House & Home

Classes help customers craft their own West Bottoms style

Lynn ........(left) and instructor Joni Bell offer painting and furniture finishing workshops at The Painted Sofa in the West Bottoms.
Lynn ........(left) and instructor Joni Bell offer painting and furniture finishing workshops at The Painted Sofa in the West Bottoms.

There’s no limit to the creative ways boutique owners and flea market vendors in the West Bottoms reimagine vintage items. And many of them will help you do the same by teaching their techniques in classes both on First Friday weekends and throughout the month.

Want to know how to make a wreath inspired by Joanna Gaines’ Magnolia Farm? Restoration Emporium can teach you how. Want to learn cake decorating? Serendipity will begin holding classes on that in coming months.

The Painted Sofa’s Joni Bell and Lynn Bandyk of Bella B. Decor are spending a recent Saturday afternoon during a First Friday weekend in a back room on the second floor of the Painted Sofa demonstrating how to use Annie Sloan chalk paint.

The chalky paint, Bell says, covers the shiniest of surfaces with a soft matte finish without the need for stripping, sanding or priming beforehand. She has painted every type of surface and furniture, including fabric sofas, brass chandeliers and glass vases, with it.

Bell demonstrates on a small green end table by dipping a stubby, flat-top paint brush into dark gray paint she has squirted onto a paper plate.

“Don’t worry about brush strokes because they can be sanded,” she says, as she dabs and daubs from every direction.

The paint dries quickly, allowing her to put two coats on within a few minutes, followed by a coat of Annie Sloan wax, which she also applies with a flat-top brush before wiping into the layers of paint. When she is finished, the table is a dark, softly gleaming opaque gray that would look fantastic with a big fern perched atop it.

This particular instruction was free and open to customers of the Painted Sofa. For a fee, the two also offer hands-on workshops on using chalk paint, as well as on how to make a patina canvas using Modern Masters Metal Effects paint and products.

A little while later, several women gather around a large crafting table at Bella Patina for a personalized floral monogram class taught by Kristin Ruthstrom and Ashley Scherer of the Makery KC.

They are all sipping sparkling wine and nibbling tea cakes while hot gluing silk flowers into large, hollowed out papier-mache letters with spray-painted gold sides.

“It looks like they’re going to be doing some other really cool crafts, so I might have to come back,” says Deb West of Wichita, pointing at a sign advertising upcoming workshops that include making a hanging terrarium and a geometric sculpture that looks like metal but is made of gold painted drinking straws.

July 1-2 classes will include a junior workshop at 9:45 a.m. July 1 for kids to create fireworks rings made of pipe cleaners, a headband or crown. It costs $35 per kid and includes all supplies, chocolate-dipped Oreos and lemonade. Five other workshops for adults will take place throughout July 1 and 2 and will include supplies and a small-bites and wine pairing.

Class listings

Restoration Emporium

1300 Liberty St.

Amy Howard paint workshops, seasonal and holiday decor classes, princess parties

Prices: $30-$45, which includes supplies

For more info or to register: or 913-915-2124

The Pink Daisy

1413 W. 11th St.

Heirloom necklace crafting, upholstery, sign painting, furniture painting, paint and sip parties.

Prices: $15-$50, which includes supplies

For more info or to register: or 816-377-2489

The Painted Sofa

1331 Union Ave.

Annie Sloan Chalk Paint intro, stencil, cabinet, patina classes

Prices: $55-$125, which includes supplies

For more info:

Nook & Cranny KC

1400 W. 13th St.

Chick Paint basic and advanced chalky paint workshops

Price: $75, which includes supplies

For more info or to register: 913-284-4999

Bella Patina

1320 W. 12th St.

An array of workshops

Prices: $35-$75, which includes supplies

For more info:


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