gmhTODAY 18 gmhToday Feb March 2018 - Page 19

Back in the beginning, when they still worked out of their yard, code enforcement issues and complaints from their neighbor about the noise had them looking for a new location. In 2011, Joe moved his operation to an old redwood lumber yard in the Coyote area near Bailey and Monterey. He worked out of a 12 foot by 20 foot space for a couple of years until they were able to move into a vacant barn in the middle of a farm field, also in the Coyote area. The space was perfect, but in 2013 tragedy struck: the barn burned to the ground, taking all their tools and supplies with it. “We lost everything,” Joe said. However, after the San Jose Mercury News reported on it, they received an outpouring of support from the community. “We had people showing up with tools and wood, just helping us get back on our feet,” Joe recalled. They were deeply grateful, especially because the structure was uninsurable due to its age so they could not recoup their losses. GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN “We managed to rebuild just from donations.” Two more moves later and they settled in San Martin, not only in the shop—where they have 6,000 square feet of wood- working space and 1,500 square feet of metal shop—but the couple also bought a house on five acres on California Avenue. Their son is building another small home on the property. “We love San Martin, and the large property sizes,” Joe said. Despite earlier setbacks, business is booming. They regu- larly service such big tech companies as Google and Facebook, as well as a host of residential customers who come to them for the unique pieces that Joe is known for. “We try to do things differently, one-of-a-kind, stuff that doesn’t look like everybody else’s work. There’s a huge artistic component to what we do,” Joe said. As the child of an artist, Joe admits that the process is absolutely a creative act for him, and not just all a means to a paycheck. FEBRUARY/MARCH 2018 19