Skip to content

Meet the Makers: Sculpting

A walk through our workshop is inspiring – not only to see the furniture passing through the stages of production, but also to witness the diverse group of makers under one roof, focused on building something of true beauty and lasting value.

We look forward to giving you an insider’s peek into areas of our workshop in the coming weeks.

All visible surfaces, corners and joints on every piece of our furniture are carefully hand sanded using a series of sandpapers and files of varying degrees. This is arduous work, but critical to making an heirloom quality piece that will withstand the demands of exterior use. Throughout the finishing process and again before coating, each piece is meticulously inspected to ensure a flawless surface.


Akeem has been with McKinnon and Harris for two years and joined the team after going to school for welding.

What did you do before working with McKinnon and Harris?

I worked for a distribution warehouse prior to going to school for welding. I was actually introduced to McKinnon and Harris through the school.

How long have you been with McKinnon and Harris?

I’ve been with McKinnon and Harris for two years. I started in sculpting and then worked in ECC for a little bit before taking over the sandblasting booth for refurbishing. I am now back in sculpting!

Why McKinnon and Harris?

McKinnon and Harris produces high quality furniture under one roof - it’s truly amazing to see the process and the finished product.

What do you like to do outside of work?

I make hip hop music. I create the lyrics and then work with the studio to record, mix it and distribute it.

What's your favorite thing about living in Richmond?

I enjoy being close to family. There are a lot of museums to visit that people often overlook.

What's your favorite book?

My brother recently wrote a science fiction book - it’s called Fortuitous Fate by Antoine Jones.

Favorite dessert?

Plain cheesecake.

Get to know alex

Alex grew up surrounded by artists and has always enjoyed working with his hands. He worked for an industrial painting company before joining McKinnon and Harris.

What did you do before working with McKinnon and Harris?

I worked with an industrial painting company for 8 years and painted everything from rollercoasters to chemical tanks. I was then the Field Safety Coordinator for 5 years but had a desire to work more with my hands again, which is how I found McKinnon and Harris.

What’s your favorite piece of furniture and why?

Our Virginia Benches. I like working on them and seeing the final appearance. The backs require intricate radius work and precision when sculpting.

What do you like to do outside of work?

I enjoy taking something old and making it look new again. I worked on a cool project where I refinished church pews from a neighborhood church.

Are there any makers or artists you admire?

My Dad was an artist who was well known for his ability to restore antiques to their original condition. I grew up around art and craft and always admired my dad.

What's your favorite book?

The Lord of the Rings trilogy - it has great storytelling.

If you could participate in any Olympic sport, which would it be?

Soccer! I played soccer growing up and love watching the World Cup.

Meet the Makers: Hand Joinery

Subscribe To Our Newsletter