We had the good fortune of connecting with Jake Sells and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jake, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
Jake Sells Wood evolved out of something different entirely. For me, woodworking was a creative outlet. A creative outlet that I desperately needed during unhappy times. I was steadily working as an analyst in the commercial banking industry and the doldrums of cubicle life were driving me mad. Because of this, I decided to make a change. When a move from my apartment (at the time) and into a house presented itself, I had one item on my wish list: a space to woodwork at night and on the weekends. I wanted to start working with my hands and build furniture for both personal use and for close family and friends. I loved it and couldn’t get enough. This led to many builds, many mistakes, lots of YouTube DIY videos, more mistakes, more learning, and finally a logo and branding. At that point, I had the confidence, desire, and motivation to turn what was once a hobby into a business. I haven’t looked back since.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Everything that comes out of the shop is custom 1 of 1 handmade. I’m a bit OCD so that comes out in the details of my work. I love working with a client on a specific idea and making it come to life. No project is the same, which keeps things fresh for me. The woodshop is my place of zen. My dojo. I can go in there, put on some tunes, and shut out all of the bs that comes with living in Los Angeles. I don’t have time for bs in my shop.
There were definitely a lot of struggles along the way, but all of the support I have gotten keeps me going. Also, seeing all of the other wonderful woodworkers out there drives me to continue learning this craft and to take on risks. It’s always evolving.
I would want the world to know that everything that comes out of my shop is me. It’s made by my hands so it represents me. Loan applications analyzed in a cubicle didn’t represent me. I stand fully behind my work and with that I demand high quality output.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
A week in the summer: We’re getting breakfast at Bea Bea’s in Burbank everyday, attending a few Dodger games and drinking the $55 michealadas, catching some Drew League games, hitting up numerous taco trucks, take a night drive up to Mt. Wilson, and getting drinks at Gold Line Bar on Fig in Highland Park.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
1.) My Dad, for making me work with my hands back in Iowa growing up. 2.) All of my family and close friends who have ever bought a piece off of me, commissioned me to do some work, or have supported JSW with their kind words. You know who you are. They are the ones who pushed this thing forward.
3.) All of my past clients who have supported the shop!