Custom Frame

Crafty drinkers in Charleston can already down wine in painting classes and candle-making workshops, but Custom Frames of Charleston is the first local venue to offer customers the chance to tipple and frame pictures at the same time.

“I’m going to be supervising, of course,” says owner Maelyn Belmondo. Although participants will use covered blades to cut mats, she adds, “This isn’t the place to come get sloshed.”

Belmondo took up framing as a hobby about a year ago, inspired by a desire to preserve her children’s artwork. She suspected other people would enjoy applying their creativity to similar projects, so on June 27 signed a lease for a commercial space at 52 Wentworth Street; she received her discharge papers from the Air Force the same day.

“It’s been a fun little transition,” she says. “I’ve had a lot of people excited about the idea.”

There are 10 workstations in the front room of the shop, scheduled to open next week. Belmondo isn’t supplying the drinks, but she is offering a variety of mats, precut glass and instruction. Class prices start at $35.

“What I want to harp on is there’s no experience required,” she says. “It’s not like I’m going to say ‘Have fun: I’ll see you in an hour.’”

And for those participants who have more fun than might be considered prudent when cutting straight lines, Belmondo says she’ll be on hand to help with those issues too.

“There’s a lot of redundancy built into this,” she says. “We’re going to make sure those lines are straight.”

To learn more, visit

Reach Hanna Raskin at 843-937-5560 and follow her on Twitter @hannaraskin.

Food editor and chief critic

Eating all of the chicken livers just as fast as I can.