One of our favorite things at MuskOx is seeing members of The Herd share their adventures. So we figure that it’s about time we share a little information about an important member of the MuskOx Herd, craftsman and woodworker, Andy Rawls.
A lifetime Texan, Andy Rawls is someone who cares about making high-quality tangible goods, which is why he’s made the decision to be part of the MuskOx team, not just as an ambassador, but as part of the company. So rather than hearing it from us, we thought it would be better to spend a few minutes with Andy to let him tell you directly. But since Andy is a real humble guy, we thought we should let you know a little bit about him first.
A family man first and foremost, Andy lives with his wife Emily and 3 kids in Boerne, nestled in the Texas Hillcountry with a small-town feel and big-city world view. Andy’s a graduate of Baylor University, where he met Emily, and is a fixture of the Texas community. He’s best known for his high-end woodworking skills, which started as a custom furniture business called Andy Rawls Fine Texas Woodcraft, and has grown into a YouTube channel which has received approximately 60 million views and an Instagram account with ~25,000 followers.
As an active member of his church, Andy is consistently sought after nationally for his sophisticated but simple approach to craftsmanship. For those that know Andy, it will be no surprise to learn that he’s never advertised for customers, but has gained all new clients through word of mouth as the quality of the furniture speaks for itself. Andy has a keen design sense which comes to life through superb workmanship that MuskOx has always appreciated.
So, with no further adieu -- here’s our Q&A with Andy
MuskOx: How did you get into woodworking and when did you realize this could be your vocation?
Andy: I first started woodworking with my Dad when I was in High school. He had a small shop in our garage and we would build projects together. In fact, one of our first projects was a workbench that I still use in my shop today and is very special to me. Around 2004, I took several furniture making classes under Paul Sellers, and it was these classes that fueled my passion for the craft. At that point, I realized I wanted to do it for a living and I’ve been pursuing it ever since.
MuskOx: In what ways does your craftsmanship represent who you are?
Andy: I guess I’ve always seen myself as someone who believes in diving into the details and caring about all the small things. The process of building furniture is what I love the most, not necessarily admiring or taking pride in the finished product. The process is what shapes you as a person and craftsman, the small task that together make up the skills needed to build good furniture. I’ve spent years developing and learning these skills through a lot of failure and patience; those years have really shaped who I am. You know, I’ve found that if you care about the small things, the big picture seems to come together. As a woodworker, I get to work with my hands and create things from the ground up. I love the satisfaction that comes with creating something beautiful and I’ve always been one to focus on creating beautiful new things rather than trying to repeat what’s already out there.
MuskOx: How would you describe your design style?
Andy: Oh, man -- that’s a good question and probably a little hard to define. I appreciate classic timeless style. I tend to not get into too many trends, but focus on things that will withstand the test of time and give them a hint of modern sophistication. And of course I’m always looking to learn something new or try an approach that’s going to stretch my limits.
Photo via Andy Rawls
MuskOx: We see your YouTube channel URL includes /emily4Life. Tell us about what Emily means to you and how she inspires you?
Andy: There’s no way I would be where I am today without her support. In fact, I’m not even sure I would be making furniture...I probably would have given up a long time ago. She’s endured through some rough times as I’ve worked to grow my business, and let me tell you -- being a furniture maker is no lucrative career choice. She willingly made the sacrifices necessary to make this business work and worked hard herself growing and selling her own clothing business. I guess where I’m going with this is she’s the brains behind everything and I just build the furniture!
MuskOx: How has being a father made you a better man?
Andy: The thing about fatherhood is it will quickly make you aware of how selfish you can be, especially with your time. The common saying is “they grow up fast” and it's so true. I want to enjoy every moment I can and not put my work ahead of the small things like spending 10 minutes to build a tower with my boy or a quick dress up karaoke session with my daughter.
MuskOx: Why are you excited to be part of MuskOx?
Andy: I really just fell in love with the brand right away. I’ve always prided myself in doing things the right way and knowing Brad for a long time, I know that’s also important to him -- and Lindsey as well. MuskOx makes classic clothes with a modern angle, which is something that I’ve always prided myself on -- so the fit seemed pretty natural. Plus, I really love the MuskOx name; they are amazing animals and it’s fun to help give them a little extra exposure as well.
MuskOx: What’s your favorite piece of MuskOx clothing that you own?
Andy: That’s hard to say since I appreciate the attention to detail across all the MuskOx clothes...but I’d probably have to say it’s the Grand Flannel. The shirts are thick, well constructed, and have really nice patterns.
At MuskOx, we couldn’t be more excited to have Andy as part of The Herd. He’s humble, kind, incredibly talented, and always enhancing his craft. MuskOx are known to be rugged, timeliness, and loyal...and with that we can say with complete confidence that Andy Rawls is indeed a MuskOx Man.
So, here’s to the journey and the adventure of life.