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Tyler Ceola

Tyler is an American guitar maker, building one-of-a-kind guitars out of his shop located in the heart of the Ozark’s. His passion for woodworking began 15 years ago when he started making furniture.

Photography by Kyle McCarthy @thekylemccarthy

Hey Tyler! Give us a quick intro.

My name is Tyler Ceola, I am the owner/operator of Ceola Farmstead Furniture and Ceola Guitars. I'm located in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

How did you get into guitar making?

I have built furniture for about 15 years and several years ago a friend asked if I had ever thought about making a guitar. I’ve always been involved with music and couldn’t get the question out of my head. And then six years ago I took a two-week class in North Carolina to learn the basics of guitar construction. As soon as I completed the course, I could not wait to get started on building guitars and I’ve been obsessed ever since, learning and refining my process.

What is the value of a handmade guitar versus a mass-produced guitar?

Don’t get me wrong, there is definitely a place for factory-made guitars, however a handmade guitar allows much more attention to detail; wood tones and aesthetics, sustain of the soundboard, strength without overbuilding and killing the sound, playability, comfort, and a custom look if desired. Each handmade instrument is truly one of a kind. Sound is distinct to each builder, however tone and playability is customizable for each guitar

What was it like to quit your day job and go full time into woodworking? Any advice you would give for someone wanting to step out on their own?

Quitting my day job was intimidating; it was something I wrestled with for about a year. I felt called to work full time in my shop and honestly, once we made the decision, I started getting order after order—I still can't keep up! My advice for someone looking to do the same is this: few things are fatal, leaving a job is not one of them. It very well could be the best career move you’ll ever make. I found that leaving my job allowed me to give my business the attention it needed to actually get off the ground.

That’s awesome. How’d you get the word out about your business? Do you envision bringing on some other craftspeople to help meet demand?

At first it was very slow. I just talked to people I worked with and pushed my Facebook page. My Etsy shop has been very helpful for my furniture business, and selling my first guitar has been the best jump-start in getting my business off the ground without much overhead. Lots of patience and hard work pays off. The growth of my business presents an opportunity to involve others with not just building guitars and furniture, but also joining me in my life and faith.

You live in a house you built yourself, build your own furniture, have chickens and horses, and work for yourself. What does it mean for you to live simply and do your own thing?

To my wife and I, living simple means spending time on our farm, growing vegetables, riding horses, playing with our pups, sailing on the lake, and working on projects around the house. We really enjoy hard work so that’s typically what we’re doing when we’re not “at work.”

Okay, so tell us a bit more about building your home?

We did not want a mortgage so building it ourselves was the best solution. We drew up a rough blueprint and building the house took about 13 months. We would come down and work a couple of hours in the evening after work, and then 12 hour days every weekend. We live in a valley so we built our house on stilts to lift it off of the ground about 3 feet in case of flooding. During the build we really only had one permit we needed to get, and that was for sewage. We live outside of city code so we were able to do our own plumbing and electrical work. Our water source is 100% rain water. We collect rain from gutters, it goes through a 20 gallon “first flush” system that gets drained after the rain stops; this ensures that we are only collecting water once the roofs are clean. We have 4500 gallons of storage which lasts us about 5 months without a drop of rain. A pump brings the water from the tanks to the house and goes through a paper filter, carbon filter and UV filter so the water is 100% purified.Many would consider our home a tiny house as it is 500 sq ft. It feels like way more house than that because it is so open. We rent it out on airbnb and guests really seem to love it! Even though it's a long process, building a house is something we plan on doing again.

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What do you think about the wool and prince shirts?

I absolutely love the Wool&Prince shirts! They’re very comfortable, I really like the tailor fit, and they just look sharp. Wool&Prince shirts are my go-to now whenever I walk into my closet. Looks like they have another brand ambassador in me as I’ve been recommending these shirts to anyone and everyone.

Tyler is 6 ft, 175 lbs, and wears a size M slim button-down. You can read more about Tyler and Ceola Guitars at

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