I am pleased to have you meet Fred Heenie of Custom Kneelers. Sit back and enjoy the beautiful handiwork  and learn a bit about this very talented artisan.

Please Introduce yourself to the team.

Hi, I’m Fred and I work wood and offer custom made kneelers, step stools and laptop desks on ETSY. I also make custom designed and crafted hardwood furniture. Bed room furniture and home offices seem to be my most popular items, off line. I work in the old world disciplines and use hard joints such as mortise and tenon, dowels and dovetails. I do use machinery for milling most projects but those projects are hand fitted and finished. I had made a few custom kneelers and found the niche rewarding and relaxing and decided that smaller items, items that were somewhat easy to ship might be a great introduction to Internet selling. That lead me to ETSY where I am trying to get through a maze of challenges that are new to me. Today I still take commissions for custom dining room, bedroom and home office furniture at my shop. I have added step stools and lap top desks to my exclusive ETSY listing where they sell well. My contemporary step stools are my best sellers and I am often asked to make special sizes and finishes, which I am please to do.

How did you name your shop? 

There was never a question about a shop name, my first attempt at Internet sales was to create a web site of my own because I had such experience in a former life. My web site is www.customkneelers.com. When I discovered ETSY and checked it out there was no question that I should market my niche on this site. customkneelers.com is now a support site for my ETSY shop.

Tell us a bit about your typical day.

I am retired and also have a part time job providing tech support and web services for a furniture hardware manufacturer. My tech job requires only a few hours every day and my hours are generally based on when the phone rings or I get an email. Because I am located in Arizona where it gets very warm, I start between 5 and 6 everyday , 6 days a week ,so I can work before it gets too hot or because I go to early church services on Sundays. Mornings are spent in the shop and afternoons are for administration and design work in CAD.

If you could be anywhere in the world for one day, where would it be?

I traveled internationally for a living so travel is not very high on my list but I do plan to move to Texas to be near family as soon as I sell my home.

What is your favorite Bible Verse?

All of Matthew 7 and specifically 7:12 - 20
 "Therefore, whatever you want others to do for you, do also the same for them-this is the Law and the Prophets. Enter through the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the road is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who go through it.How narrow is the gate and difficult the road that leads to life, and few find it. Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravaging wolves. You'll recognize them by their fruit. Are grapes gathered from thorn bushes or figs from thistles? In the same way, every good tree produces good fruit, but a bad tree produces bad fruit. A good tree can't produce bad fruit; neither can a bad tree produce good fruit.  Every tree that doesn't produce good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. So you'll recognize them by their fruit."

Submitted by Zuda Gay Pease, www.ZudaGay.etsy.com

Comments (8)

On September 5, 2012 at 9:05 AM , Aloquin said...

A well-worded interview! Such a pleasure to meet you, Fred! I love it when people still handcraft items. I love Frank Lloyd Wright, and the Arts and Crafts movement. It is people like you, my friend, who are keeping true pieces of art (opposed to commercially mass-produced furniture) alive. Keep it up, and may God continue to bless your diligence!

On September 5, 2012 at 3:35 PM , (Ri)Charmed said...

Beautiful workmanship!

On September 5, 2012 at 5:55 PM , Cynthia Stevenson said...

This is wonderful workmanship, Fred. You are an exceptional artist! Blessings to you!

On September 6, 2012 at 8:23 AM , Faith Caroline said...

You work is lovely!

On September 6, 2012 at 8:33 AM , bananaorangeapple said...

I am very impressed with your craftsmanship, and you seem to be a very hard worker too, what an asset to our team.

On September 6, 2012 at 9:48 AM , SHEILA said...

Such beautiful items. Nothing else compares to hand crafted wood furniture. Everything is so well made. Thanks for sharing.

On September 6, 2012 at 10:09 PM , Deb (Two Cheeky Monkeys) said...

Wow, I love seeing beautiful handmade wooden works!

On September 8, 2012 at 9:41 AM , Fred said...

Thank you all for the very kind words. Your support assistance has been most appreciated.