The latest in Pinterest-style, bar-side art making has hit Boston.
Following up on the trendy hit that had arty amateurs painting landscapes in pubs and restaurants, Somerville-based Paint Nite this year is launching Plant Nite, a vegetation-based spinoff currently sprouting in the city.
It works like this: so-called “master gardeners” walk you through the process of placing plant-and-soil-based centerpieces — spruced up with strands of moss, colorful accouterments and even, for some reason, tiny plastic dinosaurs — in the glass orb or planter of your choosing.
It’s dirty business. But not too dirty, said spokeswoman Courtney Osgood.
“We make sure we clean up really well,” Osgood said. “We make sure to host in places that don’t have carpet.”
The company has been running a soft opening for the past few months to work out the kinks, and there are just four so-called “master gardeners” on staff to lead lessons.
Lindsay Weber, who is also the company’s director of Boston operations, is one of them. She recently helped a sold-out crowd build arrangements at a Margarita’s in Medford.
“They ordered margaritas and chips and guacamole and I walked them through a succulent terrarium right there at the bar,” Weber said.
Plant Nite is preparing to go big with the idea. It operates only in Greater Boston right now, but is currently recruiting green-thumbed employees and eying an expansion to other cities, Osgood said.
They hope to capitalize on the success of Paint Nite, a locally headquartered business that now employs an army of 1,000 cheerful “master painters” giving lessons worldwide in 1,400 cities and towns, according to Osgood. In this region alone, she said, the paint-based lessons are happening in about 200 bars.
Tickets for the botanist-friendly Nite venture cost as much as $50, or $35 via discount sites like Groupon. And, the company claims, every Plant Nite on its schedule is booked up through November.
Restaurants and bars aren’t paid to offer up their venues: Paint Nite/Plant Nite keeps ticket sales and the bar-owners cash in on crafters' drinks and food, Osgood said.
It’s a business-booster, restaurateurs told Metro, though they said paint events have been less of a boon since a wave of restaurants have ridden the trend and new brick-and-mortar crafts "bars" have popped up in Boston and beyond.
So Plant Nite offers a new way to bring in customers attracted to the novelty of it all, said George Pepdjonovic, owner of two-time Plant Nite host Maggy’s Lounge in Quincy.
An owner of a music-oriented venue, he still can’t believe people pay $50 to arrange plants — “I’m dumbfounded,” he said — but he said customers seem happy and he certainly appreciates the business.
“I stopped [hosting painting meet-ups] because so many places were doing them around me,” said Pepdjonovic, who added that Maggy's also hosts meet-ups for makeup kits, jewelry and sometimes sex toys, mostly on Wednesdays. “There’s not many places doing this right now so it’s extremely hot.”