Three years ago Maggie Anderson quit her job as a bus routing coordinator for Pinellas County Schools to devote herself full-time to teaching others the benefits of arts and crafts.
“I painted all my life. My parents owned a ceramic shop,” she said. My husband asked me, ‘why don’t you quit your job and do this? Do what you love and love what you do.’"
And so she did, opening a store in Clearwater where she taught decorative painting.
This past Labor Day weekend was a labor of love for Anderson. She moved Maggie’s Crafts to a bigger location on Highland Avenue in Largo and hired several other artists to teach classes too. Anderson said most of the customers moved along with her as well as four artists whose work are sold in the shop on consignment.
Customers can come in and buy handcrafted pieces or make their own in the workroom. Classes include: acrylic painting, colored pencils, pen and ink, polymer clay, mosaics, jewelry and alcohol inks.
Anderson said she offers some unique products including custom painting surfaces made through a local woodworker and decorative painting books that are not found in other local stores.
For Halloween, several craft projects are available. Class schedules are posted on the store’s website. Anderson welcomes students new to arts and crafts.
“My favorite thing is teaching a beginner. It gives people confidence. It improves their self-esteem,” Anderson said.