Old Junk to New Treasures
Cottage on Main creates repurposed works of art
Writer / Cathy Wendorff
Photographer / Amy Payne
Helping to revitalize downtown Greenwood is a unique home goods retail store, Cottage on Main, where their passion is creating repurposed works of art from unwanted and damaged items.
“I’ve been painting furniture and decorating my whole life, it’s something I’ve always loved,” says retired teacher and owner, Dianna Thompson Massie.
In conjunction with Mike Twarogal, her shop manager and son-in-law, Dianna has developed a flourishing family furniture restoration business.
Using their self-taught skills and passion for handcrafted projects, the Do-It-Yourself Duo of Dianna and Mike teamed up years ago in Mike’s garage to inspire each other to design and construct one-of-a-kind keepsakes. They began by scouring auctions and garage sales to find salvageable materials, but now people bring in their things to sell, donate or refurbish. Mike worked as a regional retail manager for 15 years and is happy to tell customers, “I’m the DIY person, I left my job so I can do it for you.”
Dianna, with the help of her children, opened her first store in Southport and later moved her business in 2015 to the Yellow House Gallery in the Edinburgh Outlet. In May 2016, the family began transforming the space previously known as, Jim’s New to You, into Cottage on Main, which is a showroom with a trendy twist on traditional and modern Farmhouse styles in a cozy customized setting. What makes their new location special is the leased barn space that gives Mike a functional workshop to house his many projects.
Through the years, Dianna has learned, “What is old is new, it just has to go around, it has to make that circle, the circle of life. It doesn’t just apply to people, it applies to items and furnishings.”
She enjoys hearing the stories behind the items, whether someone is downsizing or they just don’t know what to do with their relatives’ things. Dianna loves old cracked, dented and mismatched items that can be converted into usable treasures.
Both Dianna and Mike agreed that they want people to have unique items in their homes and, most importantly, things that they love. They pointed out that some of their best sellers are lamps with refreshed shades, half-painted and half-stained dining room sets or painted dressers and desks that are used for a variety of things from TV stands to credenzas and buffets.
Emily Twarogal, daughter to Dianna and wife to Mike, helps the business with her savvy social media skills and also by painting inspirational word signs from reclaimed wood.
Although most of their sales are from customers at the store, they do offer online sales and ship items out-of-state. Priding themselves on knowing what price the community will accept, they keep their prices reasonable. Sometimes they invest more time in recreating a new look than they can get out of it, but they are about the preservation of good bones through quality work. With a true appreciation of art, they expanded their base to include some creations from outside artists, such as Pottery by Doug and String Art by Yellow Umbrella Designs.
With Dianna’s motto, “Let’s paint it, don’t give it away, let’s see what we can do with it,” and Mike’s “Don’t throw it away, I’ll use it somehow,” this dynamic duo has fun turning old unloved objects into lovable products for anyone’s home.