Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Krenov on making furniture for 'Those People'

Just wanted to share something I read recently by James Krenov, about what he calls ‘Those People’ and the notion that fine woodworkers often struggle with making furniture for the very rich – because they are among the few who can afford it – and how that isn’t always a pleasant circumstance.
Here are his thoughts on that:
“Traveling reminds me again that there is little or no connection between wealth and that thing called good taste. Nor does money make someone a better person, or a worse person either. What it probably amounts to, for some of us at least, is that we are doing honest work, out best, with feeling in it, and we hope to meet people who will appreciate and want it. Some poor people with whom we get along very well will understand and say that they are sorry, but….
“Another person, of modest means perhaps, might ask to pay a bit at a time, and something tells us to trust him or her. Wealthy people come and ask the wrong questions and we feel so uneasy that some of us just do not care to let them have the piece, But there are also some with money and taste and a simple warmth that gets through our ‘those people” filter: we enjoy telling them about our work, they listen – there is contact, a kind of understanding.
“Nothing else matters, really. It is all about people…the only qualification being that they are the kind of people who do not make us unhappy at our work or about our work – this is vital.” – James krenov (The Impractical Cabinetmaker)
I just liked those words and the sentiment behind them. Hope you do too.

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