Founders Story - Lobstering and Design

Whitehead Island Lighthouse - Photograph by Lou Kellenberger

This time of year I often feel cooped up inside and long to get out on the water doing something active. Seeing the N.C. Wyeth paintings above reminded me of the homes built for the lighthouses where I used to spend time lobstering nearby on a regular basis.

There were three lighthouses I could see while fishing my normal area: Whitehead, Southern Island, and Two Bush. I usually fished very close to and had a great view of the Whitehead Island Lighthouse.

Currently with a young family that continues to grow, Hannah and I had to make a decision to either go lobstering full-time and sell The Rope Co. or take a break lobstering and go all-in on The Rope Co., seeing what might happen with it. We prayed and talked about it very much and it seemed God was leading us to take a leap of faith, leaving everything we and our families for generations knew so well and have depended on to make a living.

We decided to give The Rope Co. our full effort. It’s only been two years since that decision point. While I love The Rope Co., our team, what we’re building, and seeing great things happening here, I certainly miss much about lobstering.

I’m not sure what I miss most about lobstering - whether it’s the beauty you get to see and experience on the ocean of midcoast Maine on a regular basis, working hard physically, having something tangible to show at the end of the day, knowing you put a good hard-days work in, having complete and perfect focus what you’re doing all day, or just plain-old chasing and catching lobsters.

I usually moored my boat in Tenants Harbor and would go by Southern Island which is pictured below (imagine me in my lobster boat somewhere just outside of the frame) Today the island owned by the Wyeths, and where I kept my boat was near where theirs was.


Painters by Peter Ralston, 1997 photograph

Southern Island was always so beautiful to gaze at while coming in from haul.

For local lobstermen it’s a good place to catch lobsters, pogies (menhaden) and even go sea-duck hunting. The water is good and deep there so you can get right up against the shore, but you better be careful on the southern side of it where the rollers come in.

I can remember many a foggy days eyes peeled trying to look at the radar, compass, GPS and out my window all at the same time trying not to hit any other boats. Many times, all of sudden out of the fog there would be Southern Island and the lighthouse in all its glory and along with it, at the mouth of Tenants Harbor, the sun shining brilliantly.  What an amazing feeling as it feels like you’re leaving one universe and entering another; after coming out of the cold, dark, dangerous fog it would feel like entering the garden of Eden as you passed the island and entered into the sunlight and warmth.

These beautiful landscapes and buildings are the things that truly inspire most everything we design a The Rope Co. It’s mostly about color and texture. For instance, our recent color we came out with named “Wheat” was inspired by the dead grass in fields like the small one here in the photo. The darker colors and tones within the dead grass as they blow in the wind was what we were trying to replicate the best we could.

We can never perfectly replicate what God has already made perfect and beautiful, but we do the very best we can.


We have enjoyed and been grateful for all these things and we hope they are as inspiring to you as they are to us.

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