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Sometimes, Memorial Day appears out of thin air. And you may not always have plans to fill the three-day weekend. Before sending yourself into a frenzy while looking for things to do, check out these final-hour Memorial Day activity ideas.

Get outside.

Escape to the great outdoors this Memorial Day weekend. Find hiking trails near you to explore or, if you’re lucky enough to live near a National Park, take a day trip to experience some of the most beautiful places in the United States.

A day on the green with a golf club (whether it’s putting 18-holes or putt-putt), on the tennis courts, or in the swimming pool is always a day well spent. To make this long weekend special, do a little research to find an outdoor activity you might not normally do, like horseback riding, visiting a botanical garden, or even kayaking. The options are truly endless.

Go on a getaway.

How about a last-minute Memorial Day weekend getaway? Round up the children, pack up some goodies, and take a scenic road trip to a nearby city you’ve always wanted to visit. And if you’d like to enjoy a little peace and quiet during your three-day weekend, consider taking a mini-vacation at a nearby cabin or lodge for some much-needed R&R.

Host a game night.

Who doesn’t love a little friendly competition? Send out your last-minute text invites (after all, you’re probably not the only one looking for final-hour Memorial Day ideas), and then bust out the games, sandwiches, chips, fruit, and other goodies. And don’t forget to prepare a few last-minute gathering activities like charades or even a themed scavenger hunt.

Have a cookout.

Get friends and family together with a backyard barbecue! Keep it simple and low-pressure by making it a potluck. Grill up burgers and hot dogs, and let your guests bring the drinks, sides, and desserts to share. Who doesn’t love a cookout to welcome the start of summer?

Take a staycation.

Feel like you’re always on the go? Skip the day trips and activities and plan for no plans this Memorial Day. Stay in and practice some self-care at home. Or, book a nice hotel in town, and enjoy a free weekend away from any obligations.

Tackle a DIY project.

Take advantage of the extra day in your weekend to finish up those home-improvement projects you’ve been meaning to get to. Organize the pantry, purge your closet, sand the deck, or start that garden you’ve always dreamed of. All of that HGTV you’ve been watching is sure to pay off.

Get crafty with Painting with a Twist.

For fun on the fly, join a Pop In & Paint event at a Painting with a Twist studio near you! This freestyle DIY experience is one everyone can enjoy—with no reservation necessary. Plus, you don’t have to worry about hosting or cleanup! With these last-minute ideas, this Memorial Day is sure to be one to remember!

sunflowers in mason jars

Moms are special, and yours is the best in the world. Every year for Mother’s Day, you drape her in gifts, go out for brunch, and you may have crafted homemade cards and little treasures for her when you were younger, too. But what do you do when you can’t be by your mom’s side on this momentous occasion?

Whether your mother lives across the country or on an entirely different continent, it’s possible to show her how much you love, adore, and respect her commitment to you as a parent.

Here are a few epic ways to celebrate Mother’s Day from afar.

1. Send her to a spa.

If you can’t be there in person to pamper your mom yourself, why not give her some professional pampering? If your mom regularly goes to get her nails done or enjoys facials and massages, contact a salon near her and arrange to pay for her next session in advance.

She’ll be pleasantly surprised at your thoughtfulness when she goes in for her next spa day. If you can’t arrange to prepay, a gift card to her favorite place is also a great way to wish her a happy Mother’s Day from far away.

2. Have flowers and chocolates delivered to her door.

Another great way to show your long-distance mom you’re thinking about her on Mother’s day is to send her some fresh flowers and yummy chocolates. A bouquet of her favorite flowers, bursting with spring color, is sure to brighten her day and bring a smile to her face. Indulgent chocolates will send her on an endorphin high that’ll have her smiling from ear to ear.

If your mother is a bit of a gardener herself, sending seeds for flowers or herbs that she loves to grow is a thoughtful gift she can enjoy even after Mother’s Day is over.

3. Craft a handmade card.

If you want to get a little creative with your Mother’s Day gift, consider sending her a handmade card. Everyone loves the thought and effort behind a handmade craft, and moms especially love getting correspondence from their children. That joy at the mailbox is sure to grow exponentially when she sees that you took the time to handcraft the card yourself.

You might include a photo of the two of you together, creating a gift that she’ll be able to cherish and display for years to come. And if you have little ones yourself, get them involved in the crafting process. After all, the only people a mom loves more than her own kids are her grandkids!

4. Paint artwork together — virtually.

If your mom is artistic herself, you might also consider doing something creative together—even if you can only spend time with one another virtually. Painting with a Twist offers Twist at Home Paint Kits that allow you and your mom to spend quality time together as you explore your artistic sides. You can both pick up the same kit at the studio nearest you (or curbside), open a bottle of wine on each end of your virtual painting session, and enjoy a relaxing Mother’s Day long-distance.

5. Sign her up for a subscription package.

If you want to take things the extra mile this Mother’s Day, consider signing your mom up for a monthly (or quarterly) subscription package. There are many great options to choose from, including perfume and jewelry boxes, fitness kits, wine bundles, and more. Just make sure to choose a subscription package that fits her needs, hobbies, and personality! She’ll remember your thoughtfulness and effort every time a new box is left on her doorstep.

6. Plan a surprise visit.

While sending your mom Mother’s Day gifts when you live far away is a wonderful way to show her you love her, imagine the joy on her face if you were to deliver those gifts in person.

Consider taking a road trip or booking a flight to wherever she lives, and show up on her doorstep with a gift in hand. And if you are able to visit her in person, that means you can replace virtual quality time with quality time in real life. You can visit that spa together or go in-person to an in-studio Mother’s Day Painting with a Twist event — making memories that will last a lifetime.

Celebrate Mother’s Day with Painting with a Twist

Want to make your long-distant mom feel extra special this Mother’s Day? Why not spend time bonding, painting, and sipping with a Twist at Home Paint Kit? Most of our studios across the country offer Twist at Home Paint Kits, which you and your mom can pick up from inside the studio or curbside! Then, you can make a memorable experience out of spending quality virtual time with the best mother in the world.

Find a Painting with a Twist near you (and your mom) today!

mom and daughter holding painting of flowers

School’s out for the summer – and suddenly, your kiddos have loads of free time on their hands. By the second or third week of summer break, it might seem like there aren’t enough bikes, water balloons, books, and play dates to get you through August without resorting to tons of screen time. Don’t let your family fall victim to “summer brain drain.” Here are eight creative summer activities for kids.

1. Participate in your local library’s summer reading challenge.

Whether your child is a natural bookworm, or they enjoy a little competition, keep their imagination soaring by participating in a summer reading challenge. Head to your local library to see if they’ve got a challenge going on, and sign your little one up.

If your local library doesn’t have a reading challenge in the works, check out your online options. Keep your child motivated by offering prizes for meeting reading goals and scheduling regular family library outings to stock up on new books.

Pro tip: If you typically try to point your child toward educational books, relax a bit during the summer. Let them discover the joys of pleasure reading!

2. Have a good old-fashioned lemonade stand.

Lemonade stands have become a lost art. This summer, help your child set up their own lemonade stand (or cookie or snow cone or juice stand) so they can sell treats to the neighborhood. Not only does this get them outside and off the screen, it’s also a great opportunity to teach them about money, marketing, and customer service!

Pro tip: Lemonade stands are not legal in every state. Check your local laws before engaging in this activity.

3. Collect cardboard boxes and craft a cardboard castle.

Don’t toss out those Amazon boxes just yet! Start collecting them now and get ready for some exciting summer creative activities. Challenge your child to build a cardboard fort, or any cardboard structure they’re inspired to create. Provide paint, stickers, markers, and other dollar store supplies to decorate their masterpiece.

4. Go “camping” in the backyard or living room.

Camping is a quintessential summer activity, but you don’t have to pack up the car or sacrifice indoor plumbing to get the experience. Pitch a tent in the backyard or roll sleeping bags out onto the living room floor. Then, go “camping” as a family. Make s’mores, play flashlight tag, tell ghost stories, and star gaze. With a little planning and creativity, you can make your backyard feel like a wondrously secluded campsite.

5. Make a family time capsule.

No one understands how quickly time flies more than a parent. You’ll never get this summer back, and one day you’ll look back on these days with fond nostalgia. Challenge your kids to find mementos and souvenirs to put in a family time capsule. Have them write letters and draw pictures to their future selves. Together, agree on a date for opening the time capsule (whether it’s in one year or a decade).

6. Create masterpieces at Painting with a Twist!

When your child lets their creativity flow, they’re also processing feelings, finding innovative approaches to life, developing their imagination, and cultivating their own uniquene personality. At Painting with a Twist’s Summer Camps and Kids Classes, they’ll get the chance to do all of these things while developing a new skill and making friends! Find a Kids Camp near you, and give your child the ultimate creative kids summer.

7. Go on a mini road trip.

It’s easy to overlook many of the exciting things that are happening close to home. Take your child on a mini road trip to the next town over, and play tourist together. Observe the location and landscapes with fresh eyes, explore local parks, museums, pools, and any other tourist “hot spot” you can find. Your child will love the change of scenery, and you may even find a renewed appreciation for where you live!

8. Deliver some “for no reason” summer care packages.

It’s always fun to make someone smile! This summer, help your child create care packages for a neighbor, relative, or friend who could use a little pick-me-up. Bake cookies, pick flowers, or create homemade cards together. Let your child decide take the reins when deciding what to add to their summer care package. Once everything is complete, take them to deliver their thoughtful treats and goodies. Your kiddo is sure to learn a little more about empathy and how pleasant it is to make a person’s day.

Enjoy a Creative Kid Summer at Painting with a Twist!

Why not ensure both childcare and creative stimulation for your kiddos this summer? By having your child join a Painting with a Twist’s Summer Kid’s Camp, you can do it all. Keep your children creatively stimulated this summer break as they make new friends and explore everything their imagination has to offer. Sign up today at a Painting with a Twist near you!

Kids painting at summer kids camp

Team-building activities can be an opportunity for your staff to bond, connect, and learn how to work better together. Or, they can be a time that everyone dreads and remembers as a royal waste of time.

Planning a corporate team-building day or event? We’re here to help you steer clear of common event planning mistakes. Learn how to plan a corporate team-building event that’s engaging, inclusive, and memorable with these tips.

Corporate Team Building: Why It Matters

Maybe you already know how effective team-building events can be. Or perhaps you’re still asking, “Why is corporate team-building important?” The answer is simple: it brings your team closer together on a human level so they can work better together on a professional level. Plus, team-building helps break up the everyday routine of work to help everyone stay motivated, avoid burnout, and form valuable relationships.

In the long run, corporate team-building events can increase employee engagement, boost productivity, and improve company culture — all of which are a win-win for you AND your team members.

Team Building Gone Wrong: Event Planning Mistakes to Avoid

If you haven’t planned a team-building event since the days of trust fall exercises and high ropes courses, it’s time to change your approach. Learn how to avoid team-building mishaps and dodge these event planning no-nos.

1. Ignoring inclusivity.

It’s one thing to ask your team members to step out of their comfort zones for an activity they might not usually try. But things can get sticky — and fast — when you plan activities that go against legitimate limitations, like physical abilities and phobias.

As you work through the event planning process, ask for feedback from other team members (see #4!) to ensure that your big day won’t alienate anyone. Choose team-building games and activities that will allow your team’s diverse abilities to shine so that everyone leaves feeling empowered and encouraged.

2. Not dispersing cliques.

Nothing can turn your workplace into a drama zone like cliques gone wild. While it’s a great thing for your team members to have friends within the office, corporate team building days are a time for everyone to build new relationships— not retreat into the comfort of existing ones. Are you hosting a scavenger hunt or other competing events? Be sure to assign teams randomly, so everyone feels included.

3. Staying at the office.

Hosting a successful event for your team starts with a relaxed environment. And guess what? The office isn’t conducive for that, period. No matter how “chill” your company culture is, your team likely won’t be able to let their guard down as long as they’re still within the four walls of the office (or their home office, if you have a remote culture).

If possible, host your event at an offsite location where everyone can meet in person. If that’s not feasible, utilize social media and real-time activities via video conference to create a feeling of togetherness, even when there’s physical distance between team members.

4. Not asking for help and input.

When it comes to corporate team-building events, the “team” part should start from day one. Having one person plan everything (on top of their regular job duties!) is not only exhausting for that person— it could lead to a disorganized disaster.

Ask for your team’s input on activity preferences. You might be surprised by the creative team-building activity ideas your staff can come up with, and everyone will have more buy-in for the event if they’ve had a say in the plan. Got a big team to host? Consider hiring an event planner to help ensure the big day goes smoothly and provides value for all involved.

5. Hosting only one team-building event per year.

Whether you have a team of 5 or 500, make it a priority to host team-building events throughout the year. One big day per year might not be enough to keep employee engagement up, but planning several events can provide multiple opportunities for constructive breaks.

Besides, you’d hate for someone to miss out if they’re out of town or unable to make your ONE event (Remember that inclusivity bit?). It’s always a good idea to plan a special event for your team around the holidays, but don’t stop there! Keep the team-building spirit going all year long with quarterly or even monthly events.

How to Plan a Team-Building Day The Easy Way

Finding a venue and planning activities for your corporate event takes a lot of time and energy, but you’d rather skip to the fun part! Your local Painting With a Twist studio is your one-stop shop for your next team-building event.

We’ll set up the room, provide supplies, and give you and your team the instruction and tools you need to create a fun piece of art while you connect and bond. What are you waiting for? Plan your corporate paint party today and give your team the day they deserve.

Corporate team building event

Empowerment stems from feelings of strength and confidence. It’s the initiative you take in owning your happiness, taking charge of your life, and truly knowing what it is that you stand for. Empowerment is something everyone should experience.

In honor of International Women’s Day, use these tips to start taking control of your happiness and begin your journey towards feeling more empowered every dang day!

Prioritize Your Health

Your well-being is the most important: mental, emotional, and physical. By prioritizing all facets of your health, you’ll start to feel strong, capable, empowered, and worthy. Start each day off right with these empowering things:

  • Drink water — eight 8 oz glasses per day is recommended.
  • Maintain a healthy, nutritious diet.
  • Get plenty of sleep.
  • Put away your phone and disconnect first thing in the morning and before bed.
  • Get some fresh air (and hopefully a little sunshine) every day.
  • Move your body for at least 30 minutes each day.
  • Schedule at least 30 minutes of downtime every day to pamper yourself. No work, no chores, no emails, no obligations.
  • Watch your mental health — meditation, therapy, spiritual practice, social media detoxes, etc.
  • Find a hobby you love — maybe even try something new! Mastering something that you find interesting is a major confidence boost, not to mention it’s just plain fun!
  • Invest in your relationships — having a solid support system of family and friends is essential. But be sure to give as much as you take to allow these benefits to ebb and flow both ways.

Practice Selflessness & Generosity

Take care of yourself so that you can make an impact. A healthy you can do a lot for others! When you are doing something for someone else or become a part of something bigger than yourself, you’ll feel bigger, too.

Remember: empowered women empower women (and men, too). So get out there and make a difference!

Set Boundaries

Boundaries are healthy. You are not Superwoman — so stop trying to do it all. If you say “yes” to every request and commitment, you’ll run yourself into the ground. There’s no need to feel guilty for saying “no” if you’re feeling overwhelmed or spread too thin.

You’ll have more of yourself to give to the things you do say “yes” to if you choose wisely. Prioritize based on your goals, dreams, and passions, and you’ll feel empowered to put your best foot forward.

Believe in Your Beliefs

It’s important to know what you stand for and what empowers you. Putting both into perspective will ultimately allow you to own and breathe life into what you believe in.

Ask yourself these questions about your own beliefs:

  • What issue/topic/organization/movement am I passionate about?
  • Why do I feel passionate about that issue/topic/organization/movement?
  • How can I learn more about that issue/topic/organization/movement?
  • How can I peacefully and confidently defend or promote that issue/topic/organization/movement?
  • What do I have to offer that issue/topic/organization/movement?

Go After Your Dreams

You go, girl! What do you want to accomplish this week…this month…this year? Where do you see yourself in five years…10 years? Your goals can be short-term or long-term. They can work toward career development, stronger relationships, stable finances, travel, etc. Whatever they are, a game plan is necessary for achieving your goals. Here’s how to start going after dreams.

  • Set realistic goals. Nothing is less empowering than setting yourself up to fail. So, make sure you have the resources you need to succeed.
  • Make a plan with a timeline to help you take actionable steps toward your goals.
  • Create a vision board that inspires you to dream big and accomplish your goals.
  • Find a tribe to support and encourage you, and ask for help when you need it.
  • Take those steps!
  • Be flexible, grant yourself grace, and re-evaluate your plans when needed.

Set Daily Intentions

Intentions are a little different than goals. Think of intentions as your mantra or wish for the day. For example, your daily intention could be “I will not stress about things outside of my control today,” “I will be present in each moment today,” or “I will embrace the qualities of an empowered woman.” Add this practice into your morning routine to start each day on the right foot.

Foster a Positive Mindset

A positive outlook on life can help you feel more empowered in your corner of the universe — and empower women around you, too. Add these three things to your routine to keep a positive mindset and empower your life:

  • Calm your mind with mindfulness activities.
  • Practice meditation to center yourself.
  • Keep a gratitude journal to focus on what’s going right in your life.
  • Strike a power pose. Stand tall in front of a mirror with your feet shoulder-width apart, shoulders back, and hands on your hips. Hold the pose for at least 30 seconds and feel the confidence build.

Celebrate YOU

With daily expectations and harsh comparisons, it can be easy to forget how bold and beautiful you really are. Take the time to cheer yourself on, and eventually, you’ll feel empowered, confident, and strong!

  • Take a women’s empowerment course or find a club or organization that offers empowerment tools for women.
  • Write yourself an encouraging note and put it on your bathroom mirror, or hang an inspiring piece of art on your bedroom wall as a reminder of your strength.
  • Acknowledge your accomplishments and share them with friends and family.
  • Treat yourself! When you reach a goal (big or small), reward yourself with a little something you enjoy.

Are you ready to own your narrative and empower yourself for years to come? Get started by creating a memento of what a bold, beautiful, and empowered woman you really are by joining a Diva Painting event at your nearest Painting with a Twist studio.

You Are Stronger Than You Think Artwork

Maintaining friendships in adulthood can be a struggle, but making new friends can feel downright impossible! Fortunately, with a little effort, cultivating quality relationships as an adult is something anyone can achieve. Get on the road to healthy, lasting friendships with these tips for making new friends as an adult.

1. Figure out what kind of friend you are.

Before you get too caught up in learning how to make more friends as an adult, it’s important (and eye-opening) to consider what you enjoy, what you want, and what you bring to the table.

Are you searching for a big, rowdy group of friends to explore local bars with? Are you eager to find one or two friends to join you on your morning jogs? Maybe you’d like to start a book club and can’t wait to recruit some fellow bookworms. Once you really think about the kinds of friends you want in your life, you’ll have a better idea of where you might find them.

More importantly, consider the kind of friendship you’re offering. It’s cliché but true: you attract what you put out there. Are you loyal? Are you trustworthy? Are you caring, fun to be around, and generous? This is the perfect time to consider if there is anything you can work on to be the best friend possible.

2. Do activities that you enjoy.

The easiest way to find friends who like the same things as you is to go do those things! It can feel awkward attending activities while on a mission to mingle, but it’s one of the best ways to connect with people who share your interests.

If you’re a sports junkie, join a local intramural team or start watching games at the local sports bar. Join a knitting club, take a yoga class, socialize at the farmer’s market – go to the places that you enjoy and engage in your hobbies! There, you can strike up conversations with likeminded individuals. You may be surprised by how receptive people are to making new friends.

3. Embrace your local network.

Some of the very best friends start off as a “friend of a friend.” Even if you don’t see a potential best friendship with your coworker or your neighbor, you certainly may find a kindred spirit through your extended network.

Join your coworker for a lunch with friends, accept your neighbor’s invitation to their cookout, go on a double date with your partner’s acquaintances, and humor your mom by getting coffee with her college roommate’s kid. You never know where you’ll find your people!

4. Be open to trying new things.

While frequenting your favorite places and activities is helpful, branching out is a smart way to get out of a rut if you’re having trouble making friends. Not an artist by nature? Join a pop-in and paint event at your local Painting with a Twist. There, you’ll have the ability to meet new friends while laughing at your artistic abilities (or lack thereof). At Painting with a Twist, it’s all about creating fun art not fine art during our walk in painting classes. Getting out of your comfort zone is invigorating, and you’ll get the opportunity to cross paths with all new people (A.K.A. potential new friends).

5. Say yes to opportunities and invitations.

Putting yourself out there is hard. Making small talk after a long work week is exhausting. Trying something new can be nerve-wracking. But that’s how you’ll start forming friendships. When you’re presented with an invitation, activity, or opportunity, say yes!

Putting yourself out there isn’t always easy or even appealing; maybe you’ve got your hands full with kids or work, or maybe you’d just rather binge watch Euphoria for the second time. If you’re serious about making new friends, say YES and carve out some time for socializing.

6. Understand that adult friendships take work.

Why is it hard to make friends as an adult? In high school, you saw your friends eight hours a day whether you wanted to or not. In college, you probably lived with your nearest and dearest. Now, as a full-grown adult, you’ve got a million responsibilities and you can go weeks without seeing your best friend – unless you put in the work.

Prioritize your new and existing friendships. Check in with them and don’t be afraid to initiate plans. Show up for friend dates even when it’s not convenient. Friendships in adulthood are enriching and rewarding, so don’t let them fall to the wayside.

Cultivate New Friendships at Painting with a Twist

Making new friends as an adult isn’t the easiest task, but it’s certainly a worthwhile one. Put yourself out there, and it won’t be long before you find your squad. Ready to put the paint in friendship? Join a pop-in and paint event at your local Painting with a Twist studio and start building new connections today!

lady with flowers in her hair

Feel like you’ve celebrated Valentine’s Day in every imaginable way possible—dinners, movies, flowers, etc.? We’ve got a few ideas that’ll have your significant other swooning with affection and appreciation, regardless of their love language. Get started with this 14-day love challenge, and make Valentine’s 2022 one for the books!

What is 14 Days of Love?

14 Days of Love is a Valentine’s countdown. In the days leading up to Valentine’s Day (February 1st through February 14th), gift your loved one with a present or activity that brings them joy. The ideas you choose don’t need to be expensive. Just make sure they’re thoughtful and specific to your partner’s personality, preferences, and hobbies.

Love Notes

Love notes are tried and true. And for a partner who loves verbal affirmations, a detailed letter outlining the depths of your affection is a surefire way to make them feel extra special. Explain what you love about your partner and tell them all the things you look forward to in the relationship. Get detailed. Get cringey. And most of all, get hopelessly romantic.

Your partner and your love are unique. Here are a few different ways to personalize your love note.

1. Handwritten Valentine: Boos or beaus who prefer traditional vows of affection might enjoy a handwritten, old-fashioned valentine note. Deck your letter with red and white hearts and line it with elegant white lace.

2. Thoughtful texts: If your significant other prefers more modern forms of affection, consider sending them romantic texts throughout your 14 days of love.

3. Valentine’s crossword: Got an S.O who swoons for a bit of wordplay? Sweep them off their feet with a homemade Valentine’s crossword puzzle.

Quality Time

A Valentine’s Day date is usually the pinnacle of any Valentine’s Day celebration. This year though, get creative with how you spend time with your loved one. In the days leading up to Valentine’s, try doing things that are tailored to you as a couple.

Maybe you’re the “swole” couple that everyone envies. In which case, dropping by a fitness convention may be the ultimate date idea. Or perhaps, you and your partner champion yourselves as foodies. Why not try a dining in the dark experience or cooking class? Whatever activities you choose, get creative, and ensure they’re something you and your S.O. will enjoy!

Fill your Valentine’s calendar with a few more of these romantic ideas:

4. Go for a treat: Spoil your loved one with their favorite treat, whether that’s a coffee, ice cream sundaes, or a cocktail.

5. Take a hike: Nothing says love like a sweaty hike with a miraculous view. If your partner enjoys the greater outdoors, plan a nature hike at a local park or trail.

6. Stimulate their artistic side: For artsy boos and beaus, surprise your partner with concert tickets, take them to their favorite museum, or stimulate some love hormones with a couple’s paint night.

7. Take a short trip: Nothing says romance like a baecation getaway. Book a trip to a local bed and breakfast so the two of you can enjoy some quality alone time.

Acts of Service

One of the best ways to show love to your partner is to undertake thoughtful tasks that will both brighten their day and free up their time. Seek out things on their to-do list, and present them with the finished product. These acts can be small, but they’ll definitely be appreciated.

8. Bring them coffee in bed: Get up a little early, and surprise your lover with morning coffee in bed. For bonus points, make a full breakfast!

9. Clean the house: Take over some of their household chores, like cleaning up rooms around the house, mowing the lawn, or even something as simple as making the bed.

10. Give them some alone time: This might seem odd, but often a quiet night in—alone—is what your partner may appreciate most. Clear the house of kids and pets, and let your S.O. bask in the serenity of silence.

Give a Gift

Gift-giving is the hallmark of Valentine’s Day. Instead of sticking to more traditional items like chocolate, flowers, and teddy bears throughout your Valentine’s countdown (although these are never a bad idea!), try expanding your repertoire by presenting your S.O. with gifts specific to the relationship.

Here are a few ideas:

11. Personalized playlists: Create a playlist of their favorite songs or curate tracks that take them on a stroll down memory lane.

12. Books: If the love of your life is an esteemed bookworm, this one’s a no-brainer. Get them that book they’ve been eyeing at the bookshop, or purchase them a gift card from their favorite bookstore.

13. Homemade coupons: Write them a handwritten coupon for something they need or want. And if you’d like to make this gift extra special, try making a romantic coupon book full of thoughtful offers instead.

14. Massage: Life can be stressful, so spoil the one you love with a massage or an at-home spa day that will help make all that tension disappear. Want to take your 14 days of love up a notch? Bring your partner to a Date Night event at your local Painting with a Twist studio! They’ll enjoy sipping, painting, and spending quality time with their favorite Valentine! Book an event today, and your boo or beau will feel all the time, effort, and passion you’ve put into making this Valentine’s Day one for the books!

couple cheersing with champagne

Have you ever wanted to create your own abstract painting — without the pressure of perfection? Acrylic paint pouring draws in tons of artists — newbies and professionals alike — and now you can try your hand at it too! If you’re looking for a unique, low-pressure way to express your creativity, paint pouring is the way to go. Learn all about the different paint pouring techniques here.

How Paint Pouring Works

Paint pouring relies on the organic mixing of paint to create a painting like no other. And, no two paint pours are ever alike — ever! Paint pouring is a beautiful painting style that combines science and art.

But how does paint pouring work, exactly? Painters pour fluid acrylic paints onto the surface of a canvas. Then, they allow the paint to ebb and flow across the board to create a one-of-a-kind abstract painting. Since the paint does most of the work for you, paint pouring allows for a low-pressure, fun, and calming creative process.

Benefits of Paint Pouring

There are many benefits to painting as a whole — from fine-tuning your motor skills to boosting memory and mood. With paint pouring, however, you can experience all of the pros of putting brush to canvas — and more.

Since you’re not feeling the pressure of creating a finely-tuned, perfectly aligned piece of art, this less-stress painting style can help put you in a relaxing meditative state. Art is supposed to be calming and fun. So, whether you’re experiencing painter’s block or are a beginner looking for a zen experience, acrylic paint pouring is sure to deliver!

Best Paint Pouring Techniques to Try

How many different ways can you mix paint and then pour it onto a canvas? There are dozens of methods, each creating their own brilliant effect when the painting is finished. Here are just a few of our favorite paint pouring techniques.

Puddle Pour

With puddle pouring, each paint color is individually mixed with a pouring medium. Afterward, each color is poured, one after the other, onto the center of a canvas. Once a deep puddle of paint has formed, the painter rotates, twists, and adjusts the canvas until the paint spills over the edges, creating an incredible infinity effect. Needless to say, this painting style can get a bit messy. So be sure to leave your favorite jean jacket at home!

Dirty Pour Flip Cup

An acrylic dirty pour technique requires each paint color to be thinned with a medium, stacked into a cup, and then poured onto the canvas. The design is controlled by how you pour and release the paint from the cup. Once the paint is applied, you can move, twist, and play with the canvas to manipulate your design before it dries.

Dirty pour flip cup is an easy paint pouring technique for beginners, and a really fun one to add your own twist to!

Flip Cup Acrylic Pour

Flip cup pouring is similar to the dirty pour, but instead of slowly spilling the paint, the full cup of paint is pressed to the surface of the canvas and then lifted in one swift, fluid motion. From there, you can play with and tilt the canvas until you reach your desired outcome.

Tree Ring Pour

In a tree ring technique, the paint colors are mixed and combined just like in the flip cup style. However, the final cup is poured out in a circular motion — from center to edge — until the entire canvas is covered. This style has a “tidier” effect, but manipulating the paint before allowing it to spill off the edges is still loads of fun.

String Pull Technique

String pulling usually involves a base layer of paint (or paints) before layering one or more strings across the canvas. There are many different techniques within the string pull method, but the most straightforward approach requires paint to be poured on top of the string.

The final outcome and pattern of a string pulled piece relies on two things; how the string is initially layered on top of the canvas and how it is pulled through the paint. The final results? A dynamic and mesmerizing piece.

Dutch Pour

Dutch acrylic pours rely on air-producing tools like hair dryers or canned air. This style starts very similarly to flip cup acrylic pours, but the final steps yield wild abstractions. With the right tool, you can push and lure the colors around the canvas for a smokey, watery finish.

Join a Paint Pour Event at Painting with a Twist

Ready to try your hand at one of these amazing acrylic pour paint techniques? Book a Paint Pour event at your local Painting with a Twist studio and dive deep into these fun and creative methods.

Paint Pour Art

You write your goals down year after year, only to never look at them again. You’ve got good intentions and high hopes, but that piece of notebook paper never actually seems to help you achieve your goals. It’s time to get creative and make your dreams a reality! Learn how to create an inspiring vision board with these tips and ideas.

What is a Vision Board?

A vision board, or dream board, is a collage of inspiring images that highlights your ideal vision of the future. This helpful tool is created with optimism, mindfulness, and all of the positive thoughts you need to usher in your biggest hopes and dreams.

Why Make a Vision Board?

Have you ever found yourself fired up about a new goal only to have forgotten about it by the week’s end? Vision boards are great for making your dreams and aspirations impossible to forget. By creating a vision board and hanging it up somewhere that you’ll see every day, your goals will always remain at the forefront of your mind.

Want to cross the finish line of a marathon by the year’s end? Those glossy running photos on your vision board could encourage you to lace up your running sneakers every morning. Maybe your biggest goal for the year is to get more creative and step outside your comfort zone. Seeing that easel and brush image each day can give you the push you need to sign up for that painting event you’ve been wanting to try.

In short, a vision board can be a source of confidence and excitement throughout your journey. And if done well, an inspiring vision board can help you take actionable steps towards accomplishing your biggest aspirations.

What are the Different Types of Vision Boards

There is no one-size-fits-all format for creating a vision board. Your goals and dreams are unique, so it’s important to find a technique that accurately represents your goals and motivation style. Fortunately, there are many different types of vision board styles to try out. Check them out below.

Vision Board Layouts

When it comes to vision board layouts, the options are endless! Some people prefer pasting magazine cutouts onto poster boards. Others prefer tacking images onto cork boards or bulletin boards so that they can rearrange, add-in, or adjust their plans when needed. And if you’re not a fan of the arts and crafts route, try creating a digital vision board with a collage or vision board app.

Vision Board Timeframes

A vision board can encompass short-term goals that you can accomplish in a week, month, or season. In which case, you may want to use an adjustable approach like the corkboard option. If you’d prefer to go the long-term route, ensure that your aspirations are detailed with realistic milestones you can accomplish along the way.

Vision Board Themes

If you want to try out different vision board themes, this is the perfect time to get specific about what’s most important to you. Try creating a board that highlights your professional goals, or get super detailed by creating a vision board that showcases your personal and social aspirations. There’s no wrong way to design a vision board. Just make sure the goals you put on it are true to you and your future plans.

Other vision board theme ideas include:

  • Travel Goals
  • Money Goals
  • Romantic Goals
  • Family Goals
  • Health Goals

How to Create a Good Vision Board

Consider Your Goals

Before you start gluing images to your board, consider what goals you’d like to include. It may help to jot down your aspirations on a piece of paper before beginning. And remember, there are no wrong answers when it comes to what to put on your vision board.

Find Relevant Images

When finding visuals that you find attractive, eye-catching, and motivating, get creative. You can hunt through magazines, scroll through Pinterest, draw or paint your own pictures, add-in photographs, or print out graphics — whatever you find inspiring! In the end, your finished vision board should be something you enjoy looking at daily.

Showcase Your Vision Board

When you’ve finished arranging your images, hang your vision board somewhere that’s easy to spot. Hang it next to your coffee maker, tape it to your mirror, showcase it in your home office, or prop it up proudly on your nightstand. And if you’ve created a digital vision board, set it as your phone background or print it out.

Whatever you do, don’t let your vision board collect dust or sit in a drawer. And, as you start working toward your goals, don’t be afraid to add, remove, and rearrange your images if needed. After all, dreams and goals evolve as we do.

Remember: Your vision board doesn’t need to make sense or look beautiful to anyone else as long as it helps you visualize your goals on a daily basis.

Accomplish Your Goals at Painting with a Twist

Is “become more creative” or “get a new hobby” a big goal for you this year? Maybe you simply want to add a little more artistic flair to your vision board. What better way to accomplish all of these things than by joining a paint and sip event at Painting with a Twist?

Whether you’re embarking on a creative journey or diving headfirst into a new hobby, Painting with a Twist has the atmosphere, supplies, and inspiration you need to get the goal done.

handing holding starfish against a sunset

Even when Santa Claus has come and gone, your Christmas decor remains. While the Christmas season may be coming to a close, winter isn’t over! So, don’t box up your Christmas decor quite yet. With a few tweaks and additions, you can transform your home into a tasteful winter wonderland. Here are four tips that can help you transition from Christmas decor to winter decor.

1. Remove the Red in Favor of Winter-Inspired Hues

Do you tend to stick with traditional red and green decor? Or, perhaps you embrace the whimsy of color. Either way, paring back on bold colors is the best way to take your existing decor from Christmas to winter.

The traditional red and green color combo is synonymous with Christmas, and a bold and brightly-hued colorful Christmas display won’t do the trick once the New Year hits.

To transition your decor from Christmas to winter, begin by removing the bulk of your red Christmas decorations. Then, start removing any other vibrant colors.

In their place, incorporate color schemes that are closer to your typical year-round decor. Opt for a winter-inspired color palette that emphasizes soft neutrals, winter whites, and metallics. Sprinkle in accents of deep green, pale blue, or a light pink tone. Doing so will help your winter decor blend in more seamlessly with your “all-season” interior style.

Don’t forget to switch up your outdoor decorations! You’ll want to spruce up your front and back porch, too.

2. Add a Touch of Nature with Greenery

The winter months following the holiday season bring fresh snowfall — and bare trees. Combat the lack of vibrancy outdoors and liven up your living space with touches of nature-inspired decor.

This is one of the best post-Christmas decorating ideas because you can use many of the Christmas decorations you already own. You can add a touch of life to your home with your existing garland, bottle brush trees, and wreaths — so long as they aren’t overly embellished.

From bohemian to traditional, winter greenery has its place in any interior style. Tweak your greenery to create a space that’s all your own! Create a ski chalet vibe by incorporating pinecones, chestnuts, birch accents, and even crisp white and green florals. Mix and match greenery, metallics, and wood elements to create tablescapes, centerpieces, vignettes, and window dressings. Consider using flocking spray or faux snow to add a seasonally appropriate snow-kissed touch.

If you’re a plant lover, Norfolk Island pines, Paperwhite Zivas, Christmas cactus, and rosemary can all be grown indoors over the winter months.

3. Create Cozy with Hygge Inspired Decor

Fending off the post-holiday blues? Growing weary of chilly, dark evenings? Take a note or two from the Danes and hygge-ify your home! Hygge inspired details can help you create a warm and cozy atmosphere perfect for slowing down and appreciating this calmer, cooler season of life.

Start by brightening up your space. String up soft-white Christmas lights or delicate fairy lights to create a softly lit glow. Adorn bookshelves, end tables, and even windowsills with faux candles to add a feeling of warmth. Or, place candlesticks in metallic candle holders to create a luxurious feel.

Then, create a lounge area perfect for sipping hot cocoa or indulging in a movie marathon! Layer on white pillows, chunky cable knit blankets, faux fur throws, or wool blankets. In chilly months, the more blankets the merrier.

4. DIY Your Own Winter Decor at Painting with a Twist

Don’t forget to add a winter touch to your walls. From watercolor landscapes to artful photographs of snow-covered cityscapes, there’s plenty of gorgeous winter-inspired wall art to choose from!

But, there’s no winter artwork piece more meaningful than the one you create in the company of friends or family. Thankfully, Painting with a Twist makes it easy to create your own inspiring winter-themed artwork! Find a winter-themed event at your nearby studio and drop in to create your very own work of winter art. Bring your creativity, and we’ll handle the rest!

wine bottle with flowers
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