Neighbors Julie Shelby and Maureen Anders joined forces to create Board & Brush Creative Studio, a one-stop shop for wall-worthy home decor.
Forget paint and canvas, it’s time to trade up for power tools and wood. Board and Brush Creative Studio is a workshop for constructing unique, vintage-inspired wood decor projects from scratch. There are now two Milwaukee-area locations: Hartland (110 W. Capitol Drive) and Elm Grove (13475 Watertown Plank Rd.) that aim to offer a one-stop shop for creating unique and beautiful home decor that is wall worthy. Wall worthy is the operative term here. How many times have you been to a wine and painting party only to end up throwing away your unsightly art?
Owners Julie Shelby and Maureen Anders will ensure your creations are something you’d be proud to pin on Pinterest and hang in your home. Instructors guide you through the creative process from raw materials to final product. When you arrive, all the materials are portioned out and prepped for each guest. It takes 2 to 3 hours to complete a project, depending on how social the group is — and how much they drink.
Shelby and Anders are both transplants to Milwaukee, and wound up as next door neighbors. They met in the backyard and discovered a shared passion for creating decor and DIY projects, and began making signs together to decorate their homes. Their friends began to take notice, so they hosted a party in Shelby’s basement. Later, they began charging for classes in their basement and, though Shelby admits they never intended to start a business, the two finally branched out to the studio space they now occupy.
They are a perfect pairing of talent to run a business – finance (Shelby) and graphic design (Anders). Shelby says she and her husband are “weekend warriors” when it comes to rehabbing homes and doing handy work. She is self-taught in a variety of handy skills and has always enjoyed making her own decorative items. Anders co-founded Anders Ruff, an online shop for unique and stylish printable invitations, decor and party accessories, and handles all the original design concepts.
After less than a year in business, Board & Brush is booming. Two other licensed stores just opened and Shelby says they field 5 to 8 inquiries per week about licensing. There are more than 50 projects to choose from in their gallery and they also cater to private parties and custom work. Their most popular designs often come from people’s ideas or a specific need they found in their home. Otherwise, they look for inspiration at flea markets or antique stores, from good quotes and song lyrics.
Think you’re ready to wield power tools and wood? For all Girl About Town readers, use the code BBSUMMER for $5 off your first class ($60) at the Hartland location.