This is the first time Painting With a Twist has come to the state of New York, and Fairport residents Jon and Lydia Hahn have the challenging, yet exciting task of introducing it to the public
The husband and wife learned about the lively paint workshop franchise last year from a friend who lived near New Orleans. After researching it, they decided to visit one of the stores in Michigan. Before long, they got the OK to open a store in their hometown.
They signed the lease at the vacant site of the former Sleep Cheap store on Fairport Road and started renovating the space in November 2011.
Ironically enough, one of their first projects was covering blue walls with paint. Now, the walls are a bright yellow with red and black accents, although the owners sometimes see traces of the old color peeking through.
“The blue rears its ugly head every once in a while,” said Jon, with a chuckle. “We’re still finding it.”
At the store, guests sign up for evening sessions in which everyone works from the same template. A painting instructor then stands on stage with a blank canvas and walks them through the painting step-by-step. Visitors can choose which painting they want to create using a calendar that is available online or at the store.
It’s an experience that welcomes painters of all skill levels. Classes for adults are geared toward ages 18 and up, and kids classes start at age 8.
“I want to see people come in and have fun creating their own masterpiece, especially people who don’t think they can paint,” said Lydia.
Both the owners aren’t artists themselves, but both say they look forward to seeing the store become a popular destination.
For adults, the only thing you have to bring is your own alcohol (which will not be allowed on premises if minors are in) — all painting supplies, aprons, and canvasses are included in the cost of each class.
The spacious workshop has a front room for classes and a back room reserved for private parties or group visits, ranging from birthday parties to corporate team-building events.
They also plan to hold a monthly “Painting With a Purpose” event to benefit a charity of their choice. As they look toward their grand opening on Saturday, March 17, both say they look forward to seeing visitors latch on to the concept and come back for more.
“They’ll walk out with something they’ll probably want to put on their wall,” said Jon.