New businesses focus on bringing arts, crafts and instruction to Summit County
Two new businesses just opened in Summit County, both hoping to inject a little creativity into the community and bring new opportunities for residents and visitors to find their inner artists.
Last month, The Frosted Flamingo and the Summit Arts & Crafts Headquarters officially opened their doors, ushering in a new mobile art studio along with a brick-and-mortar art supply store.
Summit Arts & Crafts Headquarters
The Summit Arts & Crafts Headquarters, on Rainbow Drive in Silverthorne, held its grand opening last weekend. The new business will bring a local solution for artists of different mediums to grab their supplies as well as a place for community members to gather and discuss their shared interests around the arts.
“I think back to when I first moved up here, and I was by myself,” said owner Rachel Sachs, a Massachusetts native and lifelong knitter who landed in Summit County about two years ago. “I really just wanted to have a drop-in place that I could share commonalities with others. I don’t ski or snowboard, and I felt very out of place here. I was missing that community. So I want people to feel like they can come in and find people with similar interests.”
The store offers a variety of arts supplies for drawing and painting, yarn and needle crafts, sewing notions, fabric by the yard and more. Sachs said she’ll frequently update inventory based around customer requests and the most current trends. Hand lettering and calligraphy are hot right now, she said.
In addition to the retail side of things, the shop will offer events to bring people together. Every Tuesday there will be an open craft night at the store, inviting visitors to bring whatever project they’re working on to hang out with fellow crafters while they work. There also will be classes offered at the store on different mediums, including knitting lessons from Sachs herself. Of note, Sachs said she’s looking for additional artists to come share their skills during classes.
Sachs also said she’s hoping that having a local supply store will not only serve those already invested in the arts but entice newbies to come in and take on a new hobby as well.
“We never want the arts to go away,” Sachs said. “Any way we can embrace it and perpetuate it is huge. So it’s important just to be able to provide people with the supplies and classes. I’m also hoping that by having something here, we might also tap into those that either lost the hobby because it was so inconvenient to drive to Denver for supplies or wanted to try it but never did because it wasn’t available. I want to provide for those already involved but also introduce people to new hobbies and things that they’ve never tried before.”
The store is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays. For more information, visit the Summit Arts & Crafts Headquarters Facebook page.
The Frosted Flamingo
You might have seen a big white van with a pink flamingo making its way around the county over the past few weeks or popping up at your favorite bar or coffee shop. Such is the nature of a mobile art studio.
The Frosted Flamingo was founded by Boston native and Summit County resident Becca Spiro, who is looking to redefine the way people look at art — peeling away at the often elitist and intimidating perception to make art more approachable for everyone.
“When I was doing my master’s, I got to travel to the Venice Biennale, and there was so much money and so many important people in the art world,” said Spiro, who has a master’s degree in contemporary art and formerly served as the director of learning and education for BreckCreate. “I finished the program with a bad taste in my mouth for the art world. It’s why people hate art. It feels like everyone is thumbing up their nose and dropping names. I didn’t like the whole scene.
“Art is for everyone and a way to bring people together. That’s always been what I’ve been going for. My goal is for the person who says, ‘I don’t like art’ to come feel inspired and feel that they can do this and maybe connect with someone else.”
To that end, The Frosted Flamingo offers numerous opportunities for the uninitiated to try their hand at creating something for themselves. The company is available for hire to host private events — whether it’s a special day like a wedding or just a group of friends looking to try something new — along with frequent pop-ups at local venues across the county. Spiro will provide materials and instruction so participants can customize their crafts to their liking.
Additionally, if your group is interested in making crafts but doesn’t want the company hosting the event, Spiro will travel to you and drop off all the materials you need to create your own crafts. The business also offers personalized, ready-made items that can be ordered online.
The Frosted Flamingo has a menu of project offerings in the realm of mini-crafts like customized flip-flops and sunglasses, art and home décor like etched wine glasses and wooden signs, health and beauty products like bath bombs, jewelry and accessories, seasonal holiday crafts and even projects just for kids. The full list of offerings can be found at FrostedFlamingo.com.
“I hope that long term, if the business grows more, people will be exposed to art, and it will lead people to make things more with their hands and feel more confident,” Spiro said. “It’s easy to get into a groove in life, get into a routine and keep your head down. I think it’s really important to do something different every day, something that scares you a little and something that’s new. That really is what makes you grow as a person, build that confidence and keep your spirits high. If I can get more people to do that, Summit County would be a happier place.”
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