Meet the Staff


Reynold Lowe
Founder | President | The Big Cheese

Reynold earned his Bachelors of Fine Arts from Ohio State University and a Masters of Fine Arts from the University of Michigan. His first salvage job was an old house in Ann Arbor, Michigan that was slated for demolition. In 1972, Reynold joined forces with a demolition contractor and began saving countless architectural treasures! Two years later he founded Materials Unlimited. When he isn't running his business Reynold enjoys working on his small farm, attending concerts, visiting art museums, and creating 1/12th scale miniatures.


Scotty James
General Manager

Our veteran employee, Scotty has worked here at Materials Unlimited for 20 years. Growing up in Marshall, Michigan, historic architecture is in his blood. Scotty is now working on his third home renovation. He has lived in various places in Michigan, and now settled here in Ypsilanti, Michigan. Scotty has been a board member of the Ypsilanti Downtown Development Authority and is also involved with the Ypsilanti Historic Home Tour committee.


Bill Weber
Lighting Restoration Specialist

Bill a.k.a. Kerosene Bill has been a fixture at Materials Unlimited for 15+ years. Drawing on his expertise in welding, the hardware business, and the world of retail and wholesale floral, he spends his days in our shop tediously restoring our antique treasures! But the tinkering doesn't stop when he leaves for the day. At home Bill enjoys working on tractors, hit-and-miss engines, his model railroad, and one-of-a-kind steampunk lighting.


James Wilson
Director of Marketing & Advertising

James comes to Materials Unlimited in a roundabout way. After a return to college to complete a Bachelors of Fine Arts degree in Studio Art and Art History, James started working for us as a freelance graphic designer. Proving his knowledge in architectural antiques, James became a full-time member of our sales staff. In 2009 he took over a Director of Marketing & Advertising. Always willing to assist any staff member or customer, James enjoys the many hats he wears. But you will probably never see him wearing a real hat because for's a hair thing!


Hannah Manning
Shipping Coordinator | Sales Associate | Wizardess

Hannah is our resident local. Having grown up in Ann Arbor, Michigan and now calling Ypsilanti home, she specializes in servicing our local, national, and international clientele. She comes to Materials Unlimited with 20 years experience in wholesale and retail customer service and shipping. When she is not working with our customers, Hannah enjoys hunting for antiques, taking in a good movie, and hanging out with her dog Kendy.


Michael Newberry
Architectural Preservation & Design Consultant

Michael comes to us with a passion for all things "history." What started as collecting the small stuff quickly evolved into larger, more expensive items. Through his collecting he learned how to care for, preserve, and restore all types of things. Michael did a short stint at the United States Military Academy, West Point, where he studied Military History before transferring to the University of Michigan where he received a Bachelors of the Arts in Education. He then received his Masters of Science in Historic Preservation from Eastern Michigan University. During his studies he purchased his first historic home and the rest is history!

horseandgretchen.png Gretchen Sawatzki
Social Media Specialist

Gretchen holds a Bachelors of the Arts in History and a Masters of Science in Historic Preservation. A true lover of all things "old," Gretchen comes to us with 7+ years experience in the museum world. Always looking for an opportunity to share her knowledge, she has made it her personal mission to make architecture and design fun and accessible to all. When she isn't at Materials Unlimited, she handles art objects at a local museum. When work is done, she enjoys adventuring in Detroit, eating unusual foods, and touring the nation's historic sites.