Visit my other web site at www.mikerileywoodworker.com Born in 1951, I moved to volcano in 1972 and am a self-taught woodworker. My knowledge of local woods has come from hands-on experience developed over the past thirty-five years. I design many of the pieces I build, starting from a three-dimensional sketch to work out ideas with the client and taking it to the completed piece. I run a one man shop, that means every piece is built, sanded and finished by me, production is not my focus. I build fifteen to twenty pieces a year and my work has won many awards.
I also will build pieces in well-known traditional and contemporary designs, I feel this gives me an opportunity to explore and understand the work of masters that have come before me, and allows me to design future pieces with the experience necessary to incorporate the essential elements found in each period of design.
Each piece of furniture I build is finished in a hand rubbed
oil using a recipe I have developed myself. Oil finish only
needs to be reapplied occasionally, brings out the true
color of the wood, has the most natural feel of any finish
and never has to be stripped or refinished, thereby preserving
the patina of fine furniture.
Living with an active volcano as a neighbor has provided exciting moments over the past forty years. It is a part of life in Hawaii that has influenced my work. These photos are of furniture completed in my shop during these years. Each piece was designed and built using the finest Hawaiian woods and old world joinery to create hand-made furniture that is not only distinctive but able to stand up to everyday use. Knowledge of local woods and years of experience building custom furniture on the Big Island have contributed to developing a unique style of work that is a reflection of the many cultural and natural influences found in Hawaii.
Serving for ten years for the board of directors of the Big Island Woodworkers Guild including a term as it's president, three years on the board of directors of Volcano Art Center and as president of our church congregation has helped me build a business with a solid foundation enabling me to guarantee every piece of furniture I build.