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Gary Foster
  • Male
  • Folsom, CA
  • United States
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Profile Information

In what kind of woodworking business do you work?
Custom Furniture
Company Name
Foster's Fine Furniture
What kind of products do you make?
Hand made furniture

I have been a woodworker since I was introduced to it at nine years old by a neighbor. For most of my life I worked in the garage on small projects for family and friends. I like to make things that are not only beautiful but are a challenge to build.

I designed and built a new 1040 square foot dream shop in 2000.
Having the large shop changed everything. After I built the shop I started taking woodworking classes with some nationally known instructors. “I have found that it can be inspirational to work with someone who is at a much higher level than yourself”. I have been particularly inspired by the works of David Marks and the late Sam Maloof.

I joined one of the local clubs ‘Sacramento Area Woodworkers’ in 2005. When the members saw my work they asked if I would be willing to teach a “few” classes to the club members. Over the next five years the “few” classes reached over 45 hands-on classes and demonstrations with well over 240 students. Some of the work that they had produced was of very high quality.

During one of the club meetings a group of eight members wanted to build workbenches. Since I already had a European-style workbench I had to come up with something new. Since I do sculptured furniture as well as steam bending the workbench had to be able to do those two items as well as all of the normal hand cut joinery that is so satisfying to me. While helping the others build their workbenches I designed and built a totally new style workbench with a totally new type of horizontal vise. It is one that can be used to do almost any kind of woodworking from sculptured furniture, steam bending, carving, marquetry, and even greenwood work. I am posting videos of it onto YouTube and I will keep you updated.

"I think that when you help someone else to improve their woodworking skills you can make a much larger impact on their lives than if you just gave them a piece of your finest furniture” . With this in mind, last year I and five other furniture makers decided to start a furniture making guild in northern California. The name of the guild is Sierra Nevada Fine Furniture Makers Guild. It is a juried membership, but it does have a category for apprentices for someone who has demonstrated a conscientious effort to improve their skills, but yet does not have a signature furniture piece to present for admission to the Guild. The apprentice will be teamed up one-on-one with a current member for guidance in the completion of his or her signature piece of furniture. We have been working on our website and hopefully will be ready to open the Guild for general membership in the near future. I will keep you posted.

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Gary Foster's Blog

Posted on May 6, 2013 at 12:12pm 0 Comments


Posted on May 6, 2013 at 12:00pm 1 Comment


I would like to introduce you to a new workbench design that I came up with over the last few years. I started woodworking when I was nine and soon discovered that I like to not only build things that were beautiful but a challenge to build. With that in mind I ended up switching from one type of woodworking to another from joinery to steam bending, to marquetry to sculptured furniture, and anything else that struck my fancy.

The idea for the…


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