A Quick Introduction to Star Cottage Studio!

A Quick Introduction to Star Cottage Studio!

Hello Everyone!

So many of you know about us here at Allegory Gallery, and you may have heard us talk about Star Cottage Studio, but don't have much of an idea of what that exactly is! So, we wanted to take a few moments to fill you in a bit! 

In 2021, we at Allegory Gallery purchased a building that started its life over a century ago as a school house in Bolivar, PA (USA). The entire building was then moved to its current location, added onto and improved, and used for many different small businesses. Most recently, it was an antiques and gift shop called The Schocalog Shoppe. Check out the little brochure they had below!

Then, it sat empty for over 10 years as the previous owners closed their shop and grew older—it became difficult for them to keep it up. We fell in love with the building at first sight, and while it was rough, we could see so much potential. 

We had many dreams about this building. At first, we were going to add on an extension which would allow us to section off part of the building into its own AirBnB so that we could house artists and other makers who came to stay with us. But, due to some difficulties, we had to forget that plan (for now), and change course. 

The main use of this lovely building was always meant to be our jewelry-making studio. And, that part has come true. This is where we make all of our enameled pieces, we teach private classes, we film our Work with Us series for YouTube, and all of Andrew's latest metalwork pieces (seen in various shows and museums around the country) have come out of. We've worked hard to outfit it with the tools and materials needed to grow our business in various ways. We've even custom-built the majority of our work benches!

We've done a lot in the way of upgrades and refurbishments, too. We've done tons and tons of painting. We've had the electrical system overhauled to a commercial system.

We've added lights (inside and out), baseboard heaters, and lots of outlets (you can never have enough outlets!).

We've had the floors redone by William's brother's flooring business, Tommy D's Hardwood Floors.

We've removed the old propane stove and installed a pellet stove for more efficient heating with the help of William's mom and dad.

We've installed our own dual split system, so that we can keep it cool in the summer and help the pellet stove out in the winter. 

And that doesn't even include all the things we've done on the outside! We have an acre of land with it, much of which is wooded. So, we've cleared out a lot of brush from the woods, worked on the flower beds, installed a rain-collection barrel, plated fruit trees, and so much more. 

We've also been able to more Allegory Gallery's shipping department there, so that we can increase the size of our store floor for product and teaching classes in-store (still a work in progress at the time of writing). We have our filming set up for Facebook and YouTube lives now at Star Cottage Studio and our bead room where we make kits, bead collections, and more there.

The dream of having a retail space there has been put on the back burner, but, for now, this setup works the best for us at the moment anyway. 

There's still a lot to do. There's an entire second floor that we don't do much with yet. We still want to install water and bathroom facilities—these things have been made difficult due to us being told one thing when we bought the property and another after we purchased it. But, we haven't given up! We want to redo the siding on the outside, as some of it is rough, but it's holding up well, still, and we'll do this as time and money allow. We also want to put a floating deck on the rooftop adjoining an upstairs door to the outside, so there's a lovely place to sit, contemplate, and work outside.

Around back, we plan to add a patio with a forge so that we can do more blacksmithing. And, at some point, we'd also love to create a pottery studio and move some of our supplies and tools for that from our basement to the cottage. 

All in all, we've completed a lot at Star Cottage Studio, and yet, we still have bigger dreams for it! We're considering opening it up to more private classes and group classes this year, as well as possibly having open studio times for those in the area who enjoy metalwork, but don't have their own tools and equipment. All of this depends on time and things like how the pandemic continues. 

We know that everyone following us doesn't always design jewelry. Some people who follow us just believe in our mission to create opportunities for those who love crafting and making things. Our mission has always been "to promote artisan craftspeople, inspire the community to explore their creativity, and act as a focal point for classes and artistic education in the area". Star Cottage Studio will play a huge rule in that in the future—even more than it does already. If you're one of those people, we hope that you'll consider joining our Patreon to help support our efforts at Star Cottage Studio. You can get more information by clicking here.

We thank you for taking a look and for all of your support! We can always do more together than alone, and we're so thankful and grateful that we have our supporters to help us carry on with our mission!

Your friends,

William & Andrew

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I drove by recently and was wondering how your progress was going along. It’s fun to read about all your hopes and dreams and what has been accomplished thus far.

Judy Ridgway

How exciting! It appears you’re making great progress. I love the floors, and can’t wait to see what you do next. Best of Luck Guys! ❤️

Ellen Stokes

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