Can you believe it?! This year is our 30th year Anniversary at Earthwise Architectural Salvage! With over three decades of salvage history, let’s take a look at how Earthwise has grown and where it’s going next:
1991: In Kurt’s backyard, Earthwise was born. Tired of seeing reusable building materials go in the landfill, Kurt Petrauskas and Roy Hunter (the original owner of Second Use!) took matters into their own hands. Originally from deconstruction sites, they started collecting and selling salvaged items to like-minded builders and homeowners of the area.
1992: Kurt and Roy went their separate ways in creating Earthwise and Second Use. Each with their own unique visions of salvage, Earthwise and Second Use are still friendly competitors to this day. The salvage industry was starting to make a splash in Seattle during this time, and Earthwise was starting to grow.
1993: In 1993, the first Earthwise “brick and mortar” location was a parking lot in Kenmore. He built a shed, using it as a workshop and for housing many of his finds. Earthwise was at this location for 4 years, and was officially opened 7 days a week after hiring his first employee (who was an adjoining fence neighbor!).
1997: After Kenmore, Kurt moved to 7th and Lander. Though a little rough around the edges, it was the first real building of Earthwise!
2002: In early 2002, Earthwise opened its location at 2462 First Ave. S known as the “Big Red Barn!”
2005: A couple of years later, Earthwise moved just a few blocks over to 3447 4th Ave S. which is what we know as Earthwise today.
2014: In 2014, Earthwise expanded to its second location in Tacoma. Kurt noticed many customers were traveling from the southern region to get materials for their homes. That, along with having too much inventory to know what to do with, the Tacoma store opened in July of 2014 at a vintage sawmill.
2018: In 2018, Kurt bought a home on the coast. Spending a lot of time in Aberdeen, he realized the potential in salvage with many older homes. Aberdeen is a hub in Grays Harbor County, and people are buying property in the region. In July of 2018, our Aberdeen location opened!
“What was true back then is true today. We waste in society, dispose of things before they reach close to their full potential. After 10 years on my own, having retail staff support made it all possible, each joining in the company with similar ideas and ethics. What we do is the main reason why all of us work here. Earthwise wouldn’t be here right now without the commonality of thought around reuse of materials. I am grateful for staff and customers that have made all of this possible.” – Kurt Petrauskas, Owner of Earthwise, 30 years and counting.