2020 and 2021 seem like they should be combined into one year. During this time period, all businesses, small ones in particular, have certainly done their fair share of pivoting. Learning new ways of doing things, investing large amounts of time and energy into these new ways and blowing through a lot of brain cells trying to figure it all out. We are no different here and it has taken all of the above and a couple of dedicated friends and team members to bring us through to the other side of the business effects of Covid. For this, I am eternally grateful.
I found this SALE sign at a flea market ten years ago while picking for the first round of goodies to go in the barn. I thought it was a brilliant idea to hang it from our Willowbrook Farm sign when we were open… until we received many questions concerning the sale of the property, which really wasn’t what we were intending on selling! Ha ha!
Nearly ten years ago this year, after a pretty intensive renovation of our stone, once used as a dairy bank barn, I literally hung out a Sale sign and invited everyone we knew to come to our first Life’s Patina Barn Sale. It was a dream inspired by the walls and contents of the aforementioned bank barn, whose beautiful solid stone walls are the fist thing you see when you enter our farm. The continuation of this dream after such a seriously intense year like no other is a gift and one that we have not taken lightly here. As this year progressed, we were in the middle of an expansion plan for our little grass roots business. We were neck deep in our renovation over in Historic Yellow Springs Village at the Jenny Lind House so that we could have the most perfect home to open up another dream project… our Mercantile and Cafe. I had hired my second full time team member to assist with the Operations of all things Life’s Patina and as our artist/baker for the Cafe. We had also been in the middle of designing and creating a new, more interactive website where our readers and site visitors could more easily find information about our business, services and locations.
We were growing… while we were experiencing setbacks, but we dug our heels in a little deeper, worked a little harder and slept a little less, and as we re-emerge from this angst-filled year…we are continuing on our path of growth and we are so excited to share with you our newly finished website!
One of the main design features that I was set on trying to incorporate into the new site was a series of hand drawn maps – maps which not only conveyed the typical things that a map does, but whose design and artwork spoke to the feel of both of Life’s Patina’s properties. Everything we do here at LP is with the intent to make the visitor feel something, even if our guest is visiting virtually so these visual representations of our unique properties were important! At this time, in walked Suzy, our Operations manager/artist/cafe baker, and out came the perfectly created, hand drawn map of both Willowbrook Farm…
And The Village of Historic Yellow Springs.
That is not to say that there were not many many edits, for I was very particular in what I was envisioning in my head but could not create myself… however, Suzy really brought my vision to life in the final product!
Along with our hand-drawn property maps, we added some additional visuals that really convey the aesthetic of all that you will encounter upon a visit to Life’s Patina…
As you peruse our new website, you’ll also find that we made a lot of changes with our customers in mind, including:
- Formatted the website in a way that makes for easier navigation!
- Created a homepage, where you can view general information on who we are, what we do and what services we offer at LP, as well as quick links to pages with further detail on our main offerings – Barn Sales, Historic Farm Venue and Mercantile & Cafe
- Added dedicated pages for each of our locations that you can navigate to using the bar on the top left – Barn & Garden at Willowbrook Farm and Mercantile & Cafe at Yellow Springs
- Note, our Mercantile & Cafe at Yellow Springs page will be updated over the coming weeks as we get closer to opening!
- Built out Barn & Garden at Willowbrook Farm offerings page, which you can get to by clicking on Barn & Garden at Willowbrook Farm and using the navigation bar at the top of the page or by scrolling toward the bottom of the page to view the clickable blue menu that’s below
- Included more detailed event and venue rental info as well as Barn Sale & upcoming events info
- Added an easy-to-use inquiry box for inquiring about our services
- Commissioned art and maps for the purpose of realistically portraying our locations and differentiating them
- Added a “Shop” button to the top right to provide easier access to our online shop
Drawings of our locations that you’ll see if you navigate from the homepage to “Locations”
Clickable service menu for Barn & Garden at Willowbrook Farm that you can view by navigating to “Barn & Garden at Willowbrook Farm” at the top left and scrolling down
Streamlined inquiry form to inquire about working with us
We hope that you enjoy this new version! For those of you who walked in the barn doors those ten years ago and who still continue to do so, we thank you. For those who just walked in for the first time during our Pop Up Sale day earlier this week or any time in between, we thank you. It is your support, your trust in us to provide an experience that lifts you up when you enter, whether you purchase something or not, that enables us to continue to pour what we love into our little business… our little business that is growing. Our growth has been slow and consistent and has enabled us to truly dig in and explore the things that we feel passionate about and share them with you, thus creating the core of our business and the mantras that propel us forward.
We hope that you enjoy exploring the new website and if you have any questions or suggestions on how we can better share what we do here at Life’s Patina… please don’t hesitate to reach out!
“We believe strongly in the importance of adaptive reuse of historical buildings and the artistry in the creation of objects of the past and the reinvention of them for the future. We believe in the strength of relationships and celebrating those while investing in the stories of others. We believe in uplifting the everyday and focusing in on the roses in our lives while acknowledging the thorns. We love great food and beverages, music that conveys mood and feeling, fabulous atmospheres, the intrinsic beauty of nature and florals and will strive to continue bringing you all of the above each time you visit us, read our blog or browse our Instagram page.“