A Gifted Craftsman

After completing his technical training as a woodworker in Jamaica, Garfield Geddes, CEO of Finesse Custom Furnishing & Cabinetry Corp., moved to the United States. Geddes now has a thriving custom cabinetry business on Long Island where he uses his woodworking talents to provide clients with a multitude of design services, including finishing, millwork and furniture restoration.

Long Island Pulse: You are originally from Jamaica. How did growing up there influence your career path?
Garfield Geddes:
I was born in Kingston, Jamaica and grew up in nearby Portland, farming alongside my grandfather. His life lessons influenced me to put myself through school, where I served as an apprentice for a top finisher at a local carpenter’s shop. It was there that I learned about the dedication and skill that goes into woodworking. After high school, a furniture company in North Carolina recruited me to be a lead finisher, and from there I made my way to Long Island to start my business.

LIP: Why do you think people are so drawn to custom work, especially custom woodwork?
Custom cabinetry or custom work is popular mainly among those who have the ability to recognize quality craftsmanship and can appreciate the amount of effort that goes into the process. We all have odd spaces in our homes and can’t always find the right size or piece of furniture to fit that particular space. Custom cabinetry allows our clients to have exactly what they want and need, making it look as if the pieces came with the house.

LIP: What are some of the hot spots in a home that you are often asked to work on?
The kitchen, front entrances (especially front doors), as well as antique furniture and heirloom pieces are the bulk of our project requests. Many of our recurring clients and new prospects have decided to stay in their homes rather than move to a newer home, and so they often request our services to spruce things up. Front entrances are of big importance to homeowners, especially for curb appeal. A front entrance often reveals right away if your home is inviting or not.

Design Tip: Refinishing your cabinets is one of the most cost-effective ways to achieve the look and feel of a brand new kitchen without the expense of a total renovation.

lauren debellis

A former magazine editor, Lauren DeBellis has been writing and producing stories about home decorating and design for nearly ten years. She resides in East Northport with her husband.