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My name is Jeff Ballantyne, and I am the owner of Ring + Grove co.
Since kindergarten, I can remember always being intrigued with art and creating. This strong desire almost had me fail highschool, as I thought every hand out was to flip over and draw on the back!
I went through the common stages most young folks do where I had no idea what career choice I wanted to make. I have all my hours in a plumbing apprenticeship, and I worked for a log home building company until I met my amazing wife.
Without my wife Bethany, I'm not sure I would have had the confidence to begin this journey of becoming a full time craftsman. I definitely wouldn't be here today.
Providing for my family has always been on the top of my priority list, and I wanted to do that by self employment. I watched my father provide for a family of 6 working incredibly hard with no fear of what next week may bring, so it made things easier for me. I actually had a business carving wood for 3 years. I carved traditional kitchen products.
It was then, after almost 3 years I saw a wood shaving.. or maybe just looked at one differently. I wondered if it could be glued round with many layers, and if it would be strong or not. Turns out, its a common method for making rings which is called "Bentwood ring" making.
With the common methods taught online, there was not enough experience to make a product you could sell, that would last. That's where we are ahead of the game. My thousands of hours dedicated to mastering the wooden ring has been crucial in the creation of a Ring and Grove ring.
There is a little piece of my heart in each ring that is for sure. As much as I want to make a great product, I want to make a meaningful product. I wanted to create something that would touch a soft spot in the ring wearers heart.
For me, that soft spot is the outdoorsman in me that would wonder into the woods and find a grove, ponder life, and recharge. That's where I want to be!