The Barn: Studio Dreaming and Fun Finds

This is a Google satellite shot of our house and barn as it sits at the back of our little one acre ranchette (we have a nice new roof since the satellite passed over.) I’m writing from garage studio as shown in the image, but the commitment has been made to move my studio into the barn to expand into workshops and much more crafting space. Can you see why I’m out of my mind with excitement?! The barn, aka: man-cave, boat hangar, sports equipment locker room, family storage unit, rope swing gymnasium, is about 20 years old and in fantastic structural shape. There’s even a shop in the back with sink and johnny, which is under the loft. We started to make a small dent in cleaning out the barn last weekend, or at least Jeff did. He went through boxes and storage up on the loft at the back of the barn and brought down long lost luggage (forground above) and boxes of other long forgotten things. He found a stash of printed pieces from back in the day when I had my own design firm, Holden & Company, in downtown Santa Rosa. Each year in partnership with a printer/friend from Sacramento we did a self-promotion Christmas mailer that we sent to our clients and vendors. I designed the pieces and her company printed them with my logo on half and her’s on the others, then we’d split the cost of materials. Three of the years were gift wrap & gift tag kits, but in 1995 I designed little match-book style pocket calendars. (Keep in mind there was very limited personal technology then and most people didn’t carry their calendars in their cell phones. I think that was the year I first got a cell phone!)

I was going to toss these remaining pieces in the recycle bin until it dawned on me that the covers were salvageable and could be repurposed into hang tags.

Who knows what else is packed away in that barn! Stay tuned, I’ll be sharing more finds and progress as we slowly make the studio transition.

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27 Responses to The Barn: Studio Dreaming and Fun Finds

  1. #1 - elaine says:

    wonderful! What a great space. I’m a graphic designer too. Fun fun.

  2. #2 - wendy baker says:

    only you… could repurpose old things you made and create an equally wonderful result.
    i can’t wait to see what else you unearth and share while making your magic wonderland studio. it is very tantalizing.
    xo.w

  3. #3 - Julie Conyers says:

    Can’t wait to see more finds, how fun going through old boxes. Your studio will be amazing.

  4. #4 - Kami says:

    I can’t even imagine how excited you must be! I’m quickly busting out of my home studio. Love seeing your progress updates. :)

  5. #5 - Joyce says:

    Such great ideas! :)

  6. #6 - Mary Ann Potter says:

    Nifty! Studio plans, cleaning out a barn, re-purposing stuff — looks like fun! My studio is one of the small bedrooms, but it’s just perfect. The windows overlook one of the meadows. We live on a farm, and there are some abandoned farms in this area. I would dearly love to search them out. Instead I take photos of them and enjoy them from afar. Have a great time planning your new artistic digs. I know you’ll keep us posted on its progress! I hope you come visit me on my website for a little virtual visit to Windy Hollow Farm!

  7. #7 - Elise says:

    WELL, of COURSE repurposing is on deck for these stunning gems! How I love to see your imaculate design work looking as current as ever – GOSH! {You are AMAZING!} I am SO delighted for your studio project, proposed move, extravaganza! What a GLORIOUS journey it will be! Yee Haw!

  8. #8 - maggie raguse says:

    ditto what elise just said. those covers will be perfect, adorable hangtags. and I want some!
    can’t wait to see what’s going to develop in the barn space. it’s HUGE! and just waiting to be filled with your creativeness. i seriously want to come down and take some wonderful workshops that you’re sure to dream up.
    -maggie

  9. #9 - Anna says:

    how exciting. I look forward to the day that I have a studio instead of a corner. I am thankful for the people living in the rooms at the moment and know that when I do eventually have a studio- the house will be quiet….. one step at a time.

  10. #10 - Claire says:

    What a wonderful space! Can’t wait to see what you turn it into!

  11. #11 - Dorothy says:

    I love taking a peek into other people’s stuff, can’t wait to see more.

  12. #12 - kate blue says:

    pretty cool! and so love those chairs :)

  13. #13 - Rachel Garza says:

    How exciting!! And what a great space! There will be no limits to what you can achieve once you’re in a space that can accommodate anything you dream up!

  14. #14 - foo says:

    Cathe, You continue to amaze me. I can just picture the wonder that will be your future studio-barn.

  15. How ironic Cathe! I’m in the middle of my studio move too – but until now, I wasn’t brave enough to share my story – my studio is embarrassingly messy…no…way worse than messy…it looks like a shot from Oprah’s hoarding show, but you’ve inspired me to share my journey! It alway gets worse before it gets better – right? Thanks & Merry Christmas – all the best with the new space! xo from over the hill in Napa… Lisa

  16. #16 - Jane S says:

    Hi Cathe,

    I think these would also make quite mini scrapbooks. I love the colors and the white design on the cover. It’s so now. I also think that the months could be used individually on a scrapbook layout. Can you tell I’m a big scrapbooker. Yay. Can’t wait to see your studio when you get done. I wish I lived closer so I could attend your workshop. I bet they will be amazing.

  17. #17 - Barbara Frazier says:

    Oh No … don’t toss. Would be great for backgrounds in mixed media.

  18. #18 - Tracy Wright says:

    Yes progress!!!!! I’m counting the days until you offer your workshops.

  19. #19 - berta says:

    What fun! A whole new craft space! Love those red chairs too! And I think tags would be a great re-use of the calendars!

  20. #20 - Sharon Bennett says:

    OH MY!! You lucky girl to have family that supports your creative career path. Can’t wait to see this beautiful new studio emerge! Thanx for sharing.

  21. #21 - Tracy says:

    This spring, after returning from some time in the (hopefully) sunny south, I plan to move my studio area from a dark corner in our basement to a sunny upstairs bedroom. I have constant “studio arrangement” thoughts swimming through my head – I’m so excited by the prospect – so I can just imagine your excitement as well. Happy planning!

  22. #22 - Kat Skull says:

    I barely can fit all my craft things in my storage boxes in my room! I don’t know what I would do if I had all that barn space – probably buy more stuff!

    Kat

  23. #23 - Monnah says:

    Happy to hear about your new studio!!!

  24. #24 - eileen hull says:

    Oh I can’t WAIT to see how you fix up your barn. We have one too but it’s 100 years old and not insulated so not feasible to redo as a studio. I do have a craft sale out there every November though. Love your calendars and know you will come up with some cool re-dos for them! Merry Christmas Cathe!

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  27. #25 - Linda McBurney says:

    Hi I’m a volunteer at our hospital and we have a cookie walk in the hospital lobby each December to make money for the hospital. I mentioned that a booklet of cookie recipes would be a neat thing to sell along with the cookies. Back in December 2011 you found boxes of pocket size calendars/gift-tags. What exact size are these? Are the covers just thicker paper with your printing on them? We have to find an inexpensive way to make these yet something that looks nice. I guess I’m looking for some free advice from you or picking your brain in some way . As they have handed this job to me , I have no knowledge how to even begin.I would appreciate any ideas that you may have to help me. I found your website by accident and found it interesting. thanks so much linda