I have played drums since I was 11, playing guitar and singing on garage bands came little later. I also repaired guitars a little bit back then (didn’t know then what I was doing for sure) so I had guitar making in mind quite early. But before I became a luthier I had to work on construction sites, on a factory line etc. I did also learn percussions (mainly Cuban & Senegalese) and graduated as a professional musician with double bass as main instrument.

Just when I thought I was going to be a professional bass player/teacher for the rest of my life (I was 34 at the time), my back problems got me in such a bad condition that I couldn’t practice or do gigs – hardly even walk. I also had big problems with my instrument, it had to go through some serious repairs and it was difficult time for me with bad back and bad loan basses.

The time was right for me to go for my long-time dream and get my education for lutherie. First I fell in love with work itself, then the woods and finally – when I made my first Irish Bouzouki – the sound!

It was a fantastic feeling, somewhat like a religious awakening I think.

Work. Material. Sound.


I graduated from Ikaalinen College of Arts and Crafts, Guitar Making Department in 2011 with excellent grades and a graduating scolarship from Jussi Ala-Kuha’s memorial fund. I had already made instruments since 2009 under my wife Tanja’s company and I also worked at our own workshop the whole last school year. I have studied lutherie with luthier Anssi Nuutinen, masterluthier Rauno Nieminen and masterluthier Ari-Jukka Luomaranta.

I became a full time luthier & entrepreneur in July 2012.

My philosophy for the work is something like: “Be true to yourself and to your work”. And because of that I’m also not going to hire anybody to work here; I do only as much instruments I can in my lifetime and my customers can always be sure they’re made by me.

Becoming a luthier was very natural step for me. My dream is to make instruments that you dream of.


Kristian Wetterstrand