Grant- Full Interview

Meet Grant

wood shop

MEET GRANT, AKA CHRISTOPHER WALKEN

Don’t let him fool you—that Christopher Walken impression is uncanny. Grant’s our lead carpenter. He’s been with us for the past year and a half, and we’re still amazed with his creativity, patience and skill.

Q: When did you first get into carpentry?

A: About five years ago. I never took a shop class. My grandfather did a fair amount of carpentry. His brother was a fine woodworker. He made grandfather clocks and stuff like that. I couldn’t even read a tape measure five years ago. A really skilled carpenter, Tom Boyes, was probably my first mentor in carpentry. I built myself a platform bed. I thought if I could do that, then I could build an end table. And then I needed a dresser. It just went from there, and people started asking me to do stuff for them.

Q: What do you love about what you do?

A: Being able to visually see your final product. And every day is a challenge, because you’re always learning something new. Alex and Lindsay are the best bosses ever.

Q: What are you working on right now?

A: A pedestal table base for a round outdoor table. It’s my first pedestal base in this style. The structural framing is different. That’s another thing I like about this job—50 percent of the projects I get are something new. I always like a new challenge.

Q: What’s your go-to power tool?

A: Jointer. It’s a tool that makes everything flat. It squares up your board. It’s one of those control things. I didn’t use one until I came here. I don’t know how many times in the past I thought Man, I need something to flatten out this board. Now I have one in the shop.

Q: Favorite thing you’ve ever made?

A: For Valentine’s Day, I built my girlfriend a jewelry box. It was small and very tedious, but it was very gratifying to see the final product. When I was in construction, all of the interior carpenters would throw out their poplar and oak. At the end of the day, I would go dig out some of that lumber that was usable, so I used those free materials on her box. It has three little drawers and an open top on it. It’s whitewashed. The drawers are small, and I was always used to working with big lumber. It took me two months.

Q: Hobbies?

A: I like to go see live music. My friends will find a random band at a venue, so we like to concert hop a little bit. I like Woodlands Tavern a lot, and I typically like little jam bands. I enjoy the outdoors a lot. I used to go hunting and fishing, but I live in the city now, so I haven’t been getting out in the country that much.

Q: Favorite local eats?

A: It changes monthly. Marcella’s. I like Arch City a lot. Press Grill never disappoints. If I feel like spoiling myself, I’ll go to The Avenue and get a nice steak and red wine.

Q: Skill you’d like to learn?

A: Lathing. They turn really fast, and you take a pick to it and you’re able to make round pedestal legs and stuff like that. I’d love to get a lathe in the shop.

Q: Little-known fact about you?

A: I do a great Christopher Walken impression. It’s really Nate who eggs it on a bit. I actually don’t think I do that great of an impression, but he loves it.