AUSTIN, Texas — Brodie Havel can’t pinpoint exactly where his affinity for woodworking came from.
What You Need To Know
- Brodie Havel started giving his son wood working projects
- Started a side business with his friend Devin
“It’s something I can challenge myself with but still be able to produce something beautiful,” Havel said looking at a shelf that holds family memories he built out of fence pickets. “If I see it, I know I can build it.”
His home is a gallery of wood he’s repurposed for shelving and decorations. His garage is his personal playground, but it wasn’t always full of tools.
Before the shutdown due to COVID-19, Havel was working in the new home business as a warranty specialist. As people were being told to social distance, Havel was just returning from paternity leave and was moved to the safety sector of his profession which meant less opportunities for bonuses. Meanwhile his wife was home with newborn twins and their crazy four-year-old son, Xzander.
“She was still home with him and he was driving her crazy so we came up with some projects for him.” Havel said.
After doing some research, Havel prepared everything Xzander needed to put together a mini picnic table for squirrels.
“He spent hours watching out the back window, waiting for a squirrel to come have lunch at his little table he just put together.” Havel said.
Havel’s wife shared some pictures of the project to the “Mothers of Twins” Facebook group. A few moms reached out asking for a table so Havel made a few more.
One of Whimsical WoodWorking’s projects. (Photo Courtesy: Brodie Havel)
“Those people shared it on their pages and more people messaged us. It just kept expanding and expanding.” Havel said.
A friend suggested he post the squirrel picnic table project to another group to see if anyone else was interested.
“That was the day the garage turned into a wood shop,” Havel said. “My phone didn’t stop vibrating for eight hours.”
And that’s how Whimsical WoodWorking was born. While Havel still has a steady income, his friend Devin jumped on board to help with the uptick in requests for tables. Devin lost his income when everything shut down so it provided enough for him to pay his bills. Together they’ve built around 1,000 tables since early April.
They provide the tables built and ready to install on a fence or place of the customers choice. Or people can buy the pieces unassembled and build the table at home.
As Havel and Devin transition back to their every day jobs, they plan to continue providing customers with cool, fun projects for the whole family. Havel says the extra income is nice, but as a father who started the project to see his son happy, he’s just glad to help other families experience that same joy.
“As a dad seeing him [Xzander] having fun, it was easy for me to modify it into everyone else having fun too.” Havel said.