Carpenter Floor shares her secret to success
- Floor Doelman is a furniture maker from the Netherlands with a passion for natural materials and her trade
- She’s gone from being the only girl in her woodworking class to running her own carpentry business
- She started wearing Steel Blue boots after her brother regifted her a pair of boots that were too small for him
Talk to anyone who works with wood every day and it doesn’t take long for their passion for this beautiful, natural material to come to the surface.
Floor Doelman, a furniture maker from the Netherlands, is exactly the same.
“The thing I like the most about working with wood is that wood is initially a really coarse product and eventually it becomes a refined piece of furniture,” she said. “Of course, that transition takes a lot of time, effort and some love. But realizing a project is really satisfying and it’s a great feeling when the customer is happy with the end results.”
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An early aptitude for working with wood
Floor has been working with wood since the age of 15, when she switched to a school with a vocational approach to education. Her favourite class was construction, where she was the only female face.
“The idea that I was going to be the only girl in class was a bit scary at first, but I didn’t let that obstruct my dream of being a Carpenter,” she said. “Carpentry is a profession that requires you to be creative and also technically skilled.”
She said it’s also really good fun, with lots of elements to the job that she really enjoys.
“I think I love sanding coarse wood the most because you can see so much difference with all the different grits,” she said. “By sanding you expose the beauty of the wood. That process I find really enjoyable.”
The work can also be tough, though. Floor said the most challenging aspect was the physical impact on her body, working with heavy objects for eight hours a day.
“I try to divide my time and alternate between heavy work and some easier work,” she said. The physicality of the carpentry trade is one reason wearing a good pair of boots really matters.
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Encouraging young women into carpentry
Floor has now started her own carpentry business and documents her projects on Instagram. Floor encourages more young women to consider carpentry as a trade.
“My advice for young women is to not let someone else’s opinion, or general opinion, get in the way of your dreams,” she said. “If you’re dreaming of working in carpentry, I would highly recommend chasing that dream and following a dedicated class or study. By chasing that dream, you’ll face many failures on the way. But remember that success is going from one failure to another, without giving up.”
Why Floor wears Steel Blue work boots
Floor said she started wearing Steel Blue boots after her father gave her brother a pair of them as a present. She said her father works on a big ship, “so he is pretty familiar with the quality of Steel Blue”. But when the gifted boots turned out to be a little too small for her brother’s feet, he regifted them to her.
“Ever since, I have worked countless hours in that pair of boots,” she said.
When they eventually needed replacing, Floor chose a new pair of Southern Cross Zip boots in black Leather with an internal Met-Guard which offers superior impact protection.
“I love how these boots keep you safe, warm and are also stylish,” she said.