Cabinetry, counters, and molding
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Canon City, CO
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Cedar Rose Woodworks is about one man’s romance with his high school sweetheart, and with wood. Dan Madone is a native of Canon City, a small community located in south central Colorado. He has lived in the same community his entire life and currently lives and operates his business near his childhood home.
Dan primarily attended parochial schools growing up, including the historical Holy Cross Abbey during his high school years. It was at “The Abbey”, as locals refer to it, that Dan would discover the loves of his life.
At the age of sixteen Dan met his sweetheart, Karen. Karen came from an Air Force family that had moved frequently in her early years. She was born in Shreveport, Louisiana and moved to Canon City when her father retired. Their families were acquaintances through their church where Dan and Karen first got to know each other.
After a period of living and growing their separate lives, Dan and Karen became reacquainted at a rodeo dance they attended and the two began dating again. Apparently Dan and Karen had the right chemistry which led Dan to his next discovery.
Which romance came first doesn’t really matter. The emotions that come with young love often inspire poetry and songs. In this love romance the inspiration was without any doubt true art. While attending high school at the Abbey, Dan took a “free art” class where the teacher allowed the students to pick their own projects.
Dan had an interest in relief carvings so he chose to carve a bouquet of roses in a piece of red cedar wood. It isn’t uncommon for a suitor to want to give a bouquet of roses to win the affections of a young maiden, however Dan was truly inspired and his first work with wood was a gift to Karen. It was not only memorable but it was also most remarkable!
Discovering he had a real interest in wood, an enterprising young man that he was and still is, Dan began to make opportunities happen. At the Abbey there was a group of maintenance men on staff, each with a specialty craft and their own workshop.
Dan approached the carpenter, who had a well-equipped shop, and asked if he could use the shop to work on his next project. With an agreement to clean the shop at the end of each work day, Dan began work in the shop learning the tools of a carpenter. Dan was motivated and inspired. Whether it was love for the wood, the challenges of making something with his hands, or the affection of his sweetheart, Dan developed a natural gift.
It was during this time period that Dan realized he wanted to work with wood as a vocation, not just carpentry, but a craftsman building cabinetry and furniture. He continued to build small pieces like jewelry boxes in the Abbey carpenter shop, but it was when he made an arrangement with a local business named Strik’s Second Hand Store that he began to learn from another craftsman.
Harry Strickland was well known in the community; almost everyone would frequent his store in search of treasures. In the back of his store Harry had a shop where he would take the claw legs off old furniture and build new oak tables to sell. It took some extreme measures for Dan to prove his desire and determination to Harry, but when he did Harry taught Dan the techniques needed to build quality furniture pieces. One piece Dan built under Harry’s tutelage was a red cedar chest that he gave Karen for her nineteenth birthday and yes, there was a hand carved rose on the lid.
Dan and Harry Strickland worked out a deal for Dan to build cedar chests and other furniture pieces from cedar and sell them along with Harry’s oak pieces, but Harry died unexpectedly and the plan never materialized.
However, Dan wasn’t deterred. He rented a small building at the Abbey and continued to build and sell cedar chests, jewelry boxes, and other pieces people would request, until he graduated from the Abbey. His venture as an entrepreneur continued after graduation where he worked at a local grocery store.
Dan arranged to display pieces of his work near the store entrance with a sign stating “Not for Sale but Built to Order”, and with this marketing strategy it was no time before the orders began coming in.
It was around this time that Dan met Charlie Sheppard, a cabinet maker in Penrose, Colorado, who was instrumental in teaching Dan techniques for building kitchen and bathroom cabinetry. Dan continued to work the night shift at the grocery store while assisting Charlie at his shop during the day.
Meanwhile Dan would continue working on weekends at his own small shop to fill orders. The money he made from the sale of his pieces was used to buy tools for his craft, and the beginnings of Cedar Rose Woodworks.
Dan and Karen married shortly after Dan graduated from the Abbey. They bought a small home in Canon City with a small garage where Dan could set up a small shop to build jewelry boxes, baby cribs, shelving units, and of course cedar chests with those hand carved roses.
He continued to work at the grocery store and at the same time he worked evenings and his days off from the grocer to build and fill the orders that came in. As the demand grew for his work, so did his need for the proper tools for his trade and the room to work. Again this enterprising young man worked out an arrangement to share a building at an affordable cost, and with this move Dan began to build quality furniture and cabinetry with the help of three new employees. It was at this time that Cedar Rose Woodworks was formally christened, and choosing the name was as natural as could be.
The hand carved rose in the cedar chests became Dan’s signature to the art he had been creating since the first one crafted in 1983. As the end of the 1980’s approached Cedar Rose Woodworks, which had focused much of their attention to building southwest style furniture during that popular trend, moved towards building quality oak furniture and for a period supplied product to Kacey Fine Furniture, a quality furniture outlet based in Denver, Colorado.
In 1989 Cedar Rose Woodworks completed their first complete kitchen job that included all the cabinets and countertops, thus beginning their venture as a quality craftsmen of kitchens, baths, offices, and unique spaces.
During the 1990’s, Karen and Dan bought the home they live in today to make room for their growing family. Blessed with their first child Mindy, then a second daughter Cassie, they bought a home with more room but with a lot of needed work.
Dan put his skills to the test and remodeled the home from top to bottom, literally raising the roof another level. The property also had a rustic workshop made from an old military barrack. Over the years, and at three major expansions, this workshop has become the manufacturing home of Cedar Rose Woodworks where work continues today.
Karen and Dan have a strong and unwavering faith in God, and they’re two of the most loving and kind-hearted people you’ll ever meet. Their devotion to each other is shared with the people they meet. Over the years they have put so much of themselves into Cedar Rose in many ways, and it shows today.
They now own their manufacturing building and showroom, and they have been blessed with great success in their business venture. At the turn of the new century Karen and Dan were blessed again with an answer to prayers in the form of a little boy.
They had two beautiful daughters, yet they had also wanted a son. However, the only way this could be was through adoption. Struggling through the fears of adopting an American baby they were moved by an article published in the local paper that addressed the tremendous need of Romanian orphans.
And so it was Mihai that left his Romanian orphanage and became part of the Madone family the weekend of Easter in the year 2000. With the exchange of pictures and translated letters, Mihai, or Michael as it is translated in English, recognized Karen the first moment he saw her, and he ran straight to her calling “Mommy, Mommy”! With this new addition, and the beginning of a new century, Cedar Rose Woodworks was on solid ground and growing.
The kitchen cabinetry business had become very competitive towards the end of the 1990’s and it became evident that custom built cabinetry wouldn’t be as profitable when competing with the major home improvement chains.
Dan found a company based in Salina, Kansas, that could manufacture cabinetry to customer specifications yet maintain quality, all while keeping costs affordable and competitive. Although Cedar Rose still builds custom cabinets when needed and desired by the customer, they now partner with Crestwood to fill most customer orders for cabinetry. In fact, Cedar Rose has been one of the top distributors for Crestwood products for many years now!
Today the techniques taught to Dan by Harry Strickland, along with his desire and determination to produce quality in everything he builds, Cedar Rose Woodworks continues to produce quality wood products and countertops.
They offer many varieties and styles to meet their customer’s needs and desires. With recent demand for granite countertops Cedar Rose Woodworks is now offering a wide variety of styles and colors to choose from. It’s a little harder to work with than wood, but Dan and his crew have taken their talents and skills to a new level in order to answer the demand.
What separates Cedar Rose Woodworks from the competition is their personal attention to detail. Cedar Rose Woodworks has a team of skilled craftsmen that includes Mike Caruso and Josh Edborg, with Dean Fish leading them as foreman and shop manager.
Dan isn’t a computer buff; he works with each customer personally and then produces a design by hand and on paper. He’s an artist and craftsmen and when it comes to wood you can trust him to meet and most likely exceed your expectations.
This site was designed for an artist to show their art because that is what fit Dan and his business the best. So look through the galleries and see what you can expect in your building or remodeling project. Then give him a call!
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