In April 2021, Lesley Vitel and sister Libbi Vitel-Poole cut the ribbon on their business, Painting With a Twist, located at 268 Solana Road, Ponte Vedra Beach. It’s a unique place where people can learn to paint while connecting with friends and sharing a favorite wine. There’s always something interesting going on with special events, private parties and more.
Tell me about Painting With a Twist and what it offers.
Painting With a Twist is Fun! Plain and simple! No creative or artistic skills are needed. Painting with a Twist is all about connecting with friends over a glass of wine, your favorite snacks and a night of laughs. We offer a variety of painting opportunities. We host nightly in-studio classes for adults, Family Day classes on the weekends, Blacklight Nights and Date Nights. We also host private parties for birthdays, corporate team building events, bachelorette parties, baby showers, wedding showers, kids’ birthdays, and more. We can also host an offsite event at your business. If you can think of something to celebrate, we can host for you.
Both of our studios have been around for about eight years. As new owners of these franchises, it is our mission to make sure that more people learn about what we do and get to experience the fun! We really see an opportunity in areas like Nocatee, Beachwalk and Durbin Crossing to invite them in and experience art in a whole new way.
How do people sign up for what you offer?
You can find our daily calendar of events on our websites at paintingwithatwist.com/studio/ponte-vedra-beach and paintingwithatwist.com/studio/jacksonville-fruit-cove. Each studio has a different calendar, so if you aren't seeing anything that tickles your fancy on one, be sure to check out the other.
What is the “twist” part?
The "twist" is that we are a BYOB studio and you can bring your beverage of choice and finger foods if you’d like. We provide everything you need for your painting class. You are more than welcome to show up 15-30 minutes beforehand to set up decorations, food/refreshments, etc. Don't forget to bring any items to go with your BYO refreshments like plates or napkins. We do have extra cups and wine bottle openers as well. There are many great restaurants and bars in our area that you may want to try out — Two Dudes Seafood, Reds Steakhouse, Woody's BBQ, Domino's Pizza and more.
Tell me about the artists affiliated with your business.
You will love our local artists! Most have worked at Painting With a Twist for years. Our artists range from high school students to retirees in their 60s. Each artist brings their own flair to Painting With a Twist. We have artists that work at Wolfson's Children's Hospital for a nonprofit organization called Art With a Heart. Another one of our artists is a motivational speaker on happiness. We have high school seniors and college students that adore working with your children, other artists that have their own art businesses on the side, as well as artists that are teachers in local schools. They are so talented and entertaining in their own way. We are so blessed to have them in our studios!
How did you decide to launch this business?
Two sisters owning a Painting With a Twist franchise is a dream come true! Libbi was living in Georgia and teaching kindergarten but longed for something to really challenge her creative side. She spoke with her sister about the desire to own a Painting With a Twist franchise in Jacksonville one day. Within weeks, Lesley was contacting Libbi, telling her the Ponte Vedra Beach Painting With a Twist was up for sale. Libbi and Lesley couldn't help but think that was divine intervention! So, they contacted the corporate office just wanting more information, all the while telling them that they weren't ready to purchase the studio because it was in the middle of a school year for Libbi. Well, that lasted for a few short months until they jumped in with both feet and bought it. It took a lot of coordinating and driving back and forth from Georgia to Florida, but they did it. While adjusting to new life in Florida and throwing around the idea of expanding to a second location, the Fruit Cove location came up for sale, and again we said we weren't ready for a second location. Guess how that went? Yep! We inched forward and threw caution to the wind a second time. Now, we own two locations. Lesley is a local Realtor with Keller Williams, so she has always networked with other business owners and focused on marketing. This was a great marriage of skills. But we chose to come together as sibling owners to share the fun!
What do you like most about what you do?
What we like the most about being Painting With a Twist franchise owners is serving the public in a way that promotes fun, memories and maybe even a newfound love of art between our artists and guests. We would love to share our passion with you! Please come join us and our artists for a day or night full of making fun memories with friends and family.
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