In 1975, Ron Moore, lifelong Wabash resident, graduated from Purdue University and began his search for a career in biology. During his search, he worked with his father in construction, a job he had done throughout high school and college during the summers.
Ron’s father was a contractor and had a well-equipped shop, which Ron used to build furniture for him and some friends. One of his first pieces was a sewing cabinet he made for his wife, Kris Moore, before they were married. She still has it and still uses it 35 years later.
After a few years of working with his father, Ron decided to focus his attention on finishing work rather than continue his search for a biology job or continue working construction.
“After I started figuring it out, I thought, well, maybe I can make a living out of this. So I rented a building, bought the equipment and started doing what I’m doing,” Ron told The Paper of Wabash.
In 1978, Ron opened The Wood Shed to pursue his passion for woodwork. He works there with his wife, Kris, who used to own a dress shop in Wabash.
“I’m pretty lucky because I didn’t do all the research you’re supposed to do when starting a business. I just did it,” Ron said.
Ron approached woodworking in the same way. Other than working construction with his father and mandatory eighth grade woodshop, Ron had no formal training.
“I learned by trial-and error more than anything. Mostly I just work it out as I go. I’m still learning after 35 years,” he said.
Ron and Kris build custom furniture and cabinetry, do repair work, and stripping and finishing.
“We do all kinds of stuff, but my favorite is building something from nothing, or from a picture or drawing,” Ron said.
“A lot of times I just go from a picture of what someone likes. They’ll say I like this part, but I don’t like this or I want to change that. We make stuff that you can’t just go out and buy anywhere,” he said.
Ron plans to continue building custom furniture for as long as he can.
“I hope to do this as long as I’m physically able, which may be about 10 – 15 more years,” he said.
Kris and Ron do not have any children of their own, but Ron still has hope that someone will come along to carry on the business.
“I don’t have anyone to step up right now, but I would like someone to,” he said.
“It’s been fun because I like what I do,’ Ron said. “This little Wabash County has kept me busy for 35 years, so that’s pretty impressive. I just have certain clientele that keep coming back time and time again. I’ve been lucky that Wabash has made a living for me.”
The Wood Shed does work for both residential and business customers. They serve clients mostly in Wabash County, but have done work for out of state customers as well, and have gained their reputation mostly by word of mouth.
We’re here to provide a service for people they can’t get anywhere else,” said Ron. “When the time comes for some one of a kind item, or something to match other furniture, or anything people need done involving wood, we will provide that service.”