July 23, 2016
Thomas Houha Designs
Where did your business name come from? Is there an interesting story behind it?
We named our business after Tom. His last name ‘Houha’ always gets attention and is hard to forget, so it was the natural choice.
Have you always been passionate about design?
Yes, Tom designed and built his first treehouse at age ten, and it was no wonder he grew up to be an architect. He always has a sketchpad nearby and plethora of designs in his head.
Why did you start working in this particular craft?
As an architect, Tom enjoyed model building. He embraced the use of a laser cutter and 3D printer that allowed him to create and produce an array of intricate designs. Soon he was making model kits of architectural features and geometric orbs. This was the beginning of Thomas Houha Designs.
What do you think sets your designs apart from others?
Tom’s skill as an architect and an artist allows him to create model kits that come together in a distinct manner. They are his signature designs.
Have you had any major failures? If so, what were some important insights gained?
We have had no great failures, just not enough time to produce all the crazy designs in Tom’s head. Sometimes it is a bit of a challenge to stay focused on one design to completion while so many others are trying to get out there. Goals and deadlines are our best motivators.
What has been your proudest moment since creating your business?
When we reached the point that the success of the business was assured and we could quit our day jobs! Yeah!!!
How does the city you live in influence your work?
The city of Portland influences our business in so many ways. Its architecture and bridges have been a focus for many of our most successful products.
What are some inspirations for your work?
Geometry, space travel, nature and all things nerdy.
What are some tips or suggestions you’d like to offer to fellow makers?
Life is short. Do what you love and love what you do. How’s that for a cliche? But it’s true!