For the craft-challenged, good news: A new “fail-proof” studio is in New Braunfels, and leads even the most art-inept through the process of creating their own beautiful wooden decorations. 

The Rustic Brush, which opened in mid-December in the MarketPlace, is a “social crafting experience” where everyone gets to create and customize his or her own project. It’s also BYOB — bring your own booze. 

Over the course of a three-hour session, crafters are led through the process of sanding, staining and painting their own boards or wooden decorations — occasionally also getting to even use power tools. 

Co-owners and mother-and-daughter duo Cathy Johns and Alyssa Yarrington, said when they heard of The Rustic Brush franchise in Houston, they just knew they wanted open their own store in New Braunfels.

“We chose New Braunfels, because we love the area,” Yarrington said. “(My parents) were planning on retiring in Canyon Lake, and … I’ve always wanted to work on getting up here.”

Yarrington lives and works part-time in Pearland, Texas, and spends the other half of her time in New Braunfels helping run the store. 

Johns and her husband live in Canyon Lake, and Johns commutes everyday to the shop.

“So our manager Adrienne (Platt) just kind of holds down the fort when we’re back in Houston,” Yarrington said. “She’s here during the week because our office hours are different.”

What’s unique about The Rustic Brush is everyone can work on different projects and chooses their own online before coming in, Yarrington said.

“Every day is kind of different, that’s the beauty of it because we have so many different projects to choose from that everyday is sort of different,” Platt said.

Crafters first go online to, where they choose a project and then choose a design, Yarrington said.

“Then you look at our calendar of availability and pick what date you want to come, so any type of workshop that says general or open, that’s open to anyone to come,” Yarrington said.

People can also book private parties, Yarrington said. Anything from kids’ birthday parties to team-building hangouts makes for a great private party, she added.

 “It’s all skill levels, all ages,” Johns said. 

“For a birthday party, kids will all do the same design, but everyone adds their own colors, and even if you do the same project it looks completely different,” Yarrington said.

It’s always been a dream for Johns and Yarrington to co-own a business, Yarrington said.

“(My husband) has enjoyed seeing us have our own little dream come true, and just seeing all the hard work,” Yarrington said.

It’s really been a family effort getting the business up and running, Yarrington said. Her husband and dad helped redo the inside of the shop after Johns and Yarrington purchased it for their business, Yarrington said.

“Pretty much the only thing we didn’t do was the floors. So it was a several months process but it was a lot of fun,” Yarrington said.

Even Yarrington’s 4-year-old daughter, Emery, has helped out, Yarrington said. 

“She calls this her art store and she is the big boss. She has a nametag and she asked us the other day, ‘Will you write the boss on it?’” Yarrington said with a laugh. “She could probably run the place.”

So far, the best part has been getting to know the people of New Braunfels, Johns said. 

“We just love the relaxed atmosphere and people,” Johns said. 

Johns said she is looking forward to the store’s official chamber of commerce ribbon cutting on March 28 at 4:30 p.m.

Pricing for projects starts at $38 (with youth projects starting at $25). For more information on the New Braunfels site visit

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(1) comment

David Brown

New Braunfels has an alcohol problem.
Not every business needs alcohol to be a success.
How do customers here drink and then get home?
Oh yeah, they drive.
New Braunfels - we need less alcohol.

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