We are a small family and neighborhood based business on Whidbey Island in central Puget Sound. Revolving around our core staff is a network of craftspeople who join us for larger projects. Our restoration work at Paradise Inn on Mt. Rainier is a good example of how our process works. Many talented people joined us over a two-year period for significant parts of this work. Collaboration is the bedrock of our business.
Live Edge Woodworks
Kim Hoelting, Founder
Builder, Designer, Lumberman
Kim has often said that he was born to do this work, and it shows. His energy and enthusiasm permeates everything he does. Although his work has traveled to many other countries, he is most proud of his contributions to the artistic landscape of his beloved Puget Sound.
Kim is a third generation native of the Northwest, who spent his childhood and youth exploring its saltwater beaches and climbing its mountain peaks. As a young boy he began building elaborate rafts, tree houses, and experimenting with landscape design. This early understanding of the relationship between form and function, landscape and design, developed into a life-long passion.
After receiving a BA in Architecture and Urban Planning, Kim followed his heart into woodworking. His early carpentry training involved an eclectic mix of builders and craftsmen, including formative years with sculptor, Dudley Carter.
Kim’s upbringing led him naturally to two important industries of the region – salmon fishing and timber. This hands-on experience deepened his education, eventually leading to the study of forest ecology and sensible building practices, long before they were fashionable. His business now encompasses the entire journey of wood, from forest to sawmill to finished product.
Kim is most proud of the deep and enduring network of suppliers and customers that surround him on a daily basis. This diverse community of loggers, sawyers, truckers, architects, builders and woodworkers is the glue that holds this whole enterprise together.
Kim is often humble, and doesn’t often tout his work in public. But those that know of his work, and his passion, consider him The Godfather of Natural Woods, and was the inspiration to, and creative source, behind many well-known companies that work in this same field.
Kim is joined in the work by a hard working crew at the mill and kiln, working to take this wood to new levels. Most of them work too hard to want any glory, but you will definitely see their passion in their faces, and their work. Kim is also being reluctantly drawn into the 21st century with the help of his son and a computer consultant who not only is helping Kim relieve himself of the stresses of running a business, but the potential things he can create when the business focus is largely automated. Kim also has assistance brining himself and his operation into the 21st Century. Too numerous to enumerate, the core group at Live Edge, are second to none in their professionalism and their ability to get things done right.