Sawdust Savvy, located in Stillwater, is one of the most promising DIY studios in the metro. To prove it, they offer a number of workshops where participants can complete 22 different projects—including wood signs, decorative boxes, serving/decorative trays, photo ledges, blanket ladders, shelves, and even a custom farmhouse table for your kitchen or dining room. This week, we spoke with co-owner Lindsay Kohn (with Annie Dahl as her artsy, DIY counterpart) on common misconceptions, her favorite projects, and more.
What do you think is the biggest misconception people have about DIY?
Kohn: “That they can’t do it! We hear it over and over again. I think it’s probably our favorite part about the job—seeing someone come in who doesn’t think they can do it, and then watching the transformation in them when they complete it. At Sawdust Savvy, we just take some of the hard parts out of the process—buying, cutting, and sanding the wood ahead of time for participants, cutting their personalized stencil, and having all the tools and supplies ready. We really make it easy.”
Why do you think DIY has become so popular in recent years?
“There is this whole generation of people who have been told that they can do anything they set their mind to—they are driving this DIY movement. Especially women. They are so ready to pick up those power tools because maybe they’ve never been given the chance, or they were too nervous, whatever the reason. And, there is a huge amount of pride in being able to say, ‘I made that!’ Annie and I saw the excitement in the eyes of our first participants and we knew we had to continue to be a part of the movement.”
What do you see the future of it being? Where do you find inspiration for your projects?
“Like everything, DIY will continue to evolve and our business will evolve with it. We will continue to add projects that are new or different—things that people might not be able to make at home on their own—such as our new framed metal sign or our industrial blanket ladder. We are not afraid of change; in fact, we thrive on it. We are always looking for the newest trends so that we can continue to bring these projects to our participants.”
Of your own personal projects, which has been your favorite and why?
“Definitely the farmhouse table. Annie and I made two tables together, one for each of us, and then we looked at each other and knew we had to figure out how to make it into a workshop. The design had to change slightly in order to make it work for the masses. And, it’s such a classic design that can work in the most fancy, formal dining rooms, or in a casual eat-in kitchen space. In my house, my dining room table is the first thing people see when they walk in the front door, and I get to tell every single one of them how I made it with my own two hands. It’s so cool!”
To you, what is the most rewarding aspect of DIY?
“The pride, for sure. Looking at something and knowing you did it. That’s the absolute best.”
Studio name: Sawdust Savvy
What they offer: Mostly DIY wood projects, but some that include sheet metal
Year opened: 2015
Studio address: 324 S. Main St., Suite 7, Stillwater