Mother’s Day, 2016

As Mother’s Day weekend comes to a close, I pause to give thanks for the opportunity to own a business where I witness the great celebrations in life. Mother’s day is one such event where moms, sisters, cousins, aunts, kids, grandmas and friends gather. They laugh, they sing, they paint up new memories. Sharing time together is so important! It doesn’t matter WHAT we do together–it matters that we DO together.

My heart is full as I give thanks for my own mom who has done so much for me. My heart is full as I think about my kids–both out of state…I miss them so much…but I’m so lucky. It makes me happy to spend my working hours with so many grateful, happy people.  For now, I wouldn’t want it any other way.


Supporting our Community

The 2015 numbers are tallied, and we are proud to announce that last year, we donated $9,829 in cash and in-kind contributions (gift certificates/paintings, etc.) to local nonprofit and service organizations. We believe that it is our duty as a business to support and give back where we can. Sure, we would love to do more, but as a small organization–nearly $10,000 IS significant.

In addition to these direct contributions, we provide special nonprofit staff pricing, free meeting space for up to 3 hours, and host fundraisers every month for nonprofit organizations. We don’t just talk about it; we demonstrate our values every day!

New in 2016, our charitable contributions program is now going exclusively through Together A Greater Good (TAGG). TAGG allows guests to support the organization of their choice with the click of a button. Allowing our guests to designate a contribution on their behalf is empowering, and we hope our guests and nonprofit organizations will embrace this opportunity. Be sure to TAGG your purchase in our gallery!


Better Than Expected

Don’t you love it when something you plan goes better than you expected? I never anticipated the popularity and creativity of our guests with our door hanger sessions…both continually amaze me. I don’t know if it’s Pinterest driven, but the ideas that our painters have come up with are so incredible.

One thing that we do very well at Village Canvas and Cabernet is guide to the individuality of our guests. A great example is our Paint Your Pet events, where a guest is painting a furry cat, and someone else is painting a sleek Labrador retriever, and someone else an iguana. With the talent of our guiding artists, they are able to take the class step by step and ensure that everyone is successful, regardless of their painting subject.

If you popped your head in one of our door hanger sessions, you would see 20 people, each painting one of 4 or 5 various shapes–each painting their own subject matter. It’s awesome, and going way better than I ever expected!

Omaha Table Talk

For the second year in a row, we are hosting an Omaha Table Talk event on Tues., Feb 9th. The Omaha Table Talk is a program of Inclusive Communities, which ensures everyone has a seat at the table. Their mission is to create space in which people from all communities take part in an open and honest dialogue about diversity & inclusion.

It’s vital for our community to have the opportunity to come together, share a meal (thanks to Dudley’s Pizza for sponsoring the meal at Canvas and Cabernet!), and talk openly and honestly about important issues. We are pleased and proud to be involved!

Cocktail Party Fun

As much as we enjoy paint parties, we find that good ole cocktail party/receptions are so much fun! Casual and personal–the events take on the ‘vibe’ of the planners and the event.

This past week, I hosted my Leadership Omaha class (#32–best class ever!) for a gathering. Even with the impending snow, we had a great turn out. We caught up, promised to see each other again soon, and renewed connections from our class 6 years ago.

Using the space for events other than painting just make sense, and I’m so glad we are able to utilize our venue in this way. Recently, we cleared out some of our consignment displays that were in the middle of the room. Now we have plenty of space for our cocktail tables, and for larger groups–more room for food, etc.

Best. Date. Night. EVER.

So, Valentine’s Day is a big event around Village Canvas and Cabernet. Whether we have groups of friends doing “anti-Valentine’s” outings, and just spending quality time together, or couples making it a special event–we remain quite busy for the week before and after February 14th.

Three years ago, we decided to try something a little different. Sure, we could do a diptych painting, but we do those all year round…we wanted something original, something unique, something that no one else in town is doing. We came up with Paint Your Date.

Our Paint Your Date event includes a bottle of wine, appetizers and a pre-sketched canvas using the cubism style. So, basically, one side of the face is looking sideways, and the other is looking straight on. It’s very clever, and LOTS of fun to paint! It’s definitely not serious, but its definitely special.

We are holding two events this year (like last year), and anticipate both nights to sell out. The cost is $100 per couple.  Seats are limited, but still available. Hurry so you don’t get shut out!

Pushing the Envelope

I love trying out new activities; trying to figure out how to do plan and organize events, and “pushing the envelope”, as they say, especially when there is no real roadmap to follow.

That, my friends, is the beauty of owning your own business. Try things; if they work–awesome! If they don’t work–tweak, try again, or abort. Yes, it’s that easy.

Of course, lots of times we are harder on ourselves than others would be, but it all in all is what makes each business, business owner, event and activity unique!


Happy New Year

We are already half-way through the month of January, 2016. The holidays seems like AGES ago, and winter has taken hold. Personally, I love this time of year. I (for whatever reason) enjoy the crisp cold weather. It makes the gallery seem extra cozy, especially if it happens to be snowing outside.

I didn’t anticipate the “seasonality” of the paint and sip business to the extent it is, but fall/winter/spring is definitely the time we are busiest. During the summer months, there are just too many activities that compete–concerts, picnics, bike riding, vacations–and more. Who wouldn’t rather be outside–at least until it gets brutally hot?

Therefore, I work more during the cold months, and cherish the quiet of the gallery when I arrive every day; anticipating the good cheer of my guests who will arrive to paint, sip, laugh and enjoy some creative time with friends, family and co-workers.

Happy New Year!

The Holiday Season

Owning a small business that caters to groups during the holidays is really special. We are able to witness corporate teams, family groups, friends and relatives sharing time together; creating new memories. While it is a super busy time for us, especially between Thanksgiving and the end of the year, we try to embrace the moment and make sure our guests receive the attention they need and want, every single time they step in the door.

It also makes me recognize how very important it is to take time to “fill my cup” with the love and support my own family and friends have to offer. I hope you are enjoying your time during the hustle and bustle of the holiday season!

Never Say Never

Recently, we started offering wooden cut out shapes to paint for door hangers….after I have been saying for three years that I would “never”. Many people asked why we didn’t –and my answer–they tipped a little too much into the “craft” arena. I wanted to stay as consistent as possible with canvas paintings.

However, the requests didn’t stop–as a matter of fact–they only increased, and I buckled under the pressure. After chatting with an artist friend who used to have a studio at the Hot Shops Art Center, he agreed to cut some prototypes to see how well they were received.

Guess what? The sessions have been enormously popular! I’m happy to say I was wr..wr..wrong. Moral of the story–never say never!