At the Cabinet Makers Association’s Conference


Recently, Kanda and Nandi traveled to Denver, Colorado for the Cabinet Makers Association’s 20th Anniversary Conference. Rivendell was excited to be a part of this well-attended, first-time event that brought together more than 150 cabinet makers from across the country. As an active member of the CMA for over 14 years, the comradery of our community is important to us.

Kanda was inspired by the opening keynote address, “The Struggles of Running a Small Shop” by author and woodworker, Paul Downs. Literally the founding father of Rivendell, Kanda began and ran the shop until his sons came of age and were experienced enough to become owners. Like other small businesses, we have had our share of growing pains over the last four decades.

Nandi was particularly interested “Technology Tools for Today’s Woodworker” presented by Christian Zorio from Mission Bell, a woodworking company situated in Silicon Valley. We use the same software suite as this tech-savvy shop and are continually investing in the advanced tools and machinery this industry has offer. Since he’s the one who takes site measurements, Nandi was excited to learn about the Faro Focus Laser Scanner that can capture the idiosyncrasies of a room to provide precise dimensions and eliminate human error.

Conference attendees were invited to tour the plants of Premier Eurocase and TruStile Doors, where almost all operations were automated. Even though we pride ourselves on hand-crafted pieces, we were impressed with the efficiency of these shops. Rivendell may be able to apply some of their problem-solving principles to make our shop more efficient as well.

While the content of the CMA Conference was wonderful, Kanda found the greatest value in connecting with his peers. “We’re all in this niche business, creating high-quality woodwork for discerning customers. We can share our experiences and insights and ways of doing things better.”