About Us

John was educated in the Classics, classical art, archaeology, history, and literature at Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island.  After graduation, John enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps, was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant and entered Naval Aviation Flight School, Pensacola, Florida where he earned his Naval Aviator wings.  Lt. App joined the Fleet Marine Corps at Marine Corps Air Station, El Toro, California and was later transferred to the Republic of Vietnam where he joined Marine Medium Helicopter 161 and flew combat in the northern sector of South Vietnam on the DMZ.  Lt. App was promoted to Captain and was awarded 16 Air Medals during his tour in Vietnam.

John entered the business world after the Marine Corps in the field of finance and worked for many years in various specialty financial businesses.

Over many years, John studied woodworking and applied his artistic background, passion, and skills to building specialty cabinetry, toys, breadboards, and furniture.  He enrolled in many courses over the years to enhance his woodworking skills and became professionally involved in fine woodworking in 1990.  He has reconstructed many kitchens and bathrooms over the years enhancing the layouts and designs with his eye for detail and love for wood.

In 2007 John moved to the big island of Hawaii and has continued his woodworking passion utilizing the magnificent native woods of Hawaii, namely Koa, Ohia, Mango, Kiawe, Milo, and Avocado.

John takes great pains to ensure that each item crafted in his workshop, elegantly displays the “soul” of each trees’ life.  All members of his staff are ardent believers in the proper usage and heritage of all woods with which they work.  This is no ordinary cabinet shop where sameness and straight grains are emphasized.  Each piece, whether a door, drawer, or face frame is individually crafted and receives caring treatment from the moment it is received as raw lumber until it is installed in your home.  Not one piece is manufactured outside the workshop by contract millwrights.  We do not use MDF or particle board in our workspace.  There are no shortcuts in proper woodworking.  Each piece crafted here is a work of art unto itself.

Read John’s story “A Shop Amongst Hawaiian Avocados” here.

Read more about John’s work from “At Home” magazine here.