Pages

Search This Blog

February 12, 2018

The School House | Our New Project & Home for Everyday Occasions


If you've been following me on Instagram over the last week, then you've been getting sneak peeks into our latest adventure. We bought an old School House!  It has been in the works since last Fall, but we weren't sure it would actually happen until it actually happened, so I kept it under wraps until the papers were signed.  But now, we are the proud owners of a one room rural school house in my hometown, Lexington, Missouri.

This is one of those places that I've driven by hundreds of times and dreamed about what I could do with it - and as I discovered this weekend at home, many other locals have done the same thing!  When it came on the market in the Fall, I went on a long walk and thought of 100 ideas (from b&b to bakery!), before I had the "ah-ha" moment.  After it came to me, my mind went running and there was no turning back - I had decided to move my entire store operations to The School House.

All of the product processing, packaging and shipping will happen from here.  For the past four years, the fulfillment has happened at a warehouse, where I am one of their clients.  They have been great for helping me grow to this point, but I have such an itch to, of course, "do it myself."  Now, I will set up my own staff to custom package my products in this very charming building.  I have so many plans about expanding our offerings and ability to make every single order more special.  I am so excited, I can hardly believe it.  How fun is it that all of your orders will be coming straight from this little building in the country?!


This is the school house at dusk last weekend, when everything had a glaze of ice on it.


It sits on almost two acres of land off of a country road.  I plan to have a big garden and an orchard... at some point.


It was built in 1914, and served as a rural school until 1956 when all of the local rural schools were consolidated.  For about 40 years, it sat empty.  In the 90's the original owners of the farm on which it sits, renovated it to be a bed and breakfast.  It has been empty for sometime now, waiting to be brought to life again.


The family did an excellent job renovating it and bringing it up to modern standards, all while being respectful of its simple, utilitarian style.  The chalkboard and most of the trim is original to the school.  


The "students" came back to the school after the renovation for a reunion and signed their names on the chalkboards.  How amazing is that?  They are still there, and will remain, as a nod to the past.


Here are some of the students that attended school here.  I love to look at each one of their faces.  They likely walked to school, or rode a horse.  Many of the family names are still the same families that own the surrounding farmland to this day.


The band!


The main feature of the room is the entire wall of windows.  They are glorious and extend almost all of the way to the top of the 12 food ceilings. 


The room is really one big open blank space - exactly what I need it to be.



Off of the one room, is a kitchen that was the original Library.  The cupboard to the right was the original bookcase.



The first thing I did was replace the appliances.  You know I have to have a functioning kitchen!  I plan to do a little DIY update by painting the cabinetry, and replacing the pulls, faucet and hood.  


I want to be respectful of the history here, but I also want to steward it into the future and make it useful and give it life again.  What is better than giving something old a new use and purpose?

I've been collecting inspiration photos since the fall, and just had a gut feeling of how I wanted it to look.  I love utilitarian spaces and plan to use Shaker inspired paint colors, furniture and fixtures to make it feel like it should.  I don't want to dramatically change The School House, but I want it to feel very country, but fresh and bright.  The trim will all be painted this creamy beige (Ben Moore Marble Canyon).  All of the walls will stay their original creamy white.  The moving part of the windows will stay dark stained, as well as the doors.  


When I came across these inspiration photos, they were exactly what I had envisioned.  A utilitarian, country workshop.  It feels clean and fresh, muted and subtle.  It is seasonless - I can see it with holiday greens and berries, daffodils in spring and big bunches of oak leaves in the fall.


I love the cream on cream woodwork and walls in my home, but I am so drawn to this more country look.  I'm excited to have a place to use it!


I will not be getting new cabinets or countertops, but this is what I would do if I was : )


I LOVE thinking about the functioning plans for the packaging and shipping.  I really hope to bring our order fulfillment out of the normal "box" and do some fun and creative things.


I would like to paint the floor in the foyer with a diamond pattern - so charming.


We spent the weekend there, getting everything ready to paint.  Here, my assistant painted all of the color samples on boards.


I had six different shades of beige and grey to find the perfect one that complimented the light and the walls.




I thought this Crisp Khaki was the winner, but it dried to a sort of bleh tone.


We took the doors off so they would not be painted - aren't they beautiful?


Kitchen to the left, foyer to the right.  We are doing a beadboard and peg treatment in the foyer.


This is the final paint color for the trim - Ben Moore Marble Canyon.  It was the perfect creamy, warm beige that wasn't too dull, wasn't too green, and wasn't too pink.  Paint can be so funny.  Here's hoping I picked the right one - it is being applied as I type.


I'm excited to take you along on this journey!

Follow along on Instram for the behind the scenes progress.

15 comments:

  1. Amazing!!! I can't wait to see more!

    ReplyDelete
  2. How exciting, Jenny! I have followed along with your insta stories and was wondering about this space. I can't wait to see how it turns out!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Congratulations! It will be fun knowing my orders come from such a delightful place.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Jenny, this looks amazing! I'm so excited for you. I'm a long time follower and a teacher (so I especially appreciate the schoolhouse features!). I can't wait to see what this space becomes for you. It is so lovely! Congrats and best wishes. I look forward to watching your story continue to blossom. -Megan M

    ReplyDelete
  5. Jenny--How sweet!! My Husband and his 3 siblings attended a one room school house in Pennsylvania during the 1950's. I have heard so many lovely stories about his experiences in that room!! He especially remembers, with great admiration,his teacher for those 6 years. Mrs. Alice Wall taught, guided and shepherded the children under her care with loving expectations. My husband was her first college graduate! He owes so much of his early education to her.
    So glad you will now enjoy a similar property that holds many sweet memories. Thank you for sharing this new project. I'll look forward to many pictures of the school house as it becomes you new work space.
    Happy memory making!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Oh my word! I knew I loved your style. I have followed your blog for a long time. As a former school teacher I am completely smitten with this building. I love your plans for it. I can't wait to follow along and know that the many things I order from you will come from such a delightful place of history. How exciting!
    I never send you reviews, but I am sincerely in love with every item I have purchased from you. They are so classic. My current pillows on my couch are amazing. I ordered the pink table cloth and it is so pretty. I needed something light and airy for baby showers and such.
    Anyway, best of luck..can't wait to follow along.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Congratulations! What an exciting adventure.

    ReplyDelete
  8. That story is amazing! Looking forward to following along as you transform this wonderful treasure.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Wow!!! Much luck and success....I am sure it will be lovely. I am looking forward to watching you in this journey.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Very exciting Jenny! I'm looking forward to following along as it all comes together. Best of luck for much success in your new (old) schoolhouse!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Wow, Jenny!! What a fun project! It already looks so sweet, and I can't wait to see what y'all do with it!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Anonymous10:22 PM

    I'm so envious! I've always wanted a schoolhouse-for something! Good luck, and I know it will be perfect when you've finished. Debby

    ReplyDelete
  13. OMG!! Love this blog post. This is ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL! If only the walls could talk! Have FUN & I can’t wait to see it!

    ReplyDelete
  14. This is exciting.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Congratulations Jenny sounds like a wonderful adventure!

    ReplyDelete

Copyright @ Jenny Steffens Hobick. Blog Design by KotrynaBassDesign