John is a lineman by trade, however, growing up he would often cut cedar logs into hand-hewn cedar log beds. He started seeing the value and beauty of handcrafted furniture so he started selling them to a few local furniture stores until he went off to college.
It wasn’t until John and Ceara received a sawmill from John’s grandfather as a wedding gift in 2008, that John really started to see the beauty in different species of wood. Cutting a log in different ways exposed different grain patterns and John found it interesting to see just how many boards could be cut from a single log. In 2015, John and Ceara began the project of building their dream home; a hybrid Chalet-style home built with a pine timber frame internal structure and an insulated concrete form outer shell. Ceara, a drafting designer by trade, drafted up the plans for their home and even designed the layout for the kitchen cabinets. John had hopes of building the cabinets himself but with time constraints, was forced to receive quotes from outside manufacturers. Rick Smith from Woodsmith’s Manufacturing drove to Smithfield where John and Ceara were building to measure the room(s) for cabinets. Rick noticed John’s wood working tools and Ceara’s designing skills and the common interest in wood production and handcrafted design. A friendship was formed and the door to a business opportunity was opened.
For the next few years John focused on the growth of their cabinetry line and was looking to add other retail locations. During this period he came in contact with the owners of Ware-Butler and wanted to expand to their other store locations. After some discussion a deal was reached and the vision of Woodsmith's becoming Ware-Butler's Maine made brand of cabinetry came to life.
In 2021, Woodsmith's was sold to Ware-Butler building supply. John has stayed on as General Manager to complete his vision of taking Woodsmith's to the next level.
Ware-Butler is one of the oldest lumber yards in the state of Maine and prides itself on Maine start to finish. It is part of the Pleasant River Family of companies
Today, Woodsmith’s Manufacturing employs 23 highly skilled craftsmen with over 200 years of combined experience in handcrafted cabinetry. The manufacturing facility is at its new 24,000 square foot location in Detroit, Maine.