theluthierblog: making guitars for a living, making guitars for pleasure
The idea for theluthierblog came to me after a few conversations with fellow guitar makers who because of past experiences had given up trying to share what they’d learned with others about lutherie. That’s a real shame. So I thought it would be good to have a place where experienced luthiers could share what they’ve learned, where we could examine just what is going on in lutherie today.
And then there was a conversation I had in 2013 with a very talented amateur guitar maker who had a house full of guitars and was starting to wonder if he’d ever sell one. So it seemed a good idea to write a bit about the business side of making, repairing and selling guitars.
The blog ran for just over a year – truth was I found out I wasn’t very good at selling the advertising needed to keep it going – but all that hard work hasn’t gone to waste – you can buy the whole blog in ebook form, along with a great ebook about running your workshop so it doesn’t run you – “Making a living in lutherie:from amateur to professional.”
In putting theluthierblog together, I’ve been really taken back by the openness and generosity of some of the worlds top makers.
As for me? I began making guitars for a living in 1988 as an apprentice to a luthier called Stefan Sobell. Apart from a couple of years in the early 90’s and a couple of short part time stints with furniture makers, this is how I’ve made my living.
I opened my own workshop in 2004.
Much of what I’ve written in TLB is based on direct observation of friends in the trade, and from situations I’ve found myself in. I’m sharing what I’ve learned and I hope it helps you gain a fresh look at old issues.