Open Studio!

May 29, 2012

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This month has been a milestone for GreenBridge and The Riverview Company.  After almost 5 years of being in business, we have moved into our new studio space! I wanted to give you a tour of our new space and share its history. Our little barn building was built in the late 18th century. When we first moved to our house, this out-building was nearly falling down the hill to its rear and was 11” out of plumb. It was all potential, but my husband Steven and I loved it at first glance.

It’s been nine years and slow going construction-wise, diversions like our toddler, then a new baby, challenging careers, LEGOS… all were in collusion to the barn not getting finished. For the most part I didn’t think about it and have made a small office next to the kids’ bedrooms work. Steven (my husband and business partner) pressed on, slow but steady. Within our first week in the house, he raised the rear of the barn and installed new foundation piers. As time went on, he built out the interior of the first floor for his cabinetry shop and repaired the clapboards and trim on the exterior.

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Steven in his shop.

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He built an amazingly WIDE stair to the second floor space, with careful detailing that gained us a dry storage shed below the stairs.

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They’re also great for hanging out

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Under construction

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Steven and friends added the dormers last fall, which make the space comfortable and roomy, with space for a future bathroom and storage.

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The studio!  This view is toward the PowWow River and the little green bridge

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Future window-seat location

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Steven built a beautiful conference table using salvaged lumber from a 17th century Amesbury Point Shore structure, a piece I will always treasure.

I’m thrilled to be in the space and can now testify more strongly than ever to the power of design. This space, so perfect for me and my work, is conducive to happy production, collaboration and creativity.

For more information or to schedule a visit, feel free to contact me at juli@greenbridgearchitects.com

Best wishes for a wonderful summer!

panel-flyerIt should be a great discussion with input from varied professional perspectives.  Looking forward to it!

chicagoalley_1One of my fondest memories of living in Chicago was ‘shopping’ in the alleys.  My quickest walk to the train was down our 3 block alley: on one side were condo buildings and the on the other were single-family homes.  It worked this way – if  you didn’t want something anymore, you left it in the alley, NEXT to the garbage, sometimes with a note, and it was usually gone in a few hours.  Through the years I collected a great variety of treasures.  Among them: lamps, a desk, many many chairs, my now favorite cookbook.  My goal wasn’t to be green, but it really was an efficient (cheap!) and practical system.

Now I use www.freecycle.org.  If you haven’t checked them out, give them a try – it is basically a local list-serve where members post items they want to give away or items they’d like to receive.  It works similarly to shopping in the Chicago alley, but is a bit more civilized.

 In construction, the act of restoring or remodeling a home is a form of reuse and salvage.  Preservation instead of demolition and new construction saves in energy and materials consumption and reduces demolition landfill.  There is a great opportunity in salvaging and reusing materials for remodeling and even new construction projects, if you are aware and know where to look.  I was at a friend’s home the other day who found an incredible farmer’s sink in the basement at an open house, asked about it, and got it for a steal. 

hardwareIn addition to the somewhat familiar architectural salvage companies, who generally offer antique architectural elements (light fixtures, mantels, doors, decorative windows, hardware) there are also deconstruction stores that offer even basic construction items (flooring, plumbing, cabinetry).  Both types of companies also offer an alternative to demolition and waste of unwanted but usable items, either by donation or in some cases buying the item.  See below for some local architectural salvage and deconstruction stores.  Many have searchable websites that make browsing easier.

Architectural Salvage:

Restoration Resources:  1946 Washington Street, Boston, MA 02118     617.542.3033     www.restorationresources.com

Old House Parts:  1 Trackside Drive, Kennebunk, ME 04043     207.985.1999     www.oldhouseparts.com

Architectural Salvage Warehouse:  11 Maple St, Fiver Corners, Essex Junction, VT 05452     802.879.4221     www.architecturalsalvagevt.com

Nor’east Architectural Antiques:  16 Exeter Road, South Hampton, NH 03827     603.394.0006     www.noreast1.com

Vermont Salvage:  Gates Street, White River Junction, VT 05001     802.295.7616     www.vermontsalvage.com

Deconstruction:

ReStore:  250 Albany Street, Springfield, MA 01105     413.788.6900     www.restoreonline.com

farmers-marketNewburyport is getting  a farmer’s market!!!!  Can’t wait for summer?!

From their site www.thenewburyportfarmersmarket.org:

“Beginning in June and held every Sunday, the farmers’ market will take place in the Tannery Parking lot, along Water Street, come rain or shine! When the market opens this Spring, enjoy fresh produce grown by our local farmers and come see what artisans in the community have been creating!

Our mission is to support a viable food system that brings local farmers and the community together where we can enjoy the fruits of the earth and learn from each other. To promote awareness of sustainability practices and how they help preserve and protect the planet.”

Go to www.thenewburyportfarmersmarket.org for more information.  They are kicking it off with a dance party February 20th at the Mission Oak Grill and an info meeting on the 22nd at the Tannery.