AR Workshop is a franchise of Do-It-Yourself home décor workshops. Locations can be found all across the country, and now Coronado residents Laura and Chris Nelson have opened up their very own in Coronado.
Opening AR Workshop Coronado at 1033 B Avenue #101
Laura spent her professional career in the dental industry, and when she found an AR Workshop three years ago she shares, “I became addicted. For me, it was great to get away and be creative.” She and her husband spent date nights at AR Workshop before deciding to open one of their own. Chris is a painter and was interested in a retirement project. When the San Diego branch of AR Workshop closed during COVID, Laura and Chris took the leap of faith and reached out to AR Workshop about being part of the franchise.
AR Workshop Coronado is nestled between Lobster West and H&R Block, replacing Coronado Mail and Parcel Center. While most AR Workshops take up 1,200 – 1,800 square feet, this mighty workshop sits at approximately 932 square feet. It holds 24 people per workshop, with multiple workshops during the week and the opportunity to rent out the space for private parties. At the shop, Laura and Chris will be working alongside Chris’ three daughters and Laura’s parents. They are very excited to have three generations to embrace Coronado at the workshop.
About the Do-It-Yourself Workshops
Laura summarizes AR Workshop as, “a do-it-yourself painting workshop with fun retail.” As for projects you can expect, Laura rattles off one of the most popular, “you can personalize signs with a family name or a wedding date. When you come in, everything is set up just for you.” With many options to buy customized signs, Laura expands upon the fun of making your own, “you create memories by doing it yourself and the people you are with.”
For those intimidated by the experience, Laura reassures, “I have never seen a project turn out not good. Every project is unique and it’s yours.” She explains the process, “we design it for you, you follow the steps on the template and there are instructors during class that can help you choose colors.” There is a certain amount of pride that goes into the finished project, “it’s not cheap or cheesy; you want to show it off.”
An example of a project that touched Laura: “There was a personalized cookie recipe that one of the artist’s did, it was her aunt’s recipe who had passed away. She made the signs and gave them to her relatives with the cookies. Her aunt’s legacy lives on.” A common group Laura sees are bachelorette parties, where the bridesmaids help the bride by making signs for her wedding.
What Makes it Coronado
Laura is full of ideas as she describes her plans for the shop within the community. These include summer camps for kids, Independence Day projects, and realtor gifts to name a few. Laura says, “I live in the community and want to involve everyone.” Specific Coronado projects she is working with AR Workshop on include 92118 signs, San Diego city skyline featuring the bridge, map of Coronado, crowns, flip flops, and everything SoCal. “I want it to be Coronado specific, but something different than you see at the other gift shops in town.”
In addition to signs, AR Workshop has chunky blanket classes, ornaments (Laura calls these her favorite!), doormats, canvas items such as aprons and pillows, and projects in combination with others in the community. These can be making a flower box and having a gardener leading on planting, a cookie tray with a baker leading on cookie decorating, and much more. There will always be something new coming to the shop. A Coronado project Laura is looking forward to is cornhole boards, perfect for the year-round wonderful weather here!
Cost: Most of the adult projects range from $40 to $70 and the youth projects range from $40 to $45.
Hours: Hours will be 9 am to 9 pm, with Sundays from 10 am to 6 pm. Workshop times will be scheduled throughout the day. Check the schedule.
Grand Opening: AR Workshop Grand Opening will take place April 2nd and 3rd 2022.