The Start Up Files is a series that aims to find out where good ideas come from and how they happen. Each fortnight we chronicle the journey of someone who brought their idea to life through the Renew Adelaide program. In this article, we chat to Jen Halman from Studio Vino, a paint and sip studio.
After seeing how much fun her friends in the US were having doing ‘paint and sip’ classes, Jen Halman looked for a class in Adelaide. Unable to find any, she decided her only choice was to start her own paint n sip business.
Jen first started running Studio Vino events out of pubs, with each session being centred around recreating a specific painting ranging from public domain works like Vincent van Gogh’s The Starry Night to Jen’s own originals. Rather than being an instructional class, the events are designed to be a relaxed and social atmosphere where people can be creative while enjoying a glass of wine.
“I don’t like calling them classes, I call them events because with a class people think you have to pay attention and learn”
“People that come do it aren’t artists, 90% of people haven’t really painted before. So it’s nice to give them an environment where they don’t feel intimidated. I think that’s why it’s been so popular.”
As Studio Vino’s events became more popular it was becoming more difficult to operate out of pubs. Setting up and packing down took a lot of time and spaces weren’t available during peak times. After a long search for a commercial space, Jen finally landed a rent free space on Pirie St through the Renew Adelaide program.
“I probably wouldn’t have ever done it without a Renew Adelaide space. I was looking for a commercial space for quite a while and agents don’t call you back and they’ll ask these crazy amounts for rent. It just got too hard because it seemed like a lot of places didn’t even want to rent their spaces. So being able to have assistance with that part of it is what made all the difference.”
It’s been five years since Studio Vino began and two years since the launch of their space. It didn’t take long for them to outgrow their original location, last year they moved into the larger space next door. Having their own place has allowed them to host more events but their increasing popularity means they often sell out, sometimes weeks in advance.
For those wanting to get creative at home, Studio Vino has recently started offering online tutorials and home painting kits for sale on their website, including a free class for those wanting to try out the Studio Vino experience.