the word out, and if I was working full time at building furniture I needed someone working alongside me at all the correlate activities necessary to keep the business afloat: promotion, bookkeeping, ordering, and generally keeping track of things.

I think I’ve succeeded at the first two pieces of Moser’s advice, but haven’t yet accomplished the third. My website, which was preceeded by three print catalogs, has several pieces which have come to be known as “DeKovens”.  Some very helpful friends along the way have been instrumental in putting together the catalogs and website, and my representatives at The Denver Design District, Carter Inc., provide a venue for showing and promoting my work. I piece the remaining tasks together as best I can.

Perhaps the best thing about all this is that four of the five studio/workshops I’ve had over the years have been adjacent to my home. I’ve been there as my two sons, now 18 and 21, have grown up, and I’ve been able to adjust my work schedule accordingly. During their early years I often fell asleep while reading them to sleep, awakened and went back out to work. I was able to see them off to school and be there when they got home after school, and rarely missed any of their extracurricular activities. I feel very lucky to have pulled that off.

If you happen to check out my website you’ll notice that I use the word “we” in referring to my business. This is somewhat of a misnomer, as I am a one man operation. The “we” refers to the essential people who help with the aforementioned correlate activities: My old friend Warren Johnson (we played little league together) who designed my catalogs; Deb Kunert at Carter Inc., my representatives at The Denver Design District; my webmaster, Brian Marshall at Propaganda Inc.; my accountant, Gerry Stewart; several mills and hardwood lumberyards who put up with my painstaking searches for the highest quality lumber; and most importantly, my wife Margaret, who remains my most brutally honest critic and biggest supporter. Her design sense and critical eye inspire much of my work.

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