Since we’re living in the age of Pinterest, many of us have wasted some serious time and money attempting to re-create an adorable project that eventually just ends up shoved in a closet somewhere. To the crafty folks out there reading this while sipping from a mug you molded and glazed yourself — good for you. But for the rest of us, there has to be a better way. Fortunately the Charlotte area is home to lots of places that will help you create the Pinterest project of your dreams — while enjoying the adult beverage of your choice. Here are a few of my favorite places to drink-and-DIY.
Dish It Out
You don’t have to make advance reservations at this drop-in, paint-your-own-pottery studio (unless you’re bringing a group of eight or more). Once you’re there, you can buy one of hundreds of items like mugs, spoon rests and vases, and paint it while sipping your favorite drink. Pack a cooler, because the studio is BYOB.
Owner Robin Reinbold says Dish It Out is a flexible, relaxed environment: professionals are available to help you with techniques, or you can do your own thing. Either way, it costs $6 per hour for “studio time,” which includes your paints, glaze and firing. Reinbold said it’ll never cost more than $12, even if you sit for four hours, so no need to rush.
Once you’re done painting, leave your item with the staff who will hand-glaze it and load it into a kiln to be fired. You can pick it up in about a week and start using it right away because finished items are food- and microwave-safe.
Dish It Out: 7828 Rea Road
Crowned Sparrow Co.
This “pop-up” moves around breweries and bars, and, even if the DIY gene missed you, Crowned Sparrow Founder Stephanie Newman can help you create a pin-worthy project. “To me it’s natural to pair craft beer with crafting,” Newman said. “My greatest joy is meeting people who think they can’t do creative things but then they come and make something they are truly proud of.”
Many of Crowned Sparrow’s projects are homages to the Queen City, like the popular nail-and-string-art of the state outline with a heart over Charlotte. To join a class, check out the calendar on Crowned Sparrow’s website and buy tickets in advance. Then you can just show up, drink beer (the classes are often at breweries) and make a cool project.
Crowned Sparrow Co.: Locations vary
Anders Ruff Workshop
Founders Maureen Anders and Adria Ruff’s new boutique workshop in downtown Pineville will help step up your home decor game with plank wood signs, pillows, chalkboard art and more.
After seeing Anders Ruff’s DIY blog gain a huge following, the ladies decided to take their creativity to the streets with a workshop where they could help people create projects in-person.
“There is a huge sense of satisfaction that comes from creating a piece of art or home decor from scratch,” Anders said. “Customizing it with your color and stain choices, on top of custom AR Workshop graphics is just the icing on the cake.”
Check out the calendar online to decide when to schedule your next girls night — then BYOB.
Anders Ruff Workshop: 322 Main St., Pineville
Nailed It DIY Studio
This studio is worth the short drive south, especially for moms who want to create cute-yet-practical items like chore charts and back-to-school “favorite things” boards.
Co-owner Misty Grant’s mission is to empower women by teaching them to use tools and learn skills they can apply outside the studio. She and co-owner and founder Shannon Evans started Nailed It DIY in 2014 to help would-be crafters turn their projects from Pinterest fails to professional quality. The ladies pride themselves on coming up with new projects and unique techniques that you won’t always find on the Internet.
They can even help you with custom designs, stencils and more — just call ahead of time. The calendar online lists which classes are available, and they change seasonally. This month’s classes include a beer bottle opener, a wooden race medal/bib display and a carry-all caddy. Oh, and BYOB.
Nailed It DIY Studio: 1642 Highway 160 West, Fort Mill (inside Birds of a Feather Gift Boutique)
Photos: Shannon Evans from Nailed It DIY, Stephanie Newman of Crowned Sparrow Co., Anders Ruff