A Q&A With Founder Jordan Vaughn


From past days of woodworking in an animal barn to furnishing some of the highest-end homes in the state, we sat down with founder Jordan Vaughn to get the scoop on the evolution of high tech-woodworking company Vonmod.

Over the years, local design-build manufacturer Vonmod has been at the center of some of our favorite projects: from the BOSS.architecture home we featured last fall to Julie Doman’s home featured in our current issue, to the show-stopping sculpture and reception desk at Roth Living that made our Spring 2019 issue. From their start in a barn in Castle Rock to the design and building of their own production facility to the upcoming opening of a new showroom, we caught up with founder Jordan Vaughn to learn more about Vonmod’s past, present, and future.
Tell us a little about Vonmod and its overall approach to design.

While the company has evolved in the things that we actually create over the past two decades, my passion is all about collaboration and creating spaces with presence beyond form and function — spaces that really take on a life of their own. You really get lit up about what you do when you get to work with inspired architects and designers and help their ideas come to fruition. We have been fortunate to be aligned with the types of people and projects that are authentic to our purpose for pursuing this type of work in the first place. Finding presence in the work is where the age old phrase “fast is slow, slow is fast” resonates. When you take the time to pause and think before acting rather than rushing, the outcome is vastly improved.

The philosophy that underlies every one of Vonmod’s creations is simple: to partner with talented project teams and build beautiful, timeless and effortlessly elegant custom-designed kitchens, bathrooms, closets and furniture that are superior in concept, design, materials, quality and execution. We also provide outstanding service to clients and fellow collaborators at all levels and at every stage of engagement — from initial concepts and development through to final on-site installation and warranty.

At the heart of what we do is our willingness to forge strong, positive and rich collaborative relationships with inspired architects, contractors, designers and end users as well as our internal team, so that your vision, your passions and your ideas succeed and are realized at the highest level.  Talking with Kevin Stephenson of BOSS the other day, he mentioned “every client is our next best referral,” which really aligns with the way Vonmod views our work as well.

In collaboration with Arch11, Vonmod created the fin-like structure that borders the staircase of Roth Living’s Broadway showroom, which adds an architectural and sculptural detail to the space. Photo by James Florio and featured in our Spring 2019 issue.

You’ve been in your Vonmod-designed studio in Globeville for nearly a decade. Have there been any new developments to the space or the technology inside?

When I originally started Vonmod, it was as a vehicle to explore creativity and design. Since then, it has gone through a number of iterations including the original solid wood workshop in Castle Rock, to the design practice of Von Design, to The Maker Lab, and even the eventual design and building of our high-function production facility in Globeville in 2012. We have since expanded into a neighboring warehouse that has allowed us to continue growing our team and output capacity while consistently improving our quality of product to the highest level possible. Vonmod’s continual investments into technology, equipment, and learning new processes, has broadened our capabilities. We’ve discovered new frontiers in manufacturing which we feel are far from limited to mere boxes and cabinets — we create timeless interiors that endure. Long after the price is paid, the beauty of our work still remains. 

The other recent infrastructure project that we are excited about is our new ‘zero glue line’ infrared edgebander that is taking our edge quality and available options to a whole new level. Also, our new and improved plant layout and MES (Manufacturing Execution System) helps us more effectively move materials from the computer screen, through the manufacturing facility and warehouse and off to the install site with clarity and peace of mind in a way that was unimaginable before. What this means to our customers is peace of mind and an ultimately more enjoyable and frictionless customer experience.

The Vonmod team is made up of architects, designers, and craftspeople.

What’s the culture of the Vonmod team?

We have developed a team of exceptionally talented individuals who each bring their ability to problem-solve, tweak, improve, and share the vision we’ve laid out. I consider myself fortunate as both founder and entrepreneur to be the lead of a team of creative, highly-focused architects and artisans with the discipline to show up at their best and deliver projects at the highest level. Vonmod is a unique breed of individual who is curious about learning, is always thinking ahead and has the skills to physically build things.

As we grow, we are always keeping our eyes out for architects and craftspeople that are looking to transition into this new and exciting ”fourth industrial revolution,” with a focus on our specific niche and architecturally-tested integrated project delivery methodology. It really is a fun time to be in an industry with so much opportunity for positive improvements.

Vonmod did all the millwork for this Cherry Creek home designed by BOSS.architecture and featured in our Fall 2020 issue. Photo by Justin Martin.

Recently, you’ve started to fill your portfolio with more high-end kitchen cabinetry projects. What inspired this shift?

The answer is really simple. When we sat down to think about it, it became clear that we did our best work with fully-engaged collaborators and clients with vision and passion. Working with people who have a mission and who always show up as their best makes a huge difference in the course of your working life and career. Ultimately, we love working with inspired teams and surrounding ourselves with projects that we want to do and will provide the most value. Our clients often walk to the beat of a different drum and aren’t looking for standard cabinetry but looking to create a legacy, lasting beauty or something significant. 

We didn’t want to just produce boxes and cabinets, we wanted to deliver the exceptional and forge meaningful relationships. We wanted to do things that stretch us and create objects and spaces of beauty. For that reason, we started aligning with our ideal client profile, which happened to involve high-end modern, flat panel custom cabinetry projects and a carefully curated library of luxury materials convenience options. A trend we are seeing more of is the ‘performance kitchen’ idea that aims to elevate the art of living with clever conveniences that can transform and make a space dynamic.

A custom cabinet package by Vonmod unifies the interior of this Basalt home design by Moment Design Studio, an example of one of Vonmod’s favorite type of “whole house” projects. Photo by JC Buck.

What kind of projects do you enjoy the most and why?

The most satisfying projects are actually the ongoing relationships we develop with our top-tier architects, designers, contractors and clients—especially in the broader realm of what we call ‘whole house’ projects, where all the rooms must work cohesively together while accommodating scope and budget and placing attention on every detail. After completing a few projects with a new project team, we’ve been able to collectively hit our stride and start finding efficiencies that lead to the ideal flow: where it no longer feels much like work. 

Looking at the rest of 2021 and beyond, what’s next for Vonmod?

I think what inspires me the most is integration of new technologies and systems to improve the way in which we collaborate, manufacture and deliver on our work. My focus is on empowering our team and improving the quality of the products at their core, building cabinets that stand the test of time where clients can feel like they made the best investment they could in working with us. 

Our new showroom space that we are expanding into will also be an exciting arena to showcase a variety of materials and innovative detailing and resources that we have been developing as a more effective way to communicate our unique and streamlined product features to specifiers and clients alike. We love working hyperlocal when we can, and there is so much development going on in surrounding Denver, Boulder and Aspen. We have such an amazing collection of team members, clients, collaborators and projects right now—there is a lot to be grateful for.