My name is Andreas Dopheide and I was born and raised in Bielefeld, Germany. I pounded my first nail into my parent's coffee table at the age of five and enjoyed a moment of deep satisfaction until my parents found it. This experience left a mark on my soul and another one on my behind!
After 13 long years of sitting still in school, I did a one year stint at an engineering school just to find out that engineers don't work with their hands much. So, I moved back home and on February 1, 1975 I began an apprenticeship at a small but fearless woodshop owned by Tischlermeister Dietrich Rickert in Bielefeld, Germany. Herr Rickert is 93 years old now and we still talk on the phone several times a year, and he is still calling me by my first name even though I passed my master exams in 1986 and became a Tischlermeister (master woodworker) myself. My desire to come to America began when my little sister Caterina spent a year as an exchange student at Emory University in 1980. She fell in love there, got married and never made it back to Germany. In 1995, I applied for a green card for my professional skills and my request was granted. Today I am proud to call myself an American.
I work mostly by myself because I enjoy the actual work. I do keep a musical crew around the shop and they include folks like Bach, Haendel, Mozart and Haydn. If you don't find me in the shop, I may be singing in the church choir or out fishing and hunting.