Café Monet Art Studio brings creative outlet, stress relief to your door

Café Monet owner Jules Winson said the community has responded well to the new ideas Café Monet has introduced to keep business alive, including to-go pottery painting kits, art lesson plans for kids and “Heart Kits for Heroes”—a program in which customers can buy health care workers a pottery painting kit. (Courtesy Café Monet Art Studio)
Café Monet owner Jules Winson said the community has responded well to the new ideas Café Monet has introduced to keep business alive, including to-go pottery painting kits, art lesson plans for kids and “Heart Kits for Heroes”—a program in which customers can buy health care workers a pottery painting kit. (Courtesy Café Monet Art Studio)

Café Monet owner Jules Winson said the community has responded well to the new ideas Café Monet has introduced to keep business alive, including to-go pottery painting kits, art lesson plans for kids and “Heart Kits for Heroes”—a program in which customers can buy health care workers a pottery painting kit. (Courtesy Café Monet Art Studio)

It has been nearly a month since Austin Mayor Steve Adler and Travis County Judge issued an order ordering all restaurant dine-in areas to close, and more than two weeks since local governments issued stay-at-home orders closing all nonessential businesses. In the interim, business owners have completely flipped their business models—prioritizing delivery and virtual sales or setting up online ordering systems in a matter of days.

Just two weeks before businesses across the area were forced to close due to stay-at-home orders, Jules Winson had opened a new clay studio at Café Monet Art Studio’s original Westgate location. It was a sharp blow, but Winson said she is trying to focus on the positives.


“I’m not trying to focus on what I’ve lost, I’m trying to focus on what I’m left with,” she said.

After putting the entire inventory on an online commerce site within days, Winson is left with a service that can help the community find a creative outlet and unplug from a coronavirus news cycle that can be all-consuming.

Café Monet's to-go options include pottery painting kits, as well as lesson plans for kids and an option for customers to buy a kit for a health care worker.


Winson said the messages she has received have brightened and otherwise difficult time. An expectant mother wrote to say that she was down about losing the ability to pick out things for her baby’s arrival, and being able to create something was a special opportunity.

“People want something to distract them from the pandemic, they need little things like this to keep them going. Art heals,” Winson said.


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