My Room: Jo's Studio

Chicago, IL

If you love your job, it's incredibly satisfying to share what you do with your child. Jennifer even went so far as to carve out space for her daughter in her workspace so they can create side by side. She shares: I run a letterpress printing and design studio, and my daughter Jo is very often in the studio with me. Effort was made to keep this area looking like it belonged with the rest of the studio while still being a fun work/art/play center.

My husband built the aqua work desks and the blue writing desk was a gift from 'Uncle Paul', owner of the Platen Press Museum here in Illinois. We use many old crates and cheese boxes for storage and display in the studio, and we've found some specifically for Jo's studio to house her toys and projects.

We have also collected vintage items, such as Lincoln Logs and Tinker Toys, as well as child-friendly printing presses and a one-key-at-a-time typewriter. The folding easel is our next rehab project; we found it (and the small red chair) while in Michigan visiting the French Paper Company (our favorite paper supplier).

Jo is a great scavenger and finds bits of paper, fabric, ribbon scraps and packing materials around the studio that then go back to her space to be turned into gifts (though the gingham elephant on the corkboard was too great to give up!). I printed the 'I Taught Myself' broadside as a gift for Jo's teachers at her Montessori preschool. The text is loosely borrowed from one of Maria Montessori's books, and is meant to resemble both the Pink Tower and Broad Stairs that are staple items of the preschool curriculum.

Jo clearly delights in her work and creativity while making 'posters' and 'invitations' like her mother.

Thanks Jennifer! Readers, visit Starshaped Press to learn about (or hire) Jennifer's business and "old-timey press."

(Images: Jennifer Farrell)

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As Apartment Therapy's Family Editor, Carrie covers design and modern homelife with children. A lapsed librarian, she lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two kids and is in contention to break the record for most hours spent at the playground.

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