Tell us about your business?
While we don’t like to use the word “class” due to its stuffy connotation, the easiest way most people describe our business is a “paint class in a bar!” Our main goal is for our guests to relax and have a ton of FUN: they socialize with friends and loved ones, they indulge in a drink or two, they might dance a little and sing along with our party playlist, and finally, they get a little creative! We sell all our tickets on our website (PaintNite.com) in advance, so our guests can choose which painting we’ll take them through step by step, which local venue they would like to attend, and of course, the date and time that works best for them!
We currently hold more than 15 public events each week in Saskatoon, North Battleford, Prince Albert and Lloydminster, as well as various charity fundraisers and private parties around north-central Saskatchewan each week.
How did you get started?
I was actually on maternity leave in 2015 when my cousin and aunt went to a Paint Nite in Calgary. I saw their paintings and was floored by how different yet beautiful they both were! And they did this in a BAR of all places? Talk about a perfect combination for a relaxing evening: alcohol and paint!
I’ve always had a passion for creating art, and I like to think I have a bit of an entrepreneurial spirit. So I immediately inquired about bringing the company to Saskatchewan; I was sure it would be hit here! What I liked most about the business concept was that – contrary to popular belief – Paint Nite is not a franchise. Their licensing model offers more freedom to run the business as I choose, and avoid outrageous franchising fees. Basically, our license allows us to use the respectable Paint Nite brand, sell tickets through a secure website, and have access to thousands of beautiful copyrighted paintings. Meanwhile, we get to enjoy being a “local” company: local artists partnering with local venues, bringing the joy of Drinking Creatively to Saskatchewan!
We started with three events in January of 2016, and life kind of went nuts from there! It’s been an amazing journey so far.
What inspires you?
My amazing team of artists inspire me every day. The energy they bring to each event and their passion for art is contagious. They truly make days brighter and bring happiness to everyone around them, keeping our guests coming back again and again. I can’t imagine where we’d be without each of them!
What is your idea of a Modern Woman?
I don’t think there’s any one particular way to be a Modern Woman; to me, the term encourages inclusivity and diversity. Anyone who feels empowered in their femininity, and confident to be whomever she wants to be – whatever that may look like. I love that in this day and age there’s a conversation about supporting one another, despite our differences. Whether you’re a stay-at-home mom, a stiletto-ed CEO, or striving to find a balance between all the different roles a woman can have in her life, I like to think there’s a sense of comraderie in being female. We’re all just trying our best!
What tips can you give to aspiring women entrepreneurs?
Figure out what your strengths and your weaknesses are. Literally make a list! Do what you’re best at, and either improve your skills where they’re lacking or delegate out the tasks you’re not so great at. You can always hire an accountant if you’re a horrible bookkeeper, take a social media workshop if you find online advertising intimidating, or read a book to become a better boss. You’re likely not Wonder Woman, and that’s okay!
Finally, don’t let your drive and your passion waiver in the face of self-doubt. I read an interview with Emma Watson a long time ago, where she spoke about feeling like a fraud sometimes; like she had somehow tricked people into she was talented and had falsely fallen upon success. Surely if Em Wats can fall victim to this sensation occasionally, we all can. But it’s not true! No one is more passionate about your business than you, and you are entirely capable of being successful.
What is one piece of advice you would give yourself looking back?
You can’t do it all, Girl. Hire help and delegate sooner, rather than later. And put that baby in daycare, already. (Shockingly, trying to work 60 hour weeks from home with a toddler doesn’t mix well.) She’ll even enjoy going, I promise. She’ll still love you the most.
What is in the future for Paint Nite in Saskatoon?
We’re always booking fresh paintings, partnering with great venues, and hiring new talent! We vow to keep the party going and the creativity flowing.
A big goal for this year is to do as many fundraisers as we possibly can; we want to support our local community as much as possible. Our dream is to hit the six figures mark. How amazing would it be if we raised over $100,000 for local charities?!
What would we find you doing in your free time?
Oh gosh, this is where you discover how truly boring I am! (I’ve actually convinced myself that working in front of the TV constitutes as R&R some days.) But spending time with my hubby and little girl definitely top the list. We’re also busy preparing for Baby 2, which is currently consuming a lot of time and thought! I recently joined a yoga class. I like decorating (and redecorating) my house. I enjoy photography. Obscure Netflix dramas and documentaries are my fave. If I weren’t pregnant, I’d like to be being skiing and travelling lots right now. Am I super basic? …Probably.
Who is someone that you find is a role model for women in business (personal or celebrity)?
What kind of Saskatchewan girl would I be if I didn’t give a shout-out to Rachel Mielke! She turned her hobby of making jewelry into a hugely successful company: Hillberg & Berk. I’m a bit of a marketing geek, so I admire the way she was able to create such a luxurious brand from homemade jewelry. Branding is everything!
Do you think having a mentor is valuable both while you're starting out and even after you are more experienced?
Absolutely! While starting a business can be extremely rewarding, it can also be overwhelming, isolating, and downright scary. Having someone to talk to who has experienced the same ups and downs that you’re going through is invaluable.
Do you feel a strong sense of community among business woman and female entrepreneurs in Saskatoon and in Saskatchewan?
I do, and I feel like this community is strengthening all the time. We have to thank organizations such as the Modern Woman Show for that; it’s so important to celebrate and support our local female-driven businesses! I think the majority of our community understands that celebrating another’s success doesn’t minimize your own.
You can hang out with Kassidy on Saturday April 22nd & get creative with TWO OPTIONS of Paint Nite classes (2pm & 7pm). Enjoy the Modern Woman Show, a cocktail or two, take in the shopping, tutorials, and bring home a painting!
Click Here to join the Saturday April 22nd Class at 2:00 p.m.
Click Here to join the Saturday April 22nd Class at 7:00 p.m.
*classes include your admission into the Modern Woman Show & Expo