After slinging itself onto the Michigan art scene in 1996, The Mud Room has since spun into a hub of creativity for artists of all ages and artistic experience. Under the direction of the studio's in-house teachers, small groups learn to wield everything from paintbrushes to pottery wheels during four types of classes, which teach such skills as fusing colored glass tiles into kaleidoscopic works or hand-forming ceramics to recreate ancient casseroles. Customers can also stop in to paint pre-made ceramics themselves. The pieces come in various shapes and sizes, which patrons can adorn with colored glaze before handing their artwork over to the professionals to be fired and finished. The studio also offers group pottery classes for parties including girls' nights out, birthdays, and kids' celebrations. In keeping with its safety-first approach, The Mud Room features only nontoxic, lead-free products, ensuring the finished pieces are safe to use with food.
Signature service: Piano Lessons & Music Classes
Staff Size: 2?10 people
Average Duration of Services: 30?60 minutes
Brands Used: Faber, Alfred, Bastien, Hal Leonard, Marlais
Pro Tip: Come with a smile and prepare to have fun exploring all the "plusses" at Piano Plus LLC.
Book Trader Café stacks more than 16,000 titles of gently used books on its shelves, combined with second-hand DVDs and CDs that transform the inventory into multimedia brain food. Literary works and academic books on art, architecture, and paper towels line the store, their spines inviting readers to sink into their vivid and educational worlds. A cult-fiction section assembles an apocrypha of fringe scribes, photography books tempt eyes with their luscious pages, and a children's-book section tempts kids to burrow into a fort of words. Most titles average $4.95, and staff carefully curates each one to ensure a quality recycled collection sans fraying bindings or torn pages. While Book Trader Café's inventory rotates frequently, the online store lists troves of its selections and lets bibliophiles reserve books by phone. With new old books in hand, patrons can stroll over to the café to enjoy them and further sate their appetites for letters by reading the menu.
Owner Heather Fray draws from years of experience selling music in Lansing to stock The Record Lounge's shelves with quality vinyl from both famous and Michigan-area artists. New LPs ($12–$25) slide onto turntables to hum out fresh tunes, and a pre-owned selection ($5+ each) hides recordings that could complete an audiophile's collection or could shrink in the dryer to fit in CD players. Visitors can sift through bins filled with $0.50 and $1 titles to fill up empty shelves, or seek out vintage stereo equipment to repair malfunctioning decks. Slip into a band T-shirt ($16–$18) to show support for groups such as The Beatles and Rush, or don a Record Lounge business tee ($15), which grants its owner a 10% discount when worn on future visits. Painted records cover the interior with colorful portholes; one wall is devoted to music of yore, with posters from local shows, classic images of Michigan acts from the ’70s, and daguerreotypes of Orville Gibson smashing his first guitar.
Our hand-made, Fair Trade gift/decor store offers an extraordinary range of merchandise including stone carvings, pottery, jewelry, clothing, toys, musical instruments, coffee/tea, chocolate & more! Purchasing unique items provides support and hope for impovershed artisans in developing countries.
Hear You Go gives books their long-awaited voice with audio recordings of more than 3,000 titles. Tracks are embedded in the nurturing architecture of CDs, tapes, and MP3s, ensuring that listeners of all format preferences can kick back and follow their favorite gumshoes, romantic heroines, or gang of child art thieves through cliffhangers and plot twists. Lend your ears to popular new arrivals such as Carrie Fisher’s “Wishful Drinking,” Edward M. Kennedy’s “True Compass,” and Glenn Beck’s “Arguing With Idiots,” or let Hear You Go’s resident audiophiles track down hard-to-find and specialty books, ensuring that virtually any compacted classic lands in the palm of your hand. With both pickup and direct-mail programs available, you can easily enliven car trips, add intellectual stimulation to workout routines, and help obtuse houseplants attain sentience.