Jay Lichty

Ukulele Craftsman


Photography by Corrie Woods

Owner of Lichty Guitars

In a small shop tucked into the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Jay Lichty builds custom handmade acoustic guitars and ukuleles. When the Great Recession crippled the construction business in 2008, Jay turned his woodworking experience and craftsmanship from building homes to building guitars and ukuleles. After making his first one and taking a 10-day building workshop, he was hooked and hasn’t looked back.


Jay has crafted over 200 instruments in the past seven years, each piece one-of-a-kind and heirloom quality that will last for generations. His ukuleles and guitars have been purchased all over the globe, to hobbyists as well as professionals like Bonnie Raitt.



I love dogs. I have always had one in my life. We got Ziggy from the local animal shelter. I was home eating lunch when I saw her picture in the paper as the “pet of the week”. I put my sandwich down and showed the picture to my wife. We jumped in the car and raced over to meet her. I know she is only on loan from the Universe and that makes her even that much more awesome.


Lichty “Django” Archtop Ukulele


My archtop ukulele, “Django”, is at the top of the list of the things to grab in the event of a fire. This instrument is now part of my DNA. I built it for myself out of ideas and dreams that were floating around Technicolor in my mind and I play it every day.

Buy Now$Custom

Endangered Species Chocolate


If chocolate is a vice then this one is mine… or at least the one I’ll cop to.  I’d like to say I buy these to do my part to help the endangered animals of our planet. Truth is, they are just flat out tasty and contributing to a good cause is icing on the cake. I buy them by the carton.

Buy Now$28

Little Mountain Pottery Clay Lamp


I found this lamp about 15 years ago at a local arts & crafts show. It still makes me smile. It has pairs of critters all over it. The dog’s name is Rudi.

Buy Now$custom

Bose Noise Cancelling headphones


One day I saw Corrie, my wife, wearing a pair of these. She asked if I wanted to try them out. I was blown away by the comfort and sound. They made my good headphones sound cheap and feel bulky. The noise-cancelling feature is amazing.

Buy Now$249

Ford Flex

Ford-Flex-and-Ziggy copy-min

I was always a pickup truck kind of guy. I needed one for my construction business.  When the guitar business took over I had to have something that could hold lots of instruments. We found the Flex. It’s roomy, ultra-comfortable and quirky looking.  Hands down, the right choice for us. And Ziggy loves it!


Buy Now$29,600

Handmade Handplayed Book

Handmade-Handplayed-Book copy-min

This book kick-started my creativity engine when I started building guitars and ukuleles. Total inspiration. It will always have a place on my coffee table.

Buy Now$35

Kalahari Desert Oil Painting


We got to do a once-in-a-lifetime trip to the Kalahari Desert in South Africa. The artist, my sister-in-law, Cindy, was on the trip with us. She captured the sky and clouds perfectly. This painting brings me great memories of that trip.


Buy Now$custom

Antique Tool


This little guy was in a box of old tools that Corrie bought for me one Christmas. Turns out it was designed to aid in the tying of fishing flies. I love it because it is old and cool looking and I was able to repurpose it for my work in the shop.


Buy Now$10+



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