Long Islanders can put their carpentry and painting skills to work at a new upcoming DIY workshop in Patchogue Village
AR Workshop, a national hub for DIY enthusiasts, is slated for 27 South Ocean Avenue, the site of a former nail salon.
Elizabeth Rongo, the franchisee of the next location, appeared in front of the Patchogue Planning Board on Tuesday evening. His store was unanimously approved within fifteen minutes.
Rongo, 45, of Setauket, said clients can register online to build and paint a variety of wood and canvas projects, from framed wood panels to kitchen tops and canvas bins to wall hangings. . Although this is a DIY session, customers will simply receive materials and be left to fend for themselves.
“Basically you sign up for a workshop and you come in and we teach you how to do something awesome for your home,” Rongo said in a phone interview. “We are for everyone and all skill levels. We have ladies’ classes, dates, hen parties, showers, and then we also have kids camps, we have kids parties.
Although Rongo does not serve any alcoholic beverages in her store for adult classes, she said guests are welcome to bring their own. She told the Planning Council that she was preparing to provide prepackaged frozen food to customers because she must have food to sell on-site to comply with the New York State Liquor Authority.
AR Workshop is the brick-and-mortar arm of Anders Ruff, a Charlotte, NC-based graphic design, party style, and online store blog created by Maureen Anders and Adria Ruff in 2010. The company started out as an Etsy store, which Bongo discovered.
“I have always loved entertaining, I have four daughters,” said Rongo. “And I found Anders Ruff on Etsy probably 10 years ago. So I have always loved the business and fell in love with the idea of owning my own store with all of their projects. It’s always changing and evolving, so I’m excited to be a part of it.
The first AR workshop opened in 2016. There are now over 150 locations in 33 states.
Rongo said she decided Patchogue was the best place for an AR workshop due to the mixed age groups that frequent the downtown village. She said she and her husband are frequent guests in the area. “We love the vibe of the city.”
A few months
Rongo said she expects her store to open for classes by the end of August through early September.
She has already started brainstorming ideas for her grand opening. “We’ll have a lot of freebies, as well as quick projects for people to do, sample projects,” she said. “We have a small gift shop, so there will be retail sales. It will be exciting.
Prior to that, Rongo told the Planning Council that she would do some DIY painting to prepare the store herself.
Rongo said people can check the store’s Facebook page and sign up to receive email alerts on the Patchogue AR Workshop website to find out when the store is ready to open.
Curious craftsmen can also check out GreaterPatchogue for more updates on Patchogue’s upcoming AR Workshop.
“It will be a really fun place to discover in Patchogue,” said Rongo. “There is nothing like it in the village, so it will be a fun place to come with your friends, hang out and do a fun project and just enjoy the village.”
Above: Building wooden panels in an RA workshop (credit: arworkshop.com).