Create Space, a DIY Sign Studio, Opens in Vadnais Heights

The DIY studio in Vadnais Heights lets you build and decorate personalized signs.
Al and Katie Cooley turned their passion for wooden signs into a fun business.

Wooden décor is on trend right now, as Al and Katie Cooley, owners of Create Space, are well aware. They opened the DIY studio in Vadnais Heights in October—a new venture that perfectly combines their respective interests and hobbies. “I am a teacher and was looking for something else to do, and then this idea came up,” Katie explains. “My husband has always been into woodworking—he built the deck on the side of our house—and I’ve always been on the artsy side, always loved doing arts and crafts.”

Right now, Create Space is focusing on wooden stained specialty signs, and offers group classes taught by skilled instructors who lead you through the process of assembling, staining and painting a wooden sign of your own. Although it’s DIY, there’s no need to BYO anything, as Create Space provides everything you need. “People can come in and assemble the wooden pallets themselves,” says Katie. “I have premade designs they can pick from, and they get to choose the colors and the paints.” She also offers custom designs for an additional $20 fee.

A typical class takes about two hours, making it a great group activity, whether you’re looking to catch up with friends or spend some quality time with the family. “Whether people come on their own or in groups, they can feel like they’re a part of the community and socialize,” Katie says. The open studio, which Katie describes as “fun and bright,” also fits the DIY theme—Katie and Al built the workbenches themselves.

The couple is expanding the business and now building shelves and tables.