(This article is from Forsyth Family Magazine)
Walking into Hoots and Hollers immediately brings a smile, as you can’t help but notice a beautiful blend of colors, patterns, and camaraderie among the artists that draws you to pick up a brush or a pen and join in.
With that, owners LeeAnne Edwards and Millie Barnhart have realized their dream of introducing new people to their world of creative expression. Having bonded as friends and fellow artists through years of watching their sons share sports activities, as well as collaborating on a creative project for LeeAnne’s business, Pintxos Beer Garden, while Millie owned WildFlowers on Hilltop, a local floral and garden business, the two knew their creative flair was a good match for their own business venture. In November 2016, they launched Hoots and Hollers Make & Take Art Shop at a temporary location, before moving to their permanent home in Robinhood Village in May 2017.
Insiders know them as “Henrietta Hoots” and “Hetti Hollers,” and budding artists know them as inspiring leaders. “We truly believe there is an artist in every person that just needs to be nurtured and encouraged,” says Millie.
From a wide range of art classes for every age, to birthday parties, team-building events, family group activities, book club outings, and classes on furniture “rehab” and re-use (yes, you can make a flower planter from a re-purposed chair!), Hoots and Hollers also offers a drop-in art studio for those spontaneous times your creative mood may strike. “We have a variety of materials and ideas on hand for those artists who just want to drop in to create,” explains Millie, who also designed the studio’s handmade work tables and counters.
The two prefer to tailor the art theme for each class or group, which allows for some colorful new ideas, and plenty of experimentation. “We currently offer classes and art opportunities for literally all ages,” says Millie. “We’ve even had the opportunity to incorporate a sonogram into a birth announcement for the future grandparents!”
Hosting a private art party is a minimum $150—or six participants, each creating a $25.00 project—in an approximate one-and-a-half to two-hour time frame. Groups are welcome to bring their own food and beverages, or Hoots and Hollers can arrange for refreshments at an additional cost. In the very near future, LeeAnne and Millie plan to offer a full-service beer and wine bar as well, sure to be a bonus for budding “adult” artists!
At the heart of their mission will always be encouraging individuals to discover their potential artistic talents, especially children. Hoots and Hollers has hosted several art camps over the summer, with three scheduled for the month of August, ranging from a class size of six to 12 kids, depending on age.
“While we try to follow a curriculum, the children always [help determine] the direction the class ends up taking during the week,” says Millie. “It’s always amazing to see the children collaborate with, and inspire, one another during the week, and many a project idea has been altered or recreated by the kids in the art camp!”
From intriguing camp names, such as “Wildflowers and Whimsy,” “Yes to the Mess,” and “Fairies, Wizards and Gnomes,” there’s no shortage of magic and mystery as masterpieces come to life! Yes, you’ll find adorable fairy gardens filling the studio, and collages of flowers just bursting with color and love. Pieces by local artisans—including LeeAnne and Millie—are for sale around the studio as well.
This creative duo works diligently to inspire creativity by allowing their campers and other class participants to think about, and create, the project that’s been suggested, while still letting them have the freedom to incorporate their own style and flair.
“The biggest compliment and ultimate joy in what we do is when someone—mom or grandma—tells us we helped discover or inspire one of our pupil’s love of art,” says Millie. “We love when the student (child or adult) discovers they CAN do it!”
When you’re ready to unleash your own inner artist, visit Hoots and Hollers at 5336 Robinhood Village in Winston-Salem, call them at 336-782-0657, and follow them on Facebook to stay up-to-date with their camps, classes, and special events. Hoots and Hollers is open Thursday and Friday from 10:30 a.m.–3:00 p.m.; Saturday from 10:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m.; and Sunday 1:00 p.m.–4:00 p.m., plus as needed for scheduled camps and classes.