When Dan DeSerto struggled to find quality wood at local outlets, he took his hobby to a whole new level.
In January 2016, he founded Bull Valley Hardwood and established a woodworking retail store that also handles custom furniture, bar top, countertop and cabinet design and builds.
His mission: to be the only shop a woodworker could ever need. DeSerto’s “log-to-lumber” approach gives him the ability to oversee every step of the cutting and drying process for the hardwood he sells. His dedication to quality helps him ensure Bull Valley Hardwood’s lumber and woodworking supplies are top of the line.
“We don’t just bring items in here and convince you to buy because we sell it,” he says. “We use the products ourselves, and we’re very knowledgeable about them.”
DeSerto and his staff maintain quality in several ways, starting with the way they source lumber. Most comes from local sources and contains the sort of character many woodworkers desire. DeSerto carries some 70 species of wood.
Knowledge is another piece of the puzzle. An on-site classroom and woodturning studio host a wide range of classes for woodworkers and woodturners of all skill levels. From beginner classes that focus on working with wood to advanced classes that include special guests, woodworkers of all skill levels can study up on topics like basic and advanced joinery, veneering, bent lamination work, hand tools and power tools.
The final subject, finishing, is taught over its own set of classes. This topic, says DeSerto, is the Achilles heel for many.
DeSerto encourages aspiring woodworkers to take advantage of hands-on education.
“It doesn’t have to be like drinking from a fire hose,” DeSerto says. “You can learn as you go. You don’t have to be overwhelmed. Just take it step by step. That’s what our classes are for.”
Bull Valley Hardwood is located at 1251 Cobblestone Way, Woodstock, (815) 701-9400.