Participating Makers

Makers are the heartbeat of the festival, providing advice and sharing their enthusiasm for their craft.

There is no substitute for the combination of experience and sheer hard work. The luthiers appearing at the festival are some of the best, and attendees will have a chance to talk to them about their techniques and methods.

Liam Kirby

Liam Kirby has been building ukuleles and guitars for 4 years in Bristol under his 'Wunderkammer Musical Instrument Co.' moniker.
He was first inspired to build ukes by an unbelievably loud 1930s Martin Soprano, and his work takes further inspiration from the music and instrument builders of the early 20 th Century, particularly Chris Knutsen and the Larsen Brothers.

Visit Liam's Website

Kevin Mulcock

Kevin Mulcock is a returning exhibitor having enjoyed displaying and discussing his ukuleles at MUMF2018. He builds KM-Ukuleles in his spare time from his modified garage in the garden. Kevin originally started making ukuleles on a whim, in an attempt to quell his UAS (Ukulele acquisition syndrome!) and as a stress reliever. Highly inspired, motivated and taught a number of skills by Pete Howlett, he has been making ukuleles for 3 years whilst also working full time in Operating Theatres for the NHS and continuing to study for his Masters Degree.
Kevin is continually developing his KM-Ukulele brand whilst experimenting with his ukulele design, style, methods and processes...(and he enjoys playing a bit too!)

Visit Kevin's Website

Richard Cross

Richard made his first few guitars in the 1950’s whilst still in school. After that he studied pharmacy at Cardiff and had his own business in Caerphilly in the late 1960’s. However the urge to make bigger and better things was strong and he started an engineering and electronics firm in 1972 which continued for the next 25 years.
During this time, significant stays in faraway places re-ignited the idea of creating a small guitar and in 1997 early models under the name of ‘Shapelywood’ emerged. These instruments evolved over a few hundred pieces, into some highly desirable items mostly made to special order.
Eventually, ukuleles took over and they have remained the focus of work up to the present. Be aware, these instruments are a little ‘left field’ sometimes.

Visit Richard's Website

Tom Ziegenspeck

Having started out as a youngster intending to become a classical guitarist, Tom took his guitar to be repaired one day and became fascinated with the processes in the repair workshop.
Having gained experience working there he went on to study luthiery for 4 years at the University of Applied Science in Markneukirchen, Germany. On the course he learnt to build a variety of instruments including classical and steel-strung guitars and Irish bouzouki's. In his 3rd year he specialized in making high quality ukuleles and then served an internship at Pete Howlett Ukulele in North Wales.
After graduating, he worked for 2 years at Pete Howlett Ukulele as Pete’s assistant before setting up his own workshop: Ziegenspeck Ukuleles in Rudolstadt, Germany.

Visit Tom's Website

Lawrie Reekie

Lawrie Reekie is very much a hobby builder. Having been introduced to ukulele playing on a holiday 6 years ago he soon found a new passion for seeking the perfect tone and playability. This developed into the continual acquisition of new ukuleles until deciding to try to build his own. After an interesting but not too successful start he invested in a Pete Howlett course to make a tenor which as you can expect resulted in an excellent ukulele. However the quest and experimentation continues in an attempt to produce a self designed ukulele which even comes close to those Howlett machines.
Now in semi retirement he hopes that his engineering background might help him to accomplish that dream and to produce instruments good enough to be used by young and new players. The brand Ecosselele has been created in anticipation of being successful.

Volker Grass

Volker started making ukuleles as a hobby builder 9 years ago when he built the first ukuleles under the Bugle brand. After playing guitar for nearly 30 years he was fascinated by this tiny, little 'thing' and wanted to play his own ukuleles.
His technical background, as a design engineer for special purpose machines, helped him to design and manufacture those first instruments. He tried out lots of different shapes, scales, bracing patterns and wood combinations to find the ukulele sound and style he was looking for.
In 2015-2016 Volker took a sabbatical from his job and then joined Pete Howlett Ukulele for a four week internship in June 2016. After this experience and his return to Germany he decided to enlarge his workshop and became the first professional ukulele builder in his hometown: Solingen.

Visit Volker's Website
Visit Volker's Facebook Page

Aiden Smith

Based in Derbyshire, Aiden Smith splits his time between teaching woodwork in a small local school, running adult beginner woodworking courses and working on commissions.
After being given a ukulele and finding a passion for playing it, Aiden decided to make one for himself rather than buying his next one. Having enjoyed making his own soprano ukulele, he decided to produce more and now focusses the majority of his spare time on making and developing his instruments.

Rick Thorpe

Rick Thorpe makes ukuleles from recycled oil cans. He grew up in South Africa and the inspiration came from the home-made "blik" (tin) guitars played by street musicians there. The idea was born when he started playing (and of course fell in love with) the ukulele. So the first RICkulele was made in 2012.
Rick has had a stand at WOMAD Festival ever since, where the electro-accoustic instruments often appeal to performance musicians.
For every RICkulele sold, a donation is made to the charity ‘Instruments for Africa’ which sends reconditioned musical instruments to schools in southern Africa.

Visit Rick's Website
Visit Rick's Facebook Page
See Rick on YouTube

Terry Brand

Terry Brand is 56 and makes Tewin Ukuleles. A Hertfordshire artist who has played the guitar since he was 17, he turned to the ukulele seven years ago.
After making an Altoids tin ukulele based on plans from the internet, he has progressed to making traditional tonewood soprano ukuleles for the last two years.

Coming Soon ...

More makers appearing at MUMF 2019 will be added as they are confirmed - check back soon to see who they are!

If you're a maker of ukulele and would like to have the chance to exhibit for free, please use the contact form to let Helen know.