Fifteen years ago I was working in IT and pursuing a passion for creating luxurious handcrafted soaps in my spare time. Realizing how much I enjoyed soap making, I decided to follow what I loved by working full time producing not only the deluxe soaps, but also moisturizing lotions, healing salves, healthy shampoos, and many other beautiful products. My son, David, soon joined me in this endeavor and together we have created a thriving business, Whidbey IslandNatural. Each product is thoughtfully created and skillfully manufactured by us. Today our shop is a fixture in Langley, WA, and our online and wholesale businesses are thriving! David Tiller
I fell in love with Whidbey Island in 1990, when my mother, Kim Tiller, and I moved to the island. I was eighteen years old and just graduated from Issaquah High School in Issaquah, WA. It was a magical place with scenic views, small towns and great fishing. I quickly entered community college and was commuting off the island for a few years.
I left the island in 1993 and attended Western Washington University for two years and then did a year abroad as a foreign exchange student in Hungary between 1995-1996. After graduating in 1996 I went back to school, realizing a carrier as an Anthropologist was not for me. Plus its a real tough field to "Dig into!" I took numerous computer courses and in late 1996 began working in the computer field as a contractor. Lets just say, computer programming, the corporate world and I did not get along well together.
I recruited myself into the business in 2000 after a stressful contract working at Microsoft. It was not a good fit for me seeing that my college degree was in anthropology and not computer science. The life of a programmer was "Leaching the soul out of me!" as I told my mother at the time. Thus was the beginning of our family business together!
We opened our first retail shop in Coupeville, Washington under the name Whidbey Island Soap Company, at the end of the pier in 2000. It's a beautiful town and a beautiful environment, but not enough space for a growing business making bath and skincare products. We moved to Langley, WA and opened our second store in 2001 and have been retailing our products here ever since. In mid 2007 my mother Kim, had a few small strokes which eventually led to a diagnosis of Moyamoya disease, a very rare brain disorder that strikes only two out of a million people. At the end of October she went to Stanford University Hospital where she underwent two major brain surgeries which saved her life. I remained on the island running the business during this time. Kim had to withdraw from the business for a while to recuperate. She returned to the business a few months later and is now back to her normal self! It was a scary time but we got through it.
After nine years of working six to seven day weeks I went on a vacation cruise with my grandparent's Roy and Lesley Van Riper in 2009. Little did I know that lightning would strike on this trip! I met the lady of my dreams, Gayle Wilkerson. A year lager, in 2010 I married my lovely wife Gayle Tiller on a sunset beach with lapping waves, and sea turtles in Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park on the big island of Hawaii. She's since moved up and joined me on the island from Los Angles, CA and we reside together on our small farm/home on the south end of Whidbey Island with two horses and numerous chickens!
Starting in 2014 my mother Kim and I changed the company name from "Whidbey Island Soap Company" to "Whidbey Island Natural" since we began making a wider variety of products and began wholesaling them in many stores throughout the Northwest.