Alumni Spotlight: Heather Tauck

We sat down with Heather Tauck, an alumni of the Woodworking Certificate in 2012 and Historic Restoration course in 2013, to hear where her Yestermorrow education has taken her six years later.

It's been six years since you were on the Yestermorrow campus. What exciting things are you up to now?

After completing the 3-month woodworking intensive, I moved to Pittsburgh where I worked for a non-profit arts center teaching printmaking classes for about a year.

I was feeling antsy to get back into the woodshop and learn more about building, so I moved to Boston for a two-year program at the North Bennet Street School studying Preservation Carpentry. After I completed the program, I went to work for a museum quality furniture conservation company and then for a residential carpentry company as a millworker and builder.

I now live in western Massachusetts and just started my own business - HT Woodshop - making and repairing furniture and housewares. My husband, Griffin, who also took the 3-month woodworking intensive at Yestermorrow, is now a very talented carpenter and metal fabricator.

What brought you to Yestermorrow?

My family has roots in the Mad River Valley so naturally, we were curious to check out the school. Everyone in my family has taken a course at Yestermorrow over the years! Yestermorrow thrives on a strong sense of community. Good food, great instructors, beautiful landscape – the perfect ingredients for creativity and learning.

What has proved to be the most important thing you gained from Yestermorrow?

Think ahead. Have a plan in place. Double check your measurements. But also, mistakes can be fixed.

Was there an “ah ha” moment during your course?

I pretty much fell in love with woodworking during the segment where we built ladder back chairs out of green wood with nothing but hand tools. To this day, I find using spokeshaves and drawknives the most satisfying tools to work with.

What advice do you have for potential Yestermorrow students?

Don’t rush learning. Ask all the questions (even the stupid ones). Be confident in yourself. Respect the machines. Spend more time on your designs. Enjoy the process more than the outcome.

See more of Heather's work by following her on Instagram: @htwoodshop

Check out similar courses:

Woodworking Certificate

Green Woodworking Certificate

Chair Making

Chair Making Design/Build

Woodworking Unplugged

Woodworking for Women

Intro to the Woodshop

Spoon and Bowl Carving