Kira goes for gold with cabinet making course

Kira Van Druten and furniture

Award-winning apprentice Kira Van Druten says moving from Sydney to Melbourne to complete a cabinet-making course was one of the happiest decisions of her life.

Inspired by her positive high school experience, Kira chose Holmesglen and the MSF31113 Certificate III in Cabinet Making to continue her love of woodwork and gain the skills to one day start her own business.

“After placing third in New South Wales for ‘Industrial Technology - Timber’ during my HSC, it was clear this was something I was good at and enjoyed, so I decided to give cabinet making a go when I came to Melbourne. I am so happy I did.”

Now, Kira is one of the industry’s top emerging cabinet makers, taking her skills to the national stage at WorldSkills Australia.

  • WorldSkills Australia – Melbourne East Region, Gold medalist (2019)
  • Holmesglen Top Furniture Maker Award (2020)
  • Holmesglen Apprentice of the Year finalist (2020)

What does a cabinet maker do?

Cabinet makers work on various projects and use different skills related to the manufacturing, installation and production of furniture.

At Holmesglen, cabinet making apprentices use specialist and industry-standard computer numerical control (CNC) machines.

They also learn how to estimate and cost jobs, undertake environmentally sustainable work and measure and calculate accurately.

During her apprenticeship, Kira has worked on a diverse range of high-end residential cabinet-making projects.

“I’ve have learned how to problem solve and always look at what worked and what could have been done differently, so the next time you do something, you can improve your productivity.

“This has helped me a lot in my apprenticeship, because it has given my boss the confidence to give me more responsibility when completing projects.

“If you enjoy working in a team, being creative and problem solving, you will thoroughly enjoy working in this industry.

“I am always learning new things, which I absolutely love. It sometimes makes you feel like an artist.”

What does Kira enjoy most about cabinet making?

Kira says the satisfaction of seeing through a cabinetry project from conception to delivery is the most pleasing part of her apprenticeship and new career.

She also embraces the constant learning opportunities each new project offers.

“I enjoy being able to stand back from your work, feel proud for what you have achieved, and then witness the client's happiness when you complete a job."

Find out more about our furniture and upholstery courses and how to apply. 

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