Jared Johnson of Holiday Custom Motorcycles

updated Oct 24, 2019
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(Image credit: June Bhongjan)

Name: Jared Johnson
Location: Eliot; Portland, Oregon
Size: 1,800 square feet
Years lived in: 2 years; Rented

Carefully crafted and thoughtfully designed, Holiday Customs’ distinct aesthetic is the perfect marriage of sleek modern shapes and raw vintage character — all packaged into a ridable work of art. Jared Johnson is the one-man band behind Holiday Custom Motorcycles. After outgrowing his small garage, Jared found a 1800 square foot warehouse in Northeast Portland. Not only does Jared spend most of his time building and creating in this space, but it also serves as an enjoyable summer hangout, a place for friends to gather and toss back a few beers.

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(Image credit: Java Fernandez)

Jared is a true artisan who followed his heart into fascinating world of motorcycles. He grew up watching his dad build motorcycles and automobiles, and decided to take what he learned from his father to bring us Holiday Customs. Holiday gives its clients the opportunity to own something special — something handcrafted, with one-of-a kind creativity, at fair, affordable prices.

Finding forgotten barn motorcycles and seeing the potential beyond the rust is one of Jared’s natural talents. Transforming them is another. He is one of the few people I know that can make something out of nothing (just look at few of his past builds I stress enough on the hours that Jared puts into one of his bikes.) Seeing the end result of one of his barn finds is impressive as it is mind boggling. I thought a visit to Holiday Customs might better explain how the one man does it all, but I’m left more puzzled than ever.

(Image credit: June Bhongjan)

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: Simple and raw (motorcycles).

Inspiration: The past.

Favorite Element: My old can collection.

Biggest Challenge: Not holding on to everything.

What Friends Say: There’s a lot to look at.

Biggest Embarrassment: The bathroom, usually.

Proudest DIY: The motorcycle that I built for myself.

Biggest Indulgence: Buying more motorcycles

Best Advice: Stay organized.

Dream Sources: Old timer’s garage sales. They usually have the best tools.

(Image credit: June Bhongjan)

Resources of Note:

  • The bike on the wall is the first custom bike that I built 6 years ago before I started Holiday. It was a Schwinn bicycle — I welded in a Honda motor and made a gas tank out of sheet metal. It goes about 40 mph too fast.
  • All the art on the wall was given to me by friends helping decorate the shop. The board track racer is a favorite of mine.
  • My friend Spencer gave me the old cinema letters to make the “Holiday” sign.
  • All the benches and tables were made by me — they’re a very simple metal frame with clear coat over it and stained plywood.
  • The wall of side covers started when we had a used motorcycle parts shop next door. They would bring over a cover that was broken and that they couldn’t sell, and we started hanging them until we had a wall full.
  • In the summer, the shop gets a lot of visitors. We usually BBQ and take some of the smaller bikes out front for some wheelies and whatnot. It’s like a bar/restaurant with toys to play with.
(Image credit: Oli Gangon)

Thanks, Jared!

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