By Tracey Porpora Staten Island Advance, N.Y.
WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) "Board & Brush Creative Studio", is a franchise that teaches patrons how to create their own unique wooden signs. After taking a class at one in New Jersey a Staten Island mom decided to open up her own.
STATEN ISLAND, N.Y.
Monique Roiter says she has "always been a do it yourself type of person."
"Whether that was celebrating a birthday and making a centerpiece, or creating an invitation, I was always trying to figure out a way to do something myself," she said.
And her career as a fashion designer -- working for various brands and even launching her own line of women's contemporary clothing -- for more than 10 years fostered this creativity.
"I got to the point in my career where I felt I needed a change," said Roiter, noting she always had aspirations of owning her own business.
That's when she attended a class at Board & Brush Creative Studio, a franchise that teaches patrons how to create their own unique wooden signs in New Jersey.
"I fell in love with the concept. It felt fun. I decided at that time that I had to change my life and open one," she said. noting that at the time she has just become a mom to a baby girl.
"I also liked that this was something that really brings value to people's lives," added Roiter.
To house the business, Roiter leased a 1,550-square-foot space in South Shore Commons in Charleston, which opened in October.
SIP AND CREATE CONCEPT Similar to the "sip and paint" concept, Board & Brush -- a Wisconsin-based franchise with 190 locations nationwide -- offers patrons a night out where they can drink beer or wine while learning how to create their own decorative wood signs that have the look of vintage heirlooms.
Patrons are taught to wax wood and properly use hammers, sand paper, and/or power tools.
"Anything can be personalized with your name or things like a wedding date, or we have signs where you can list your children's names," she said. "It's really something more than just this class. A lot of this has meaning."
STEP-BY-STEP INSTRUCTIONS While some people might be intimidated by using tools -- like hammers and sandpaper -- to create a sign, Roiter said the classes and teachers make the process easy.
"The step-by-step process is really simple. We breakdown the process of how to distress the wood. We give you the tools to do it, and we show you step-by-step how to do it. We then go into the staining process; we have nine colors of stain to choose from," she said.
"Everyone can pick their own project on any night, and we have over 200 projects in our gallery," Roiter added, noting all colors can be customized.
She hosts private events as well as classes.
The business will host a grand opening event on Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. Flagship Brewery and Nero Black Coffee will be at the event.
"When you come to Board and Brush, it is a night out. You are not just coming to make a sign. You are coming to socialize and have a good time," she said. "I wanted to provide a service that was enjoyable and empowering at the same time."
BOARD AND BRUSH AT A GLANCE Address: 2955 Veterans Rd. West, Charleston Website: https://boardandbrush.com/statenisland/