Carving a new path to success

Carving a new path to success

A Barnsley-based craftsman is heading in a new direction with his business by building bespoke furniture for local homes and companies.

Designer and cabinetmaker Reece Van Sanden, owner of Van Sanden, has spent the last five years working on kitchen and bathroom improvements for people across South Yorkshire, however is redirecting his focus to his love of crafting individual items of furniture.

Reece is now setting his sights on crafting beds, cabinets, tables, seating and even Wendy houses out of materials including wood, steel, concrete and glass, alongside corporate products such as reception desks, trade show stands and production jigs.

He has also designed a line of horse-themed children’s beds designed to look like show jumps.

Thanks to a recent collaboration with Enterprising Barnsley, the business development and support arm of Barnsley Council, Van Sanden has been offered the support and guidance to expand his online presence through social media and his website, as well as building and maintaining an email database, and developing a new brochure.

Reece said: “I’ve always relied on word of mouth for my home improvement work, but I needed help to spread the word about the bespoke furniture side. I want people to know that factory-made furniture taken straight from a production line is not their only option.”

Thanks to this recent boost, Reece, who currently works on his own, now has plans to hire his first apprentice to work with him to learn the craft and help grow with the business.

“I’ve worked hard to be outstanding in my trade, but I’m not always so good with the business side of things, so the support I’ve had from Enterprising Barnsley has been crucial,” he added.

Angela Pedley, business development manager at Enterprising Barnsley, said: “Reece is a very skilled craftsman who originally trained in furniture design and cabinet making.

“Although he built a successful business in a related field installing kitchens and so on, it’s great to see him now put his passion into his first love of creating home furnishings, and we’re delighted to be supporting his business growth.”  



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