2021 Vendor Features: Humble Bee Woodworks
Get the buzz on Humble Bee Woodworks.
Bees, beeswax, craftsmanship and love. Humble Bee Woodworks began as a labor of love. Proprietor Anthony Vaneman did woodworking with his dad as a kid; once he had children of his own it was back to the basement to craft a kitchen set for daughter Alexis. Loving the work, he and partner (now wife!) Brianne talked about starting a business. Brianne loves bees, Anthony uses beeswax as a wood finish and both wish to be humble, thus Humble Bee Woodworks began in February 2020.
The intent was to craft wine racks, beer 6-pack holders and bottle openers for sale at local music events and festivals but the party never started as the pandemic brought cancellation after cancellation. With no festivals or celebration venues in which to sell their wares, the pair quickly pivoted to a new product line, focusing on cutting boards, coasters and charcuterie boards. By July 2020 they had a website up and running and secured placement at four local farmers markets: Haddonfield, Haddon Heights, Westmont and Mt. Holly, along with the occasional pop-up event such as holiday markets (SoHa Arts Building) and Pride. Humble Bee Woodworks made it work in 2020.
In April 2021, the business moved from the family basement to the former Lunacy Brewing space in Magnolia; while the workshop is not yet open to the public, Anthony envisions opening by appointment, and welcomes custom commissions. He scours the greater Delaware Valley for wood, searching Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania and New Jersey for Black Walnut, Maple, Cherry and Birch; he also relies on select lumberyards and sawmills for specimen lumber. Teak is popular and ideally suited for cutting boards – Humble Bee Woodworks imports sustainably produced teak from Brazil and also uses two different exotics: Padauk and Purple Heart. All woodworking is done by Anthony, who uses a variety of power tools in tandem with multiple steps of skilled hand craftsmanship.
Humble Bee Woodworks makes their own beeswax and mineral oil finish, using beeswax provided by a Stratford-based beekeeper. Each handcrafted piece is finished with this locally sourced blend and includes an extra tin of the unguent.The food-safe beeswax and mineral oil polish is offered for sale and perfect for use on any cutting board.
Anthony loves the return of the Haddonfield Farmers’ Market to the Kings Court location because it is in the center of town and the heart of the business district. He looks forward to producing furniture and bringing it to the market, and in the meantime enjoys networking with local businesses to create unique items. Humble Bee Woodworks has collaborated with Haddonfield Farmers’ Market vendor Breathe by Josie to craft a bracelet and earrings; additional collaborations with local vendors are in the works.
Anthony celebrates being local, sustainable and supporting other local businesses and the people who do the hard work to make it happen. Follow @humblebeewoodworks on Instagram and Facebook! Learn more at https://www.humblebeewoodworks.com/