Musings on Year One

6 Min.

Just over one year ago, on September 2, 2008, Jewett Farms Studio opened its doors in its new downtown Newburyport location. When Mike, Matt, and Elena first started talking about the concept and shape of the Studio many ideas were percolating and much to our delight many of them have been realized over the last year.  It has been, of course, an exceptionally challenging year– we have experienced all the aches and pains of opening a new location coupled with managing the stresses of an extremely weak economy.  Watching the market tumble thousands of points not even a month after opening was not exactly the send-off we had hoped for.  But a lot can change in 12 months.

We have stayed the course resolutely focused on what we do best and on activities that would help us showcase our craft and services.  We imagined a Studio that would draw “live” attention to our work and create a space where we could consult and collaborate with clients, architects, builders, and designers.  In addition we hoped to build a Studio that would have strong local ties. We have proudly and happily joined forces with the Greater Newburyport Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Port City Women, The Flourish Group, Seacoast Green Building Group, and the Green Alliance.  Through our collaboration with the Newburyport Chamber we have been gratified to host our Ribbon Cutting Ceremony, serve as panelist for the Green Expo 2008, sponsor Earth Day 2009 and the Seacoast Business & Green Expo 2009 (as an Earth Day sponsor we welcomed over 200 visitors to the Studio for Earthfest—a weekend of wine tastings and cooking demonstrations), host a Chamber Eye Opener and Member Mixer, participate in the Market Square Downtown Business Directory signage effort, and recently sponsor a holiday season lamppost!  Elena welcomes The Flourish Group for monthly meetings providing a forum for women business leaders to review business case studies together.  Mike has hosted the Green Building Group every other month providing us and our colleagues a venue for dedicated and educational networking for professionals across various industries committed to working “green.”  We have recently partnered with the Green Alliance and are enjoying new professional connections (the Green Card is for sale in the Studio).  Beyond our professional networking associations, we have opened the Studio to various lunch & learn programs-some have been attended by varied audiences and some have been dedicated to the clients of a particular architect.  We have held social and informational gatherings specifically for architects, real estate agents, and designers.  Special outreach has been made to local artists; the Studio hosts new art shows every three or four months.  This has been a great addition to our own space but also provides the artists with a vibrant setting for their work.

Marking our first year anniversary, we kicked off two series.  First, we invited professional colleagues certified to offer Continuing Education Units (CEUs) to offer their programs in the Studio, Bylin, and the Green Coccon have been first up.  Second, and much to our delight, we joined forces with Mary Reilly of The Savory Kitchen to offer a cooking class series dedicated to Julia Child.

Of course, while all this is going on we have been busy designing and building cabinetry for interiors of all shapes, sizes, and styles as well as assisting clients with special flooring needs.  No matter what we are up to, we always welcome visitors—please drop in!