Craft lover opens AR Workshop Carmel on Gray Road

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Brenda Armie has always been a lover of crafts.

“I love making things, Christmas and birthday presents,” Armie said. “I was in technology for the last nine years at Guerin Catholic High School and I decided it was time for a change. I went to one of these types of crafting places. I went to see if there were any franchises and AR Workshop came up.”

Armie decided she wanted to open the shop and teach classes.

A Noblesville resident, Armie opened AR Workshop Carmel with her husband, Jeff. The store is at 14643 Gray Rd. in Westfield, on the other side of the street from Carmel. The store couldn’t be called AR Workshop Westfield because there was already a store by the same name in Westfield, N.J.

The AR Workshop franchise is the first in Indiana. The AR name is derived from the last names of co-founders Maureen Anders and Adria Ruff.

“I was looking for something different and this was it, especially when I went on the website,” Armie said. “They coordinate everything so well.”

Armie said customers can come in by themselves, with a friend or groups for do-it-yourself projects. The store, which opened in late August, is hosting private parties. Parties and classes are conducted mostly on evenings and weekends. 

Customers can make items such as cake stands, dog beds, serving trays, cheese and wine trays, pillows and chunky blankets. 

“I am full time at another job and full time here,” said Jeff, who helps clean up and setting up projects. “I have an art background. At this stage of our lives, it’s nice to have something we can do in retirement.”

Armie said nine part-time employees help out. She trained the staff by first having them do projects under her guidance.

Employees had their families in the store to wait on them, practicing customer service.

There is a calendar on the website, showing when different classes are taught.

For more, visit arworkshop.com/Carmel.

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