I am a sucker for a good craft fair. Show me an artisan who has spent hours blowing a glass vase or weeks stitching a quilt, I start digging for my credit card. A furniture maker who has built a beautiful rocker will require my bringing Will back to see. And let’s not forget about the amazing apple sauce or the addicting kettle corn.
But back to my point… We love craftsmanship. However, several forces have conspired over the last couple of decades to “throw shade” on the reputation of the construction trades. We all know some of this has been earned by a segment of the build-fast industry. But knowing how hard the men and women on our jobs work, I hope to change some opinions.
Here are some examples of work reflecting the contractors’ investment of time, skill, and experience. The gentleman who installed this stone fireplace surround spent three days cutting, fitting, and laying the stones in the family room. He paid attention to the color and size of individual stones and created a beautifully balanced centerpiece.
The tile installers spend an impressive amount of time preparing the underlayment and determining placement before they ever start cutting. Not only do they concern themselves with precision symmetry, they spend hours upon hours ensuring that the product won’t shift, move, or crack long after buyers take possession.
We love our plumber. He has been working in Northern Virginia for decades and brings a wealth of experience and advice to our sites. There was no functional reason for him to create such beautiful symmetry with these pipes. And weeks later, drywall forever sealed it from view. But he cares so he did it.
So, yes. There are contractors out there giving their contemporaries a bad name. But we are routinely blown away by the care and skill the craftsmen exhibit. And just as I envy the quilter’s careful stitching, I wish my two hands could perfectly plumb a house or build a beautiful fireplace around which families will gather. Fortunately, we know people whose hands do exactly that.