Welcome to the new Dear Wood blog!
I've been meaning to put up a blog on the website for a while to share all kinds of guitar-related topics and updates from our recently finished workshop. Today seems an appropriate day to write the first blog entry because we're celebrating our 1st year anniversary! On the 6th of august 2018 the website went online, we opened our showroom and were officially in business!
Reflecting on this past year it dawns on me that although we are a young business, Dear Wood came forth from a journey that started more than 25 years ago when I first picked up the guitar. From that moment on I lived and breathed music and played guitar whenever I could.
School on the other hand wasn't the place for me so at the age of 17 I quit.. After that I went from one shitty job to another, but instead of going back to school I practiced as much as I could and followed my own course. After a few years I managed to make a living teaching guitar next to writing and performing my own music. I rented a business location and started a guitar-school which I successfully ran for over 11 years, and worked on the side at a private music-school in the beginning to make ends meet.
On the 6th of August 2018 we opened our showroom on the 3rd floor of this beautiful monumental building in the city centre of Breda.
In the aftermath of the financial crisis I found that it became harder to maintain a steady income teaching guitar, and that's when I started to buy and sell mostly electric guitars. Whenever I start something new I want to know it inside out, so it made sense to me to start at the pinnacle of electic guitarmaking, the 50's and 60's. I absorbed all the information I could find about 50's and 60's Fender,Gibson and Gretsch guitars and started buying them predominantly on the US market. This proved to be a success and I quickly became noticed for having one of the most extensive collections of vintage guitars for sale in the Netherlands. Those were the pioneering days that would eventually lead to Dear Wood Guitar Boutique. The downside of importing guitars was the dependency of the exchange rate and the increasingly stricter reinforcement of CITES. That's when I decided to look out for dealerships, and started representing luthiers who's work I admired such as the late Irish luthier Chris Larkin.
Meanwhile I was still teaching guitar, and had no space to put the guitars I was selling on display. If you came by for a guitar at the time I would collect it from my cramped storage room, as some may remember, and would meet you at my small teaching studio. This went on for a couple of years until in 2018 we found the current location in the Boschstraat in the city centre of Breda. Finally being able to put all guitars on display in a beautiful location where customers could visit and try the complete collection in a relaxed atmosphere had been a dream for many years, and one that finally came true! After this major step forward I felt the need to come up with a "real" name for the business, and so Dear Wood was born. Today we carry several amazing brands as well as luthier made guitars and I'm particularly proud that we became an official dealer for Maton guitars this year as well as a dealer for Schertler amplification. We've also started working on our own line of guitars which I'm very excited about, and hope to introduce very soon.
So that's life in a nutshell.. even though we're celebrating our 1st year anniversary today the foundation for Dear Wood comes from over 25 years of guitar-playing, and a passion for guitars and the art of luthiery. My aim is to keep sharing this passion, and to keep learning and getting better at what we're doing. Although Dear Wood is operated by myself, whenever I say "we" I'm referring to the friends and family who often help out behind the scene, and most notably my girlfriend Suzanne who has helped define Dear Wood in many ways. We both greatly appreciate the enthusiastic responses we've received this past year from customers who visited our showroom or bought a guitar online, and hope you'll continue to follow us on this journey onto the next 25 years!