Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Etsy seller feature tpursell @ Grand Prairie Woodworks

Today's Etsy Seller Feature is on Tim Pursell of Grand Prairie Woodworks which has some of the best quality woodworking on Etsy. Tim was born and raised in Illinois and currently lives in Homewood, IL just 8 miles from where he was born. He is semi retired from his previous job as an auto mechanic and now spends most of his time woodworking and fishing.

Tim grew up in the Roseland area of Chicago where there were many early 20th century "Chicago Style" Bungalows. The woodwork and stained glass common in these homes drew his interest and over the years Tim put together a large collection of books, magazines, photos and other printed material about the related designs associated with the Arts and Crafts, movement which he still uses for inspiration.

Tim's favorite items he has created are the Queen bed he built & the Arts and Crafts style floor lamp. Of the items currently on Etsy, the Beverly Deluxe cutting board is his favorite piece.

There are many things Tim love's about what he does. First is the design process. He tries to incorporate the Arts and Crafts philosophy of simple honest construction but with a lighter, more modern touch, and applies these principals to his work. Tim loves the challenge of pushing the envelope, trying new techniques and achieving the high level of quality he strives for. His biggest satifaction is that all the things he makes are meant to be used & loved.

The Beverly Deluxe cutting board

Tim's Tips for Crafters:
#1 Keep your day job! Very few are charging enough for their work. It's hard to do so. Too many people look at things in the stores and expect your prices to be like the stuff brought to us in shipping containers from someplace that think $1 a day in wages is making the big time.
#2 Do something you REALLY love. No sense working yourself to the bone doing something less than fun. That's what your day job is for.
#3 Develop your skills. Improve your equipment. Find the best suppliers. Just because you build wonderful items that take 3 weeks to build and cost you $400 in material does not mean you can charge 120 hours of labor and $800 in material plus profit for them. Not if the next guy can make the same thing in 5 hours & $100 in material to sell it for a profit at one tenth your price.
This photo is Tim's Grandfather in his wood shop circa 1920 in a small town is SW Iowa called Shenandoah.
This Bed is made from quarter sawn white oak with a fumed oak finish and features 66 square spindles and required 148 mortise and tenon joints.

The Buffet is the first big piece of real furniture Tim built.
This blue/white shaded lamp is in antique finished cherry with 104 hand cut (by Tim) pieces of glass in the shade.
The 3 matching lamps  and table are part of a set  in qswo featuring custom stained glass by Tim.
Tim can be contacted at the below:

Etsy shop: www.tpursell.etsy.com
1000 markets shop: 
http://www.chitown-angler.com (He's known as Big Tim)


  1. Tim had some wonderful advice. I love his shop!
    Thanks for the great read!

  2. Oh my gosh! His stuff is beautiful! My Grandfather was a carpenter so I can appreciate to true skill and artistry. Thanks for posting this article!

  3. He have done some grate woodwork .
    And You have writed a good review .