We are so thankful to be celebrating our 40th anniversary this year. Thanks to our dedicated team and wonderful community of customers and partners, The Joinery continues to create handcrafted furniture that is here for good. As part of our celebration, we are featuring members of our team and unique aspects of our process throughout the year.

Celebrating Bruce's 20 years at The Joinery as a finisher

A lot has changed over The Joinery’s 40-year history, but for the last two decades one thing has remained the same: Bruce. Our longest tenured employee, Bruce joined us in 2002 as a Finisher and has been with us ever since.

Bruce contributes to the Finish team in many ways. He has mastered the nuance of finishing Joinery furniture to its silky-smooth final state. He plays an important role in training new members of the team. He builds small parts and crates. And if customers ever find that a piece of their furniture needs to be spruced up a bit? They just bring it back to us and Bruce takes it from there. After all, he didn’t get his nickname “Sprucey” by accident.

Bruce celebrating 20 years at The Joinery

Although he’s seen it all during his time with The Joinery, Bruce appreciates the continuous challenges. “The days are never the same,” he says. “After twenty years in the Finish department, I find that there is a new challenge every day that keeps you engaged.”

Bruce, a finisher at The Joinery celebrates 20 year anniversary

Bruce continues, “It’s great to come to work at a place where people care about the furniture they build. The Finish department takes great pride in making sure the furniture we send out the door is the highest quality.”

Besides being our longest-tenured employee, Bruce is just an all-around great guy. He is a fan of seafood as well as good wine. And when he's not watchign the Blazers or Seahawks play, he's probably out, fishing, clamming or crabbing.

Thanks Bruce for your contributions for half of our 40 years!

The Joinery is excited to announce a limited offering of new furniture designs to extend the legacy of a 257-year-old Oregon Oak tree, while helping preserve the fragile oak ecosystem in the Willamette Valley. 

Legacy Oregon Oak

Although the story of this remarkable tree originally began in 1765, we will pick it up more recently, in January 2017. That’s when Ben Deumling, the owner of Zena Forest Products , was put in touch with a woman who grew up on a family farm on the Little Luckiamute River, just south of Monmouth in Oregon’s Willamette Valley. The woman’s 85-year-old mother still lived on the farm, and her sister lived in a house next door.

The woman wanted to work with Zena on a forest thinning and reforestation plan for trees on the farm. She hoped to use some of the lumber in a home she was building on the Oregon Coast, as well as to make tabletops for other members of her family so that the trees could live on in a different form. Zena would process any remaining lumber and offer it for sale.

The Oregon Legacy tree before downing.

TThe family worked with a local logger to implement their plan. Among the trees removed was a very large, old Oregon Oak tree. Its top was dying and it was clear that it was at the end of its life, so it needed to be taken down. As the Zena team began to process the tree, they were shocked to discover that it was 257 years old, and of stunning quality. Ben noted that it is by far the oldest tree that Zena has ever worked with. Most oak trees in Oregon are less than 175 years old, and the lumber from this tree is easily distinguishable from other oaks.

Oregon Legacy Oak

When Ben realized this, he contacted The Joinery to see if we would be interested in using the trunk of this incredible tree to build incredible furniture. With it being such stunning quality, he wanted to keep the entire lot together.  We were happy to oblige, and now to transform the lumber from this phenomenal tree into our Legacy Oregon Oak pieces.

Milling our Legacy Oak

Once the lumber arrived at The Joinery, our team was as blown away by the quality and character of the tree as Ben was. We thought that creating new designs using this Oregon Oak would be the perfect way to commemorate our 40th anniversary and continue the legacy of this remarkable tree.

Our Furniture Designer, Taryn developed new designs for a Legacy Coffee Table and Legacy End Table. We are also building Live Edge Dining Tabletops that can be paired with the base of customer choice. We wanted to create designs that showcased the beauty and incredible grain character of the two-inch thick Oak slabs. See photos and more information on the Legacy Oak Coffee Table here and Legacy Oak End Tables here; to see photos of our additional Legacy boards click here

Oregon Legacy Oak End Table

We are pleased to donate a percentage of sales of these amazing pieces to the Oregon Oak Accord, which protects and restores the oak habitat in the fragile Willamette Valley ecosystem.

Oregon Legacy Oak Coffee Table Detail of Oregon Legacy Oak Occasional Table

We currently have finished pieces at our Downtown Portland showroom, and lumber for tabletop layouts at both our Downtown and St. Johns showrooms. Please call (503) 788-8547 x 1 for further information or to come see in person.

Celebrating 40 years of handcrafted Furniture

We are so thankful to be celebrating our 40th anniversary this year. Thanks to our dedicated team and wonderful community of customers and partners, The Joinery continues to create handcrafted furniture that is here for good. As part of our celebration, we are featuring members of our team and unique aspects of our process throughout the year.

Celebrating 40 years of handcrafted furniture, featuring our builder Levi

Training new Craftspeople with Levi

Critical to our success over the years is training new Craftspeople as they join our team. Even the most skilled woodworkers have a learning curve as they work to understand our specific quality standards and processes for creating beautiful hardwood furniture. Levi, who has been with The Joinery since 2017, wears many hats as a Shop Lead, Lead Table Builder, and chief trainer. He recently spearheaded the effort to overhaul the onboarding process for new builders on our Table Team that now serves as a model for our other product teams.

In celebration of our 40th anniversary we connected with Levi about not only his craft, but also his passion for helping others. “Training and mentorship is such an important part of what we do at The Joinery, and woodworkers holistically,” he says. “I learned the ins and outs of furniture building with The Joinery and had a lead builder showing me the way. To this day, I still do certain operations or build certain pieces with his voice in my head. I feel a great sense of duty to not only pass on the building of timeless furniture, but all the foundational knowledge that has helped The Joinery for forty years.”

Levi building a table at The Joinery

An important aspect of the training process is to understand how new employees learn best, and use that knowledge to guide them appropriately. Recently Levi has led the effort to develop training documents for individual products to be used in conjunction with hands-on training. While training new Craftspeople, Levi balances support and oversight with the freedom for new team members to move ahead on their own. He brings a great mix of technical and people skills to his work, and has been a critical part of our team for many years.

“What I like most about my job is that it rarely feels like a job,” Levi says. “It is fulfilling, and the results of my work are tangible. I can sit back at the end of the day and physically see what I accomplished. I also love watching builders grow throughout their careers. It’s really fun to see people go from ‘deer in the headlights’ apprentices, to crafting beautiful, high level pieces and even passing on their knowledge that they learned along the way to new folks.”

Levi approaches each piece with very high expectations for quality and aesthetic beauty. “I’m never completely happy with how a piece turns out. I will be very nitpicky and hard on myself about some small detail and then hear back that the customer loved everything about it. I guess it helps to not be satisfied because it keeps you believing you can always do better and gives you motivation and focus for the next piece.”

Levi’s commitment and dedication over the years has paved the way for not just his own success in the company, but that of other as well.

Thanks, Levi, for your role in helping develop skilled Craftspeople who continue the tradition of creating handcrafted furniture that’s here for good.

The Joinery is proud of our partnerships with two Portland-area high schools to help further the woodworking aspirations of young students. In person events and tours for these programs were on hiatus for the last years due to COVID-19 but we are excited that we have opened it back up to help support our youth.   

Student from Sabin-Schellenberg tour The Joinery woodshop

We are so thankful to be celebrating our 40th anniversary this year. Thanks to our dedicated team and wonderful community of customers and partners, The Joinery continues to create handcrafted furniture that is here for good. As part of our celebration, we are featuring members of our team and unique aspects of our process throughout the year.

The Joinery celebrating 40 year anniversary: Story feature of Angel

The Finishing process with Angel

It takes a trained eye and a passion for details to be a part of our Finish Team at The Joinery, as these last steps are critical for enhancing the natural beauty and durability of each piece. These skills are exemplified by Angel. His love of working with wood, dedication to quality, and a great personality have made him a true gem in our company for nearly a decade.  

After our Craftspeople build, assemble and sign each piece, it is turned over to our Finish department. Under the bright lights, each piece is inspected, and then the sanding process begins. It is meticulous work, and where we often find Angel. When he first started at The Joinery, he was surprised at how the variety of wood species we offer respond to our process. Each species has different characteristics that require a slightly different approach to ensure we bring out the best qualities of the wood. 

Finisher at The Joinery: Angel

Once each piece is methodically sanded, it moves onto the most revealing step, applying our natural oil finish. It is in this phase that the true color and wood grain really come to life. “People would be surprised how different tones come out after applying oil, even though the wood is all from the same tree,” Angel says. Even after nine years with The Joinery and finishing thousands of pieces, he still gets excited to see how the piece is transformed once oil is applied.

Next, the furniture is hand-sanded and a final beeswax finish is applied to give each piece its silky-smooth hand feel. This process not only lets the natural beauty of the wood come through, but it also allows for easy repair from dents and scratches that inevitably happen to furniture that is built to last for decades. 

When speaking to Angel about his years working at The Joinery, he says he has experienced a lot of changes – from new furniture designs, new team members, and now a new woodshop location – but a constant for him is his love for working with wood. 

Thank you, Angel, for celebrating our 40th anniversary with us, and to many more years to come. 

Finisher at The Joinery Angel

After a two year hiatus due to COVID, The Joinery is excited to be partnering again with students enrolled in the Architecture and Design program at Sabin-Schellenberg, a professional technical high school serving the North Clackamas school district, to showcase and auction their innovative creations made from scrap lumber donated by The Joinery. Students will use industry leading 3D modeling software and digital manufacturing equipment to convert scrap wood into consumer products such as puzzles, lamps, and artwork.

Sabin-Schellenberg auction

Please visit our downtown showroom between April 22nd and May 15th to see all the amazing projects and bid on your chance to win one of them. All proceeds from the silent auction will be donated back to the program.  

One of the things we enjoy most about our work is our relationships with other Portland makers, many of which have been cultivated over years of working together. After a temporary pause due to the pandemic, in the past several months we have developed new partnerships with home good makers, whose wares we are excited to feature in our Showrooms.

The Joinery new Portland Makers

The last year has been challenging for all of us as we have navigated through the pandemic. We are deeply grateful to our customers for the opportunity to build so many beautiful pieces to enhance their homes over that time. Below are just a few of the photos we have received from our customers.

The Whitman Dining Table, Whitman Bench, and Whitman Dining Chairs in Eastern Walnut. 

The Hayden Dining Table and Hayden Chairs in Western Walnut with Maple accents

The Whitman Dining Table, and Whitman Dining Chairs in Eastern Walnut and a Bishop sideboard in Cherry

A custom Hayden Dining Table and Klamath stacking chairs in Western Walnut with Maple accents

If you have photos of your Joinery furniture that you would like to share with our team please email them here

Our company and products have always been a reflection of our great team of employees. Throughout the coronavirus pandemic our team, many of whom are pictured here, has been incredibly thoughtful about preventing the spread of the virus. The new realities have changed how we operate, but not the care and consideration we hold for each other, our customers, and the products we take so much pride in creating. During this challenging time we have been inspired by the incredible support of our customers.

The Joinery team

Below are just a few of their heartwarming messages here.

"Your beautiful artworks grace every room of our home, and gives us quiet joy every day." 

"Thank you times a thousand for all your help in making the piece happen; it'll be something my partner and I cherish for many decades yet to come." 

"We have gotten so much pleasure from the two pieces of furniture you made for us...most recently the breakfast room table that Kyle made.  We admire it continuously throughout the day, and consider ourselves particularly fortunate to have gotten delivery before the shutdown." 

"During this time of quarantine many are taking the time to reflect on friendships and kindnesses from past years.  I just received your newsletter via e mail. I thought about you all AND the fact that I had just spend yesterday lovingly cleaning/lightly oiling my GORGEOUS dining table and 10 chairs made by you nearly 25 years ago.  We LOVE it and have from the start.  Having it made “specifically for us” allowed it to be exactly what we wanted and has not failed us over the years!  It's as beautiful as the day you delivered it."

If you would like to share your Joinery moments with us please email your note here

During the ongoing protests of police brutality against African Americans and the killing of George Floyd, The Joinery’s downtown Portland showroom was vandalized and looted. While this was unfortunate, The Joinery supports the millions of peaceful protesters across the country and around the world who are speaking out against the ongoing injustices faced by African Americans and other people of color. We are encouraged by the strength of the response and look forward to helping build a society where there is truly justice for all. To read a letter from our CEO click here

Inside our Showroom