Dave Stonehouse found his niche market, and Golden has become the perfect place to share his talents both with clients and students.
“The trend seems to be getting back to basics, back to that traditional style of home,” said Stonehouse, who builds custom log homes, as well as teaches log home building courses at his site in Donald.
“I was always fascinated with the log building world. I finally stopped working in the bush and took a 10-week log building program.”
Stonehouse originally found himself in the Golden area working out in the bush, but decided he like the area, not the job.
After taking the building course he found his first job in the Yukon. He came back to Golden to work with another builder, and now has his own business.
Before he knew it Stonehouse had 17 years of log building under his belt, and decided to start sharing some of that knowledge.
“After 17 years of trying to perfect your craft…you build up your own style and philosophies, and it’s rewarding to pass that on to people. And it’s fantastic when you have students who are eager to learn, you’re not twisting their arm,” he said.
Stonehouse taught a week-long course in October with 10 students, six of which came in from out of town. He even had to put a few on a wait list.
“Some of these guys had never even picked up a chainsaw before, so it’s really great to see how far you can come in just a week.”
As more and more pre-fab homes are popping up, Stonehouse has definitely noticed the respect for tradition growing, as well as a desire to use natural materials. And part of that tradition means not throwing away the old.
That is why Stonehouse not only builds new custom log homes, but also specializes in restoring heritage homes.
He currently has a 120-year-old log home that he had shipped over from Ontario so he could restore it here in Golden.
Of course, now that he has been bitten by the teaching bug, Stonehouse is looking forward to teaching more courses.
Right now he offers a spring and a fall class, but is hoping to garner enough interest for a summer class.
“I would do more, happily,” he said. “So if enough students are interested, I’d like to do three or four a year.”
To learn more, go to stonehousewoodworks.com.