Sandusky Salvage and Design
Uncover, clean, restore...and grow a business
What do you think of when someone says they’re a maker?  Maybe you think of a hard worker? A creator? Someone who uses their hands to design, build, craft? The very talented husband and wife duo of Sandusky Salvage and Design, Ben and Heather Byington are that and much more. To Ben, “being a maker means an opportunity to build the way you want to build - building with heart" which is exactly what he and Heather do when they uncover and restore their pieces together.  They make sure there is love in everything they do.    
Fast Facts
  • 1850 - 1950, the centuries showcased on the walls of The Marketplace at Cooke with pictures, paintings, images and actual artifacts designed by the Byingtons
  • Early 1900's reclaimed benches from the Cedar Point midway make up portions of the Berardi's bar design
  • 70 out of the top 100 human food crops, supplying about 90% of the world’s nutrition, are pollinated by bees - a fact the Byingtons are paying homage to in their next big project, a remodeled AirBnB
Ben, an entrepreneur at heart, started in owning and operating Benny B’s Barbershop, which he still works at today. But when he’s not at the barbershop, you can find him tearing down an old barn or building and restoring his findings through Sandusky Salvage & Design.  Heather, a teacher, says teaching is her #1 passion and she could never give that up; but Sandusky Salvage & Design has been an outlet for her other loves, art and design.

Ben and Heather own and operate Sandusky Salvage and Design, and their talents are continuing to grow through new ventures, Patina Creek and restored rental homes on AirBnB.  It's been said that Heather is Sandusky Salvage and Design's secret weapon. With her sense of interior design and Ben's creativity, they work together to uncover and restore beautiful windows, doors, furniture and more.

The duo also loves to involve their children in projects. “We’re a green family”, says Heather. They teach their children to re-use, re-purpose and give things new life. So much is thrown away, Heather adds, our landfills are filling up. She wants to make sure her family is part of the solution when it comes to the environment.
Ben founded Sandusky Salvage and Design in 2014. The couples' combined entrepreneurial spirit and creativity have lead to their explosive growth and new developments. One of Ben's first jobs was restoring Berardi’s bar, the well known, family-owned Sandusky restaurant, using salvaged material.  The company's next big growth spurt came when he and Heather opened Patina Creek. Located on West Monroe in Sandusky and former home to Toft Dairy, this is where they now house their beautiful upcycled and refurbished work.  They’ve completely restored the inside and the area around the building. The showroom inside displays many of their restored pieces including stunning, old barn doors, antique wood chests, end tables, work tables and beautiful wood furniture. Because of their busy schedule, the showroom is shown by appointment only.  

Customers and the Byingtons hate to see beauty wasted, and Patina Creek has quickly become not only a showroom, but also a unique photography and vintage wedding venue. With a capacity up to 49 guests, any small event is welcomed. From a wedding, reception, or both! To reunions, banquets and more. You can also rent Patina Creek for pictures. The beautiful, rustic background is great for taking family or wedding pictures.

With one building restored, the Byingtons were ready for another restoration venture and decided to craft an AirBnB - an 1856 limestone home converted into a rustic, elegant stay. Heather said they rehabbed the home and gave it their touch which is the charming rustic home you see today. Everything you see inside was designed by Sandusky Salvage and Design, with a one of a kind look from the salvaged beams to the exposed stone walls, the history and charm are undeniable. Booked through February, this downtown Sandusky home is the perfect home away from home.
Even if you've never heard of Sandusky Salvage and Design, you've probably seen their work and didn't even realize it. One of their recent projects was the hallway at The Marketplace at Cooke building. From the restored seats you see in front of the State Theatre mural to pictures on the wall, they were involved with designing the entire hallway. Other projects include work at Barra, OH Taco, Noble Axes, and Noble Pins (the new bowling alley inside The Marketplace) among countless other projects. When asked what her favorite project has been so far Heather replied, "My favorite project has been our Airbnb and the dining room at Patina. We were able to design these from the beginning with all our ideas and no limitations because these are our buildings."
Heather says this is just the beginning for them. “We have some fascinating visions for our future and realize this is a journey. It won’t happen overnight but that’s the beauty of our story.” Their business is unique in the way that they are not structured with repetitive day-to-day tasks. Every day is different when you are restoring. “We never know what treasure we will salvage and sometimes those pieces trigger a new idea!” The sky is the limit when it comes to the Byington’s. As Heather says, stay tuned... 
Two are on the immediate horizon. First, another AirBnB. This one will have architectural pieces from the city incorporated and a storefront called “Bees and Trees.” “We believe in saving the bees so this is a way we are trying to help.”  Possible ideas down the road include a resort and day spa and a kitchen for parties. With the Byington’s special touch, these will undoubtedly be something to look out for.   
The Byington's and their projects were recently featured in a national "Making It with Menards" commercial - check it out!
Did You Know?
Entrepreneurs, especially those growing at a fast pace like Ben and Heather, face many important decisions - how to incorporate all your ventures? How to manage cash flow when a big project is secured? How to finance the build out of a new space, storefront, or showroom? These are the kinds of questions an impartial third party such as RISE (Regional Incubator for Sustainability and Entrepreneurship) can help address. This can be especially important when two family members are running a business together. Our office has monthly business advising sessions available free-of-charge to help you address questions like this. Contact us to learn more.
Stay Tuned for Day 8: EHOVE Career Center
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The 12 Days of Development email series recognizes and celebrates another year of progress in Erie County, Ohio. Throughout the weeks of December, you will receive email spotlights on a company investing, improving and innovating in our community. We can't capture it all, so let us know a neighbor we missed or what activities you've got planned to make the 2020 list! #ErieCounty12Days